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Old 07-25-2012, 10:50 AM   #1
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Exclamation PLEASE help with test results

symptoms: exhaustion (Im 33 years old), a "night owl", skin rashes, intense itching, low serum potassium ongoing, weight gain...more but not going to bother listing all.

Results: 8:17 am fasting
ACTH 30.7
7.2-63.3 pg/mL (7-10 AM)
Renin Activity 5.71
Adult: Upright: 1.31 - 3.95 ng/mL/h;Supine: 0.15-2.33 ng/mL/h
Aldosterone 5.6
>14 years: 0.0 - 30.0 ng/dL ~really? 0 can be an acceptable level???
CORTISOL 17.3ug/dL
7 am - 9 am: 4.3 - 22.4 ug/dL

SODIUM 140 136 - 145 mmol/L
POTASSIUM 3.6 3.5 - 5.1 mmol/L ~ taking prescription supplements
CHLORIDE 104 98 - 107 mmol/L
CO2 27 21 - 32 mmol/L
ANION GAP 9 5 - 15 mmol/L
BUN 7 7 - 18 mg/dL
CREATININE 0.9 0.6 - 1.0 mg/dL
BUN CREATININE RATIO 7.8 10 - 20 :1
GLUCOSE 94 70 - 99 mg/dL
CALCIUM 8.9 8.5 - 10.1 mg/dL


Any imput??? These were test all conducted at same visit...

 
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Old 07-25-2012, 11:38 AM   #2
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Re: PLEASE help with test results

Doesn't look like you have an adrenal issue. Your ACTH & cortisol levels are fine.. these would be the two that would clearly indicate adrenal insufficiency. Also, there is usually very low sodium with high potassium. Addisonians tend to excrete sodium and retain potassium. However, low aldosterone levels can contribute to fatigue. Do you crave/enjoy salty foods? Do you urinate frequently? If so, I would discuss this with your doc. You can take a med called fludrocortisone which will increase aldosterone levels, and help you to hold onto sodium.

I'm sure you are frustrated, as you are so young and there are sooooo many things that can cause exhaustion. Hang in there, listen to your body, be gentle with yourself, and don't push it. I started to get sick at your age (I'm 40 now) and if I could go back to that time, I would've slowed down and taken better care of myself. Get plenty of rest, light/relaxing exercise & yoga, and really watch what you eat. This has such a HUGE impact on our overall health and wellbeing. Avoid sugars, avoid caffeine, avoid too many refined carbohydrates, avoid fast foods, and get plenty of fresh foods, good protein, the right fats, etc. ... I don't mean to preach, but truly, a healthful diet can be incredibly healing and energizing! Again, don't push yourself. Allow your body what it needs to chill out and heal.

Take care... wishing you the best.

Sincerely,
Mollie

 
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Old 07-25-2012, 11:43 AM   #3
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Re: PLEASE help with test results

thank you sooo much! Do u know why aldosterone range can be 0? (0-30) would 0 be "normal"?

 
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Old 07-25-2012, 12:44 PM   #4
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Re: PLEASE help with test results

I cannot imagine how aldosterone could be "0" and be "in range"... that makes no sense to me. We have to have aldosterone. I think you want to be somewhere in the middle of the reference range. Unfortunately, most docs don't consider this, and if you are anywhere in the range (even if it's low) they don't address it. If I can give you any advice, do not completely rely on traditional doctors for your guidance and care. Unfortunately, my experience has been that most traditional doctors do not take the time needed to truly help with the multitude of things going on with a fatigue-based illness.

I live in California and have seen every endocrinologist in this area, and none of them have been of much help. They have so little knowledge of and experience with Adrenal Insufficiency. I have often felt as though I were teaching them about my illness. Anyway, listen to your body, and pay close attention to your mind and soul too (these play a huge part in healing and wellness)... honor your needs, and seek out help from alternative practitioners if you can.

Oftentimes, you can get great help and advice from Holistic Chiropractors. Many of them here have a lot of knowledge of fatigue-based illnesses and how to go about healing (diet, supplements, relaxation techniques, massage,acupuncture, etc)

There are so many different healing modalities... I have just found that most western docs are very "in the box" and only look at basic blood work for their answers. Many of them have very little understanding of the mind-body connection and how it relates to, and how it can create illness. And trust me, I've lived with this sometimes frightening life-threatening illness for 8 years now, and I am here to tell all of them that the mind and emotions play a HUGE role in our physical health!

OK- off my soapbox. Obviously something I've grown to feel very passionate about.

- Mollie

 
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Old 07-25-2012, 07:40 PM   #5
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Re: PLEASE help with test results

I just got the results of my acth. I wasn't told anything but that my ACTH is 10.2. Doctor said it was borderline but they aren't treating it as of yet. I've been feeling pretty nasty but tests I've had before, if it's one notch over normal they tell you it's okay.

 
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Old 07-25-2012, 08:45 PM   #6
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Re: PLEASE help with test results

Yes, that is very true. I guess I feel my aldosterone is low...I do not see Dr until next week. HATE that! The Renin is high too and when I called she said it was "normal~even a little high". whatever that means? Maybe low has more ramifications? Im seeing from research elevated renin may be due to low blood pressure, which I seem to have. Not LOW...but lower. I have the bp of an athlete except I am not an athlete.
My ATCH was right smack dab in the middle so I assume I am ok there. Atch is compared to cortisol results too, I know that...
Feeling like crap sucks! DO you think so many people in their 30s and 40s felt like this 30 years ago? it seems to me like the "complaints" I have are so common among women in my age group. What is the common denominator here? Why are so many of us ill and unable to get a diagnosis? I have test after test and I am healthy as an ox! NOTHING is ever off...and I am always amazed. How can I feel so horrible? My septum even seems to have eroded...I now have a perforated AND deviated septum... I am so weak and dizzy I feel as though I will faint often...when I stand, I have to wait a bit so my knees stop shaking and feeling weak and my vision comes back. I am not sleepy, I am freekin EXHAUSTED...as though I ran a marathon. I am not lazy, by all means, but no marathons here! I do have 4 children but I am not working. I havent in 6 years. When I WAS working...I didnt have the strength to take a shower even first thing in the morning...I bathed. I literally was too tired...even upon waking. I guess I have to settle for the fibromyalgia my dr is suggesting....but I really dont believe it.
So frustrating!

 
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Old 07-25-2012, 08:46 PM   #7
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Re: PLEASE help with test results

Yes, that is very true. I guess I feel my aldosterone is low...I do not see Dr until next week. HATE that! The Renin is high too and when I called she said it was "normal~even a little high". whatever that means? Maybe low has more ramifications? Im seeing from research elevated renin may be due to low blood pressure, which I seem to have. Not LOW...but lower. I have the bp of an athlete except I am not an athlete.
My ATCH was right smack dab in the middle so I assume I am ok there. Atch is compared to cortisol results too, I know that...
Feeling like crap sucks! DO you think so many people in their 30s and 40s felt like this 30 years ago? it seems to me like the "complaints" I have are so common among women in my age group. What is the common denominator here? Why are so many of us ill and unable to get a diagnosis? I have test after test and I am healthy as an ox! NOTHING is ever off...and I am always amazed. How can I feel so horrible? My septum even seems to have eroded...I now have a perforated AND deviated septum... I am so weak and dizzy I feel as though I will faint often...when I stand, I have to wait a bit so my knees stop shaking and feeling weak and my vision comes back. I am not sleepy, I am freekin EXHAUSTED...as though I ran a marathon. I am not lazy, by all means, but no marathons here! I do have 4 children but I am not working. I havent in 6 years. When I WAS working...I didnt have the strength to take a shower even first thing in the morning...I bathed. I literally was too tired...even upon waking. I guess I have to settle for the fibromyalgia my dr is suggesting....but I really dont believe it.
So frustrating!

 
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Old 07-25-2012, 09:05 PM   #8
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Re: PLEASE help with test results

The weak, dizzy and faint thing is definitely related to your aldosterone levels. Are you thirsty a lot? Do you crave salty foods?

And have you had your thyroid checked out? How are all of your other hormones? Estrogen & Progesterone.. what are your menstrual cycles like? normal? PMS? Balanced hormones are key for energy ...

Exhaustion is so frustrating and can be depressing .. hang in there. You will figure it out and find some relief. Believe that...


- Mollie

 
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Old 07-25-2012, 09:05 PM   #9
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Re: PLEASE help with test results

I hope they find answers for you? Have they looked into chronic Fatigue?

I will wait out further testing as the doctor did say they have to keep an eye on my borderline levels. Are you being seen by an endocrinoligist or by a family doctor? So far my family doctor is handling it.

 
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Old 07-25-2012, 10:35 PM   #10
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Re: PLEASE help with test results

This began 6 years ago, Ive lost all hope I will figure it out eventually. Every Dr thinks I am depressed because of some PQ9 test....All 5 or 6 questions ask basically if u enjoy life. NO, I dont, I have none. If I make plans I often have to cancel because I am too exhausted to go...Ive learned to just not make plans. If I HAVE to do something, I have to take it easy the day before/morning of. I have a family dr, have seen a rheumotoligist~ who said I had fibro although I had no tenderness in any spot he touched. These test were run by an Endo...What I posted, is what she tested for...no other hormones. I was told all these results are normal so I assume she is not scheduling anymore tests. Seeing the Endo was my last ditch effort before giving up...and by "giving up" i mean Ill accept a Fibro/CFS diagnosis but I dont for one second believe that is my issue. Fibro is said to be a patient who is "overly" sensitive to normal pain~ I delivered 4 children without drugs, walked out the following day and drove myself home. I had gallstones at 18 (in bile ducts too) and was having attacks. I thought it was heartburn, my surgeon was amazed I had them for so long before seeking treatment. I have a high pain tolerance. I dont have fibro. CFS~ I dont even know what that is diagnostically...hypersomnia, I guess? Maybe, but I feel like other symptoms (such as septum) point to something much more "medical". I know Fibro and CSF are classified now as real but most drs will admit its what they tell a person when they can find no other cause for the symptoms. Personally, I feel they do not look very hard. I have seen many Drs and none of them think creatively, they run the basic tests..over and over and over (ESR, CRP, ANA, CBC, metobolic Panel and thyroid) Blah! I passed them all and was pronounced healthy.

T4 THYROXINE, FREE (0.5-1.5 ng/d)l 0.60 0.60 0.50 0.70 0.85
TSH (0.34-4.82 uIU/ml) 1.284 0.996 1.140 2.230 0.97 1.08 1.180 1.25
FREE T3 2.5-3.9 pg/ml 3.00
Thyroglobulin Antibodies = <20, Normal Range = <=40
TPO Antibody = 12, Normal Range = <=35

REPEATEDLY assured my thyroid looks great (thyroid issues on both sides of my family~mom and half sisters (dads).

Weakness, fainting, dizziness and Aldosterone...Although I havent seen the Dr since results came back, her nurse assured me she had spoken to the dr and all looked great. Aldosterone is within normal range and renin is only slightly elevated. Things have to be pretty out of whack for the Dr to pick up on them I did start taking a Liver support medication~ having had gallbladder issues so young, the intense all over itching...and my alk phos levels, although completely in the normal range still, had a major increase a few years ago...almost doubled...its a wide "normal range". I dont notice any difference. I also have low Vitamin D~which I am supplementing w prescription Vit D. My vit B level is "normal" but low end so I also supplement that. I take a high quality multi vitamin. I dont have a regular work out routine because Im too exhausted just "living" but I do walk when I feel up to it, it doesnt make me feel better, it leaves me tired for 2 days.
Sorry for my rants...It just feels hopeless. The rheumy told me this is how I would feel forever and to learn to accept it and deal. ~ ugh!

 
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Old 07-28-2012, 10:26 PM   #11
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Re: PLEASE help with test results

I've had Addison's since I was 17, also diabetic , and have heart issues .. in all my yrs of dealing with this disease I've only once had a ACTH level test done and that was when I was diagnosed . My other doctors have done the test but were then advised it wasn't necessary because you'll never have an accurate reading.. Just some info I've gotten over the years ..

Last edited by Administrator; 08-03-2012 at 10:34 AM.

 
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Old 08-02-2012, 04:26 PM   #12
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Good luck!

Last edited by mcmarie123; 08-03-2012 at 12:50 PM. Reason: Trying to remove

 
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