Dr. Teitelbaum's adrenal insufficiency guidelines and Cortef?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by hilfgirl33, Jan 16, 2003.

  1. hilfgirl33

    hilfgirl33 New Member

    Hi All,

    I haven't posted here in a while because I've been busy going to doctors to try and figure out what I have. I thought I had POTS and NMH, possibly chronic fatigue (had some of the markers, not all) and polycystic ovarian syndrome. Then my GYN called and said my FSH and LH were quite low and she felt I had some type of hypothalamic/pituitary insufficiency. She said this was not consistent with polycystic ovarian syndrome. Pituitary insufficiency can lead to adrenal and thyroid gland problems. My cardiologist also agreed that I have some sort of adrenal insufficiency. I have all the symptoms of Addison's/adrenal insufficiency that is secondary to a pituitary problem.

    My doc recommended I read Dr. Teitelbaum's book and although overwhelmed, found it very interesting. I still think I most closely have adrenal insufficiency symptoms.

    Here's the problem. I went to the endo and she gave me the ACTH stim test. My results were 20.9 baseline, 28.1 1/2 hour and 22.7 at 1 hour. The endo said this was perfectly fine. According to Dr. Teitelbaum's book, he felt you should increase by at least 7 at 1/2 hour and 11 at 1 hour, and reach at least 35.

    My cardiologist agrees with this and prescribed low dose Cortef. Has anyone tried this?

    I am very nervous about going on steroids but I think I am actually going to try them as I am sick of being sick and with my lab work coming back the way it did, it all seems to link into an adrenal problem, even though the endo said it was good.

    I hope this doesn't sound too confused, but I am very confused at this point.

    Anyone have any thoughts on Dr. Teitelbaum's plan or the Cortef treatments.

    Thanks for any help,


    P.S. My thyroid is also underactive according to the latest test (even the endo agreed), and this links into everything Teitelbaum is saying. Haven't started thyroid meds yet as they can cause a racing heart and palpitations and I have enough of that. I've decided to try Cortef first then ease into thyroid meds.

  2. sb439

    sb439 New Member

    hi Elaine,
    I went on low dose cortef about three months ago. My doctor suggested working up to 25mg, but I don't like taking high doses of anything Rx, so started with 5 and after a week went on 7.5 (5 in the morning, 2.5 at midday), and stopped there.
    Results: (1) before taking it I'd be very low emotionally and cry often, almost daily. Now this just doesn't happen. (2) overall I'm less stressed and feel physically better, not much, but I notice it. (1) was almost instantaneous, (2) I believe within a week or two of taking the stuff.

    Some of (2) may be due to other things I'm trying (mercury detox, neurofeedback, immunopro), but my gut feeling is the cortef is helping.
  3. sheelanagigs

    sheelanagigs New Member

    i read from fatigued to fantastic and i think my "stuff" is related to adrenal insufficiency; i have been saying this since 1986 when i was diagnosed...i have been trying the licorice he recommended and it is helping. my former MD wouldn't agree to labs and i decided i'd take the ambien and try the licorice--sleep at the time was my ditch to die in and MD didn't want to put me on ambien

    take care
  4. hilfgirl33

    hilfgirl33 New Member

    Thanks for the responses. It really seems like not to many have been tried on Cortef. I am going to be a guinea pig and do it. I wouldn't but I really feel my symptoms are so closely related to adrenal insufficiency, and I have the pituitary/period problems and the thyroid which is the HPA (hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis) that Dr. Teitelbaum talks about. I will keep you posted.