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Disease Profile

Paraganglioma and gastric stromal sarcoma

Prevalence estimates on Rare Medical Network websites are calculated based on data available from numerous sources, including US and European government statistics, the NIH, Orphanet, and published epidemiologic studies. Rare disease population data is recognized to be highly variable, and based on a wide variety of source data and methodologies, so the prevalence data on this site should be assumed to be estimated and cannot be considered to be absolutely correct.

<1 / 1 000 000

US Estimated

Europe Estimated

Age of onset





Autosomal dominant A pathogenic variant in only one gene copy in each cell is sufficient to cause an autosomal dominant disease.


Autosomal recessive Pathogenic variants in both copies of each gene of the chromosome are needed to cause an autosomal recessive disease and observe the mutant phenotype.


dominant X-linked dominant inheritance, sometimes referred to as X-linked dominance, is a mode of genetic inheritance by which a dominant gene is carried on the X chromosome.


recessive Pathogenic variants in both copies of a gene on the X chromosome cause an X-linked recessive disorder.


Mitochondrial or multigenic Mitochondrial genetic disorders can be caused by changes (mutations) in either the mitochondrial DNA or nuclear DNA that lead to dysfunction of the mitochondria and inadequate production of energy.

Multigenic or multifactor Inheritance involving many factors, of which at least one is genetic but none is of overwhelming importance, as in the causation of a disease by multiple genetic and environmental factors.


Not applicable


Other names (AKA)

Carney-Stratakis syndrome; Paraganglioma and gastrointestinal stromal tumor; Paraganglioma and GIST;


Congenital and Genetic Diseases; Endocrine Diseases; Rare Cancers


The following summary is from Orphanet, a European reference portal for information on rare diseases and orphan drugs.

Orpha Number: 97286

Carney-Stratakis syndrome is a recently described familial syndrome characterized by gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST) and paragangliomas, often at multiple sites.

It is a very rare syndrome reported in less than 20 unrelated families to date. It presents at a young age (median age: 19 years) with an apparently equal ratio of male and female patients.

Clinical description
Patients with Carney-Stratakis syndrome have both GIST and paraganglioma. The gastric stromal sarcomas are multifocal and the paragangliomas are multicentric. The clinical spectrum of Carney-Stratakis syndrome varies widely, depending on the localization and the size of the tumors, and may include a palpable mass, dysphagia, abdominal pain, weight loss, hematemesis, melena, obstruction, perforation, cranial nerve palsies, tinnitus and hearing loss. GIST are intramural mesenchymal tumors of the gastrointestinal tract that originate from stem cells with characteristics of the interstitial cells of Cajal (the pacemaker cells which regulate peristalsis in the digestive tract). Paragangliomas are usually benign tumors that occur without clinical evidence of oversecretion and that arise within the sympathetic nervous system from cells of the paraganglia.

The vast majority of Carney-Stratakis syndrome cases are due to germline mutations of the succinate dehydrogenase (SDH) subunit genes SDHB, SDHC and SDHD.

Diagnostic methods
Diagnosis is made by clinical and radiologic examination, and confirmed immunohistochemically. Genetic testing to determine if SDH defects may be contributing to tumor growth or recurrence should be offered to pediatric GIST patients.

Differential diagnosis
The main differential diagnosis includes Carney triad.

Genetic counseling
Predisposition to developing these tumors is inherited in an autosomal dominant manner with incomplete penetrance.

Management and treatment
Treatment modalities are surgery, embolization and radiotherapy. Chemotherapy with imatinib mesylate may be helpful for some patients with advanced-stage GIST. Targeting SDH function may potentiallybe useful in treating Carney-Stratakis syndrome patients but, at present, there are no drugs that restore SDH function. Life-long follow-up should be offered to patients with Carney-Stratakis syndrome.

Visit the Orphanet disease page for more resources.


This table lists symptoms that people with this disease may have. For most diseases, symptoms will vary from person to person. People with the same disease may not have all the symptoms listed. This information comes from a database called the Human Phenotype Ontology (HPO) . The HPO collects information on symptoms that have been described in medical resources. The HPO is updated regularly. Use the HPO ID to access more in-depth information about a symptom.

Medical Terms Other Names
Learn More:
80%-99% of people have these symptoms
Gastrointestinal stroma tumor
30%-79% of people have these symptoms
Abdominal pain
Pain in stomach
Stomach pain

[ more ]

Cranial nerve paralysis
Poor swallowing
Swallowing difficulties
Swallowing difficulty

[ more ]

Gastrointestinal hemorrhage
Gastrointestinal bleeding
Hearing impairment
Hearing defect

[ more ]

Intestinal obstruction
Bowel obstruction
Intestinal blockage

[ more ]

Ringing in ears
Ringing in the ears

[ more ]

Weight loss
Percent of people who have these symptoms is not available through HPO
Neoplasm of the gastrointestinal tract
Gastrointestinal tract tumor
GI tract tumor

[ more ]



Making a diagnosis for a genetic or rare disease can often be challenging. Healthcare professionals typically look at a person’s medical history, symptoms, physical exam, and laboratory test results in order to make a diagnosis. The following resources provide information relating to diagnosis and testing for this condition. If you have questions about getting a diagnosis, you should contact a healthcare professional.

Testing Resources

  • The Genetic Testing Registry (GTR) provides information about the genetic tests for this condition. The intended audience for the GTR is health care providers and researchers. Patients and consumers with specific questions about a genetic test should contact a health care provider or a genetics professional.


FDA-Approved Treatments

The medication(s) listed below have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as orphan products for treatment of this condition. Learn more orphan products.

  • Iobenguane I 131(Brand name: Azedra) Manufactured by Progenics Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
    FDA-approved indication: July 2018, iobenguane I 131 (Azedra) was approved for the treatment of adult and pediatric patients 12 years and older with iobenguane scan positive, unresectable, locally advanced or metastatic pheochromocytoma or paraganglioma who require systemic anticancer therapy.
    National Library of Medicine Drug Information Portal

Learn more

These resources provide more information about this condition or associated symptoms. The in-depth resources contain medical and scientific language that may be hard to understand. You may want to review these resources with a medical professional.

Where to Start

  • The National Cancer Institute provides the most current information on cancer for patients, health professionals, and the general public.

In-Depth Information

  • The Monarch Initiative brings together data about this condition from humans and other species to help physicians and biomedical researchers. Monarch’s tools are designed to make it easier to compare the signs and symptoms (phenotypes) of different diseases and discover common features. This initiative is a collaboration between several academic institutions across the world and is funded by the National Institutes of Health. Visit the website to explore the biology of this condition.
  • Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) is a catalog of human genes and genetic disorders. Each entry has a summary of related medical articles. It is meant for health care professionals and researchers. OMIM is maintained by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 
  • Orphanet is a European reference portal for information on rare diseases and orphan drugs. Access to this database is free of charge.
  • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Paraganglioma and gastric stromal sarcoma. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.