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Addison's Disease Message Board

Addison's Disease Board Index

[QUOTE=orion;3124659]Primary also has adrenal hypoaldosteronism and if untreated you can have symptoms like muscle weakness, extreme salt cravings, and very low blood pressure. You must take florinef and extra salt to compensate.

Secondary doesn't have this problem but may have other hormonal loses such as low growth hormone, elevated prolactin, sex hormone problems and thyroid problems.

Secondary is easy to separate from primary by simply testing the adrenal glands with ACTH. If they respond to the test, you are secondary, if you don't respond with an increase in cortisol you are primary. It's fairly simple to establish which is which.

How were you diagnosed? What tests were used to establish your adrenal insufficiency. If it was just a blood test for cortisol, you need much more than that.[/QUOTE]

Thanks. I know it's kind of a weird question. The truth is I'm not sure how I was diagnosed exactly. I'd been having symptoms that pointed towards Addison's -- salt cravings (only thought of a symptom in retrospect), orthostatic hypotention, fatigue, vomiting, etc. But no noticeable darkening of the skin. I went into the ER for diabetic ketoacidosis. Something about my blood work -- I *think* my electrolytes -- was off.

I remember being told that they couldn't do the Insulin-induced hypoglycemia test. I have no recollection of being given any other specific tests. I think I was diagnosed as Secondary mostly because I didn't have the hyperpigmentation. But, since then, I've read that some of the symptoms I was having were only symtoms of Primary.

I'm currently taking 5mg of prednisone a day.

I also have Type I Diabetes and Hypothyroidism. For various reasons, I haven't been regularly seeing an Endocrinologist, but now I have an appointment with one and I'm trying to have a set of questions/issues ready for her.

Again, thanks for your reply! :)

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