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Addison's Disease Message Board

Addison's Disease Board Index

From your answers Matty, I would say you have some kind of multiple hormone deficiency. Many of your symptoms correlate with a pituitary problem possibly caused by blows to the head. However, when related to vision problems things could be much more serious. It is possible that you have a pituitary adenoma and that needs to be checked out soon. Your GP could order an MRI for this.

If the vision problems you are experiencing include loss of some peripheral vision or loss of night vision then you need to see a neurologist immediately. If you experience sudden sharp severe headaches or a dramatic change in your vision such as double vision you need to go to the emergency room.

I think you are also seeing side effects from taking too many antibiotics. Those antibiotics kill the bacteria in your guts that you need to process food properly. Sometimes the kill off is so severe that you can get yeast overgrowth because bacteria eats yeast. The yeast generates byproducts that some people are sensitive to and causes stomach and intestine problems as well as a white tongue. The fix is to stop eating all sugar products for at least 3 weeks (includes breads, cereals, fruits, pop etc). Yeast eats sugar so it will stop multiplying without this food source. You most likely also need an antifungal medication like Nystatin which you must get from your GP. Nystatin will kill the yeast. Finally you need to find some bacteria pills that many vitamin stores sell. This will replace the lost bacteria and the new bacteria will begin to eat the yeast and keep it in balance. Try to find the pills with at least 3 types of bacteria.

Performance problems and low libido are a sure sign of hormone problems which may include any/all of the following: low testosterone, high prolactin, low cortisol, low DHEA and low thyroid hormone. You need those hormones checked as well as your LH and FSH (to determine the source of your libido problem). My guess is at least some of those hormones will be unusually low or high and will give a clue to the root of your problem.

By the way, I answered yes to all the 25 questions and multiple doctors still found me totally normal; which is exactly what I wanted to hear. Unfortunately they were wrong, and only great persistence on my part eventually lead to my pituitary problem. But by then the situation was severe. Don't let that happen to you. Doctors don't know everything and they need help. Write down all your symptoms in detail, keep a diary of your daily life showing how severly you are affected. See you GP to get an MRI and do the blood tests necessary to rule out a pituitary problem.

Finally, adrenal insufficiency can be life threatening. If you experience a high fever or great physical trama it is possible to go into shock from lack of cortisol. You need to go to emergency if those happen and tell them what is going on.

I am not a doctor, but I have lived through the symptoms you describe and I know the medical system in Canada isn't geared up to easily diagnosing obscure problems. You have to take an active part in helping yourself. Don't just rely on one doctor because many of them are too busy or too lazy to do the work necessary for some patients.

Good luck.
I have included how I think each question is related to hormones. Remember a single test can be normal but all hormones are pulsed so one test isnt diagnostic of anything. Of course each symptom can also be related to other disease activity so one or two aren't particularly diagnostic either. Many together start to make the pattern more clear.

1. Do you wake up in the morning with a backache that goes away as the day progresses? ** No I can't say as I do although I have lower back pains other times in the day, sometimes pretty bad

[low back pain can be a sign of low cortisol, morning back pain is particularly indicative]

2. Do you have sexual performance problems? ** For sure. My sex drive is a big fat zilch and I have a hard time maintaining an erection because I'm so tired and dsinterested usually.

[connected with: low testosterone, high prolactin, low cortisol, low DHEA also abnormal LH and FSH]

3. Do you have dry skin? Especially hands/feet? ** Yes to the dry skin. Notice more so, cold extremeties but they are also dry.

[low thyroid especially if you also have cold/heat intolerance, low cortisol is often related to night sweats]

4. Do you have heavy callouses on your feet, especially on the heal of your foot and side of your big toe? ** Not really no.

[very low thyroid]

5. Do you have a sore tongue especially after eating acid/salty foods and does it have a white coating on it, especially in the morning when you wake up? ** White coating yes, sore I wouldn't say too often no.

[yeast/fungal infection in the mouth]

6. Have you checked your body temperature immediately upon waking? If not, do it a few days and take the average. ** No but I know I'm extremely cold. I will measure soon.

[morning basal temperatures below 96F are a sign of low thyroid]

7. Do you have muscle/joint pains, especially in the knees when climbing stairs?** My knees are terrible. I've had pain in this area for a long time.

[low testosterone, low DHEA]

8. Do you have loose stool, not diahrea, but soft and not well formed? ** Yes absolutely.

[fungal/yeast infection]

9. Have you had any blows to your head, like in a car accident; around the time this all started? ** Perhaps, I mean I did get into a few scrums where I took some nast head shots but not sure if this is related.

[possible pituitary damage, depends on how often and how hard the blow, but one hard blow can do damage by causing bleeding]

10. Do you have a memory problem recalling events or things people said, but if they remind you about the event you can remember it well, as long as they keep supplying hints? ** I have a terrible memory, almost non-existent short and long.

[low testosterone, low growth hormone, low cortisol, the later 2 are also related to brain fog]

11. Do you have frequent stomach upset? ** Yeah

[fungal/yeasst infection in the gut...often caused by frequent use of antibiotics]

12. You mentioned having an inappropriate belly. Are your arms and legs unusually skinny considering how big your trunk is? ** My arms and legs are soooooo skinny.

[a classic sign of low growth hormone, especially when connected with low muscle mass]

13. If you look at your eyebrows, is the outer 1/3 over your eye missing or very light compared to the inner 2/3's? ** Not sure will have to check.

[low thyroid]

14. Has a doctor compared your blood pressure lying down and then immediately after you stand up? Was it different? ** Not sure.

[if the pressure is not the same = low cortisol]

15. Have you lost muscle strength? Specifically is it harder to open pickle jars, or to lift things that previously you could do with no problem? ** For sure.

[low testosterone, low growth hormone, low DHEA]

16. If you exercise does pain in your muscles cause you to stop or reduce your activity? Does the pain only go away if you stop completely? ** Just get more tired from exercise.

[low cortisol, low testosterone, low DHEA]

17. Are you having vision problems? Specifically, loss of night vision, change in color vision between your two eyes (ie: red in one eye isn't quite the same color as the other), or loss of peripheral vision. ** Big vision loss in the last year.

[pituitary adenoma or migraine]

18. Sometimes does just the thought of doing something requiring physical energy just make you so tired you don't do it even if its important? ** Huge complaint yes.

[low cortisol, low thyroid]

19. Have you noticed breathing problems almost like you feel you are getting asthma or do you have asthma of recent origin? ** I developed moderate to severe sleep apnea and I'm only 26 years old, weighing 160 pounds! They thought I should have been 60 years old when I came in.

[asthma = low DHEA, sleep apnea with no weight problems = low growth hormone]

20. You mentioned frequent infections. How many colds/flu did you get last year and how long did they last? Do they go into your chest and cause you to use antibiotics? ** Perhaps two or three. They run significant courses each time requiring antibiotics.

[low thyroid, low cortisol, low testosterone] {adding zinc, selenium and vitamin C as well as a multivitamin is a good idea..each adds a bit to your immune system}

21. How often are you taking antibiotics and have you ever taken antifungal prescription medicine? ** No.

[you should take anti fungal as well or at least take probiotics from a health food store]

22. Are you unusually tanned or have dark skin folds which seem inappropriate? ** Not really.

[means you probably don't have Addison's disease, but most likely have adrenal insufficiency caused by a pituitary problem]

23. Do you suffer from anxiety for no apparent reason? Do you have heart palpitations? Have you noticed your heart seemingly missing beats? ** Anxiety/panic attacks something fierece. Social paranoia.

[low thyroid combined with normal corisol and/or low growth hormone, low growth hormone also can cause apathy, self social isolation, fatigue and brain fog]

24. Have you had any abnormal blood tests? Or have all of them come back normal? ** Never really seen the reuslts so I cna't comment yet.

[ALWAYS get copies of every test you have so that if nothing else you can check how things are changing or inform new doctors about past test results]

25. Have you been tested for hepatitis, thyroid, diabetes, testosterone, prolactin or growth hormone?

[phone your GP and find out the test results and see what tests were actually done]

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