Originally Posted by Chrisgj
Don't pay much attention to those ranges for cortisol on the labs sheet as they are taken from sick people. Health people don't usually have their cortisol tested.
Where do you get this idea from?
As somebody working in medical research I have to disagree. The normal ranges are based on cortisol test results from healthy people!
Of course, healthy people normally do not get their cortisol levels tested but in order for a test to be approved by the FDA a study has to determine the range levels in healthy individuals (besides other things). Then a statistical analysis gives you the approximate range.
So the values are pretty much what you can expect in healthy people. BUT! rwk is right that a single draw does not necessarily mean much. It can basically only detect extremly high or low values ( I had basically 0 when I was tested first). Only an ACTH test can give definitve answers as to the functioning of the adrenal cortex (even I had one, although my initial levels were pretty clear).