A risk factor is anything that increases a person’s chance of developing a tumor. Although risk factors often influence the development of a tumor, most do not directly cause the tumor. Some people with several risk factors never develop a tumor, while others with no known risk factors do. However, knowing your risk factors and talking about them with your doctor may help you make more informed lifestyle and health care choices.
The cause of most cancerous adrenal cortical carcinomas is not known. However, people with certain hereditary conditions—such as Li-Fraumeni syndrome, Von Hippel-Lindau syndrome, and Carney Complex—have a higher risk of developing an adrenal gland tumor. People who have a high risk of developing an adrenal gland tumor because of family history should be examined and evaluated yearly by their doctor.