[en] We investigated hemodynamics and plasma catecholamine concentrations in eight consecutive patients undergoing laparoscopic adrenalectomy for suspected pheochromocytoma. The same anesthesia protocol was used in all patients: a continuous infusion of sufentanil 0.5 microg x kg(-1) x h(-1) and isoflurane 0.4% (end-tidal) in 50% N2O/O2. Systolic arterial pressure was maintained between 120 and 160 mm Hg by adjusting an infusion of nicardipine, a calcium-channel blocker, while tachycardia (>100 bpm) was treated by 1-mg boluses of atenolol. Hemodynamics (thermodilution technique) and plasma catecholamine concentrations were measured before surgery, after the induction of anesthesia, after turning the patient to the lateral position, during pneumoperitoneum, during tumor manipulation, after adrenalectomy, and at the end of surgery. Two events resulted in significant catecholamine release: creation of the pneumoperitoneum and adrenal gland manipulation. As a consequence, a twofold increase in cardiac output was recorded. Adjustments of nicardipine infusion (2-6 microg x kg(-1) x min(-1)) minimized changes in mean arterial pressure. Beta-adrenergic blockade was necessary in six patients. In conclusion, laparoscopic adrenalectomy for pheochromocytoma results in marked catecholamine release during pneumoperitoneum and tumor manipulation. Titration of a nicardipine infusion allowed easy and quick control of the hemodynamic aberrancies related to these processes. IMPLICATIONS: Pneumoperitoneum during laparoscopy, now used for adrenalectomy, may complicate anesthetic management of patients with pheochromocytoma. In this study, laparoscopic adrenalectomy was associated with catecholamine release during the creation of pneumoperitoneum and tumor manipulation. Adjustments of a nicardipine infusion readily attenuated the subsequent hemodynamic aberrancies.