1 more ? then I'll stop! re: cortisol levels and ACTH challenge

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by dpstar, Mar 3, 2006.

  1. dpstar

    dpstar New Member

    I'm so happy to have found this board, I can't stop asking questions. I have also been reading and reading old posts, so I hope I'm notbeing too repetitive.

    Anyone else have ok/high cortisol levels, but a poor response on the ACTH challenge? I was tested in the a.m.- cortisol was 22.4. The level only went to 24 after the ACTH injection (should double). The nurse said she had never seen anything like that (hihg cortisol, but no response to ACTH). My doctor, who is NOT easy to talk to, mumbled when I asked if the intial level was hgihg, then put me on Cortef. I felt FANTASTIC for 1 week, then got horribly Depressed. I'd love to try going up on the Cortef (the intial pos. results seem to have faded, but I'm worried about getting any more Depressed. Shoudl I even be on Cortef with an initial level of 22.4 in the a.m.?

    signed,

    worried, confused, depressed, and JUST WANTING TO FEEL BETTER!!
  2. spiritsky

    spiritsky Member

    I'm not sure what dose you're on but I would be careful with cortisol. A little bit can help your immune system and inflammation etc, but too much and you can end up depressing your immune system. My wife takes 10mg time released bio-identical cortisol in the mornings and it works well for her.

    Did you get your other hormone levels checked?

    Is Cortef bio-indentical?

    Did he run the ACTH test twice? Maybe the first time the lab didn't get an accurate result - lab error! It does happen.
  3. jfrustrated

    jfrustrated New Member

    I admit that cortisol is something that we play with at our own peril - but it is potent, for both good and bad. It does carry a wierd range of side effects!!!!

    My doc. says that blood tests for cortisol levels are useless. The best/most accurate testing is a 24 hour saliva testing proceedure. You take saliva samples - usually 4 - over a 24 hour period and then send them off to the lab. for testing. My blood and saliva test results for cortisol levels were quite different. If your doc. will not help you arrange for saliva cortisol tests, I would suggest you either arrange to do it yourself and/or change your doctor.

    Good luck : Persevere and I hope you get good results.