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Old 01-20-2010, 03:54 PM   #1
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Exclamation First Time Testing AM Cortisol, Test Back

I had went to my regular doctor because I have a ton of other new symptoms autoimmune, but not totally thyroid related. One of them was the development of 30-50 + new moles on my body in places I have never had moles. They developed in a short period of time.

My doctor tested my AM cortisol, using a blood test, after talk to a dermatology friend of hers because she suggested rapid development of moles can be adrenal related.

Typical, I get a phone call from a medical assistant or nurse exclaiming, "Everything's look fine!"

I got my copy I requested in the mail today, here is the result:

AM Cortisol (blood test) Me: 21.2 Reference Range: 4.3 - 22.4

My blood was drawn at 8:15 AM

Gee, it seems to me that maybe if I went in an hour earlier my test would be "abnormal." I am bordering right on the stinkin line and it kills me that when I exhibit insane symptoms and my test is almost basically abnormal, these doctors take the lab test so literal and disregard all of my symptoms.

I am however, going to take my copy to my thyroid endo appt. tomorrow and see what she says.

Does my cortisol seem high to you?!?!?!?

 
Old 01-20-2010, 04:12 PM   #2
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Re: First Time Testing AM Cortisol, Test Back

It actually should be at the higher end of range for an AM cortisol, but we all know that serum cortisol testing is a lousy way to test for adrenal fatigue. You could have been anxious when the phlebotomist came at you with that needle or for any other reason and that will spike your cortisol reading.
If you really want to know what your adrenals are doing get yourself a saliva cortisol test. That's far more sensitive than a blood test.

 
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Old 01-20-2010, 09:55 PM   #3
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Re: First Time Testing AM Cortisol, Test Back

Thanks, I guess I misunderstood the test then. I have to check everyone out, because they always say everything is "just fine" even if some labs are abnormal.

I am getting to the point where I am thinking I am crazy. No tests ever come back to confirm anything and no one believes me anymore. It is like once a test is "normal" then the doctors just disregard my symptoms.

The only condition I ever had confirmation on is my thyroid disease and I have had antibodies for both Graves and Hashimotos. I haven't have elevated Graves since last summer.

I have an endo appt. tomorrow and I should be able to snag my first prescription for natural desiccated hormones i.e. Nature-throid. Other than that, I am at the point of giving up.

I guess I have 30-50+ moles develop within a month or so for no reason, I guess it is just my imagination, right? I am hypo, but I have had loose stools and descriptions that fit gluten intolerance or Celiac, but my tests come back "just fine." I have weight loss of 12+ pounds and I am already small. Of course, finally, I have major joint pain in my hands, toes, wrists and now my neck, but I can't get a positive test for RF, rhematoid arthritis. Go figure I must be one of those people that will be serro-negative or it is too early yet. Yes, I am venting, but I have taken a serious downfall since November with my new symptoms and previous symptoms only worsening, but no help. All tests come back "just fine!"

I was "normal" a year ago before my immune system turned on and my thyroid disease began. Now, I have been reduced to looking and sounding like a sick maniac because my tests come back "just fine."

Ugh.

Last edited by AlexaIn2006; 01-20-2010 at 10:00 PM.

 
Old 01-21-2010, 04:11 AM   #4
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Re: First Time Testing AM Cortisol, Test Back

I definitely feel your pain here. I bounced around from specialist to specialist with all normal tests (including my thyroid) for over three years before I finally figured out how to interpret the thyroid tests correctly (and that damned TSH). I've got the same joint pains as well and am seronegative for any rheumy stuff. I've grown to hate the medical term, "non-specific symptoms" which was used to describe me over and over again. I finally realized that my symptoms were absolutely specific for hypothyroidism and adrenal fatigue but that doctors have forgotten how to diagnose this.
Sometimes the only way to really rule out celiac is to go gluten-free for several weeks. It sounds like that may be something you should try. Not everyone shows up positive on the tests (and did you have all 6 of the antibody tests or did your doc just do a few of them?).
It will be great to get the prescription for the desiccated. This is a start for you anyway. But you really need to make sure your adrenals are functional so take the effort to order that saliva test (the Canary Club has the best price for 24 hr diurnal tests) and at some point I'd recommend you get your reverse T3 tested as well. And I assume you're ok with ferritin, vitamin D and B12 levels? They have to be good for this to work too.

 
Old 01-21-2010, 04:31 AM   #5
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Re: First Time Testing AM Cortisol, Test Back

When you mentioned your moles that caught my attetion. I had the same thing happen to me over a short period of time, pretty much just on my torso. They are lighter than a typical mole, but I notice now they seem to be receding. I remember months ago that at times they were even itchy.

Okay, cortisol. Like Javelina said, best to do the 24-hour saliva test. My study showed normal/high normal first thing in the AM, below normal at noon and 6 PM, then coming back up at bedtime. I took this to a new MD who then did aldosterone along with some other tests. That was also low normal, barely in range. I am supposed to see an endo for an ACTH Feb 1. I have to say though that after five months of symptoms similar to yours, fatigue, weight loss, etc., I feel like I turned the corner last week and am coming out of this. Appetite is coming back along with weight, exercise tolerance is back. Still horribly tired at night along with low body temp. The internal medicine MD I saw has an understanding of adrenal issues and says it gets "very complicated". She referred me to an endo because apparently the ACTH needs to be done by him. I actually canceled my first appt with him because I did not read good reviews but my IM MD said to trust her, that he will listen to her. I will play along I suppose.

 
Old 01-21-2010, 09:20 AM   #6
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Re: First Time Testing AM Cortisol, Test Back

Sparkie and Alexa, Your post about the moles caught my eye. Is it possible that they are not moles at all but "Molluscum contagiosum". Molluscum contagiosum is a viral skin infection that causes raised,
pearl-like papules or nodules on the skin. One of my kids had this once and it DID look like new moles that all of a sudden appeared!! If you DO have this, do NOT let anyone talk you into having them removed. They DO disappear on their own once the virus runs its course. Just a thought........Hoppy

 
Old 01-21-2010, 02:37 PM   #7
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Re: First Time Testing AM Cortisol, Test Back

The moles I have are flat, more freckle like. I got Armour today though.....

 
Old 01-23-2010, 05:24 AM   #8
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Re: First Time Testing AM Cortisol, Test Back

I noticed that all the "moles" I had so suddenly are now gone. They weren't pearl-like but light brown to reddish brown, not particulary dense in color. Interesting that they have all gone away. I had probably the same number of these develop as you but mine appeared to be confined to my abdomen/torso. Let us know how you are doing on Armour. I again encourage you to get a 24-hour cortisol since weight loss is a sign of adrenal insufficiency. I am not sure of the wisdom of treating thyroid alone without treating adrenal insufficiency.....Javelina would be better able to address this.

 
Old 01-24-2010, 01:14 AM   #9
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Re: First Time Testing AM Cortisol, Test Back

Sparkie, you said you turned the corner and are finally feeling better, how did you do it?

 
Old 01-24-2010, 07:59 AM   #10
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Re: First Time Testing AM Cortisol, Test Back

Well, I thought I had turned the corner. I was patient with myself and did gentler exercise and incorporating more salt into my diet helped a lot. I had been feeling much better. Temp rising, appetite picking up, tolerating exercise great, so I thought. Since I had been feeling so much better I thought I would attempt to run again, albeit venturing back into it very slowly. Last Sunday I ran 1.5 miles, no problems. Wed I ran 3.2, felt terrific! I am sure I am all better! Fri I ran 3.2 again. The run was fine but I have felt like a bucket of yuck since. Back to very low body temp, tremors, etc. Per my new IM MD, I see a new endo MD in a week who is supposed to evaluate the low aldosterone and I think she mentioned him doing an ACTH stim test to see if the pituitary is playing a role. This totally sucks.

 
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