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How does carcinoid syndrome affect the body?

Dr. Jeanne Morrison, PhD
Family Practitioner
Carcinoid syndrome affects the body in a number of ways. For one thing, carcinoid tumors, that cause the syndrome, block your intestines, resulting in abdominal pain and changes to your bowel movements, such as frequent diarrhea. The carcinoid tumor is also producing chemicals that go into your blood. If your liver can't break down these chemicals, then you will start to feel the effects of them. The major symptoms of the carcinoid syndrome are flushing and diarrhea. You may also experience purple discoloration of your nose or lips, difficulty breathing or a fast heartbeat. Additionally, you may experience longer-lasting symptoms, such as heart problems, malnutrition, and or erectile dysfunction.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.