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Pheochromocytoma Support Foundation

  Shining the light on pheochromocytoma awareness through education, early detection, and support. 

What do I do? How can I help support my friend?

Visit our Family page for more information.


Visit our Facebook Page to read posts by people who have stood by friends, and from patients.

Stand by them!

Your friend is confused about what is happening to them right now, and possibly scared. They may be on strong medications that leave them confused or disoriented. Be patient with their questions, and moods.


Put them in good spirits!

Don't be negative when you visit. Pheo's often leave people with an impending sense of doom, due to the tumor messing with their glands and levels. Be happy. Make pleasant talk.


Be encouraging!

One of my favorite text messages I ever received was before I went into surgery. My best friend sent me a text reminding me that I was a fighter and she would fight alongside of me. She finished it by telling me that she loved me and would come visit me at home in a few days. It put me in really positive spirits. And while I won't reveal the exact hysterical wording she used to describe me as a fighter, it made me giggle and laugh, and was exactly what I needed.


Send emails, flowers, or just visit with a big smile. Be natural. The best visits were people who visited and it was almost like we were sitting around my living room, talking.


Be respectful.

Don't assume your friend wants to see photos of what they're missing out on while they are stuck in the hospital or on rest. Ask before you start showing photos or status updates ("Would you like to see the photos from that birthday party last week, or look at them another time?"). Don't be afraid of your friend, either. The machines and IV's look scary, but it is your friend under it all.


Think outside the hospital.

If they are allowed to have it (check with the doc!), they might enjoy something yummy that didn't come from the hospital cafeteria. The day my mom walked in with a Subway sandwich and a Dr. Pepper was a pretty good day. In fact, I talked about that sandwich for a few days.