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Addison's Disease Message Board

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I recently got my cortisol tested and it was 19 on their scale of 2-9 (I don't know what scale this clinic uses). I have been having symptoms almost half my life. I got sudden depression when I was 12, when I was a relatively happy child before. Insomnia followed, I have not been able to sleep without a pill since I was 15. Anxiety. One DR. Diagnosed me as Bi Polar, when I am only "high" (slightly) at night when I dont take a sleeping pill, and VERY rarely before and never know. Right now, I am so exhausted I want to go to sleep an hour after I wake up. I find myself watching TV and suddenly I am zoned out or closing my eyes. I have zero concentration anymore, and my mind is dull. I used to read passionately, now I never read. Have had horrible gas and bloating for six years. Have been pumped full of anti depressants which have never helped. I am at my wits end. I can't go on with my life with this fatigue. The funny thing is, the DR. didn't actually want to test my cortisol levels because it was "unnecessary", so my boyfriend, who is a near expert on thyroid disorders and such, wrote down to test for cortisol. And when I got back to my shrink and he saw it was elevated, all he said was that my boyfriend was in "serious risk of being arrested for inpersonating a DR."! and said that "elevated cortisol is just a symptom of depression and stress". Kind of the chicken and the egg thing, did my depression cause my cortisol to sky rocket or did my cortisol make my depression worse?
My thyroid checks out ok, Just my cortisol is high.
ANY HELP WOULD BE APPRECIATED!! Happy Easter or whatever religion you practice are I hope you enjoy your Sunday!
It sounds a bit like Cushing's but let me ask you a few more questions (btw, many of us who've had Cushing's had HUGE problems with depression and/or diagnosed with bipolar):
Have you gained weight or has your weight switched to your mid-section (pregnant belly look?)
Do you bruise easily?
Facial hair?
Flushing of the face?
Is your face very round?

Your result is quite high but I'm assuming it was a blood test. You need to find a good endocrinologist (preferably an endo who focuses on pituitary/adrenal issues) and have them run a complete metabolic profile and a 24 hour urinary free cortisol which is the gold standard for Cushing's testing. I don't know what Chris is saying about endos having a poor track record --- a good endo will have a superb track record and will see hundreds of Cushing's patients per year. Where do you live - if you can supply me with that info I might be able to suggest a good endo. Anyway, Wanda forwarded me your message and I hope you are able to reply. Oh - and three big cheers for the
boyfriend. You should have replied that he was doing a better job impersonating a doctor than most doctors already do!

Hey Cushie

I have large amounts of fat on my midsection. I am thin in all other body parts except my stomache, in fact I am slightly underweight compared to others with my build. So I look like a thin girl who is five months pregnant.
I bruise extremely easily. No facial hair, thank god. I do flush in the face a bit, when I was in school my face would get so red for absolutely no reason. I do have a round face. My appetite is gone. I am dead exhausted. I basically feel like I am slowly dying.
But a bit of good news, there was a cancellation and I am getting into an endo this thursday. Dr. Rossman around Warren, OH (I hope it is ok to use names on this board?) He is supposed to be very good. At this point I have no where to go but up.
Well, if this doctor doesn't work out don't let it discourage you, ok? Several Cushing's patients had to see several endos before we found the right one. Make sure and ask him how many Cushing's cases he's seen before - if he's seen over ten then you've found an endo who might know a thing or two. Also, if he does a low dose dex test (you take 1 mg of dexamethasone at 11pm and come in at 8 am for a blood draw) tell him you want something more reliable (that has a 30% failure rate!). Another good site to visit is [url][/url] (hope I can do that).

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