Pheochromocytoma is a rare tumor that forms on the adrenal glands, causing those glands to release excessive amounts of the epinephrine and norepinephrine hormones that can lead to life-threatening hypertension. This type of tumor can be noncancerous or malignant, and can affect anyone at any age. Symptoms may include spells of high blood pressure, rapid or forceful heartbeat, profound sweating, severe headaches, tremors, paleness and shortness of breath. Certain activities and foods can trigger these spells, such as physical exertion, stress, a bowel movement, alcoholic beverages, pickled foods and some cheeses, along with medications like decongestants and stimulants. Treatment for pheochromocytoma will depend on whether it is benign or malignant, and may involve surgery, blood pressure medicine and cancer treatments.