ACTH Stimulation Test

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Rain122865, Sep 3, 2003.

  1. Rain122865

    Rain122865 New Member

    My Doctor is scheduling me for this to check for Addisons Disease, has anyone ever had this test and if so what should I expect? He said that it is not a regular blood test and he has to make arrangements for it?
    Thanks Rain
  2. Rain122865

    Rain122865 New Member

    is there any side effects from whatever drug they use?
  3. Rain122865

    Rain122865 New Member

  4. ssMarilyn

    ssMarilyn New Member

    This is the most specific test for diagnosing Addison's disease. In this test, blood and/or urine cortisol levels are measured before and after a synthetic form of ACTH is given by injection. In the so called short, or rapid, ACTH test, cortisol measurement in blood is repeated 30 to 60 minutes after an intravenous ACTH injection. The normal response after an injection of ACTH is a rise in blood and urine cortisol levels.

    Patients with either form of adrenal insufficiency respond poorly or do not respond at all.

    When the response to the short ACTH test is abnormal, a "long" ACTH stimulation test is required to determine the cause of adrenal insufficiency. In this test, synthetic ACTH is injected either intravenously or intramuscularly over a 48- to 72-hour period, and blood and/or urine cortisol are measured the day before and during the 2 to 3 days of
    the injection. Patients with primary adrenal insufficiency do not produce cortisol during the 48- to 72-hour period; however, patients with secondary adrenal insufficiency have adequate responses to the test on the second or third day.

    In patients suspected of having an addisonian crisis, the doctor must begin treatment with injections of salt, fluids, and glucocorticoid hormones immediately. Although a reliable diagnosis is not possible while the patient is being treated, measurement of blood ACTH and cortisol during the crisis and before glucocorticoids are given is sufficient to make the diagnosis. Once the crisis is controlled and medication has been stopped, the doctor will delay further testing for up to 1 month to obtain an accurate diagnosis.

    Marilyn :)