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    Old 01-23-2005, 10:18 AM   #1
    mletters's Avatar
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    Is this Adrenal Exhaustion?

    Hi, I have enclosed my ASI results in this post. I normally post over on the CFS board. I have ordered the books you kindly recommended.
    Can this thing correct itself on its own? If so, how long would it take?
    I'm scared to take anything thyroid meds, as I've heard that you are on them for life once you start. Would you take something like Armour for Adrenal probems or is it just Thyroid? Kind Regards, Mike.

    Can anyone relate to these symptoms?

    Approx a year and a half ago, I started to feel dizzy when leaning forward. I have never been the same since that day. It also started as a kind of brain fog/pressure behind the eyes and in the forehead. When this comes on, it makes me feel stupid (sounds stupid I know). Then came the tinnitus and the insomnia. Since then I have never slept a solid 8 hours since. I have been given a Brain MRI which is normal (Dec 04), every blood test known to man. I have seen numerous specialists (GP's, Neuro, ENT, Rheumatologist etc). Neuro and Rheum has dx CFS/M.E. Thing is, the symptom pattern just doesn't fit. I am still able to work full time. The anxiety, panic and depression are totally out of control. It is destroying me.

    The main symptoms started last September then died off a little from Jan to Nov and then started again. I have been dx with Carpal Tunnel and TMJ. The symptoms of this are frightening. I have nightmares and very vivid dreams (sometimes I almost feel awake and asleep if that makes any sense!) - I can be asleep for a few hours but it doesn't feel like I've been asleep at all, broken sleep (no problem getting to sleep but always wake up around 5:30 - 6am, tinnitus, carpal tunnel, anxiety with panic, depression, lowed back pain, sore throat, burning eyes, nervousness, testicular pain, servere short term memory loss, clumsiness, inflamed tip of nostril, flatulance, belching, stage 4 sleep deprevation, pressure in forehead and behind eyes, brain fog, pains in back of head/neck, traces of blood in saliva, yellow phlegm, cold hands/feet. The worst feeling of all is as though I'm going mad and loosing my mind. I can't seem to make new memories, and I just get random thoughts of the past in my head for no reason (asleep or awake!).
    Whenever I lie down at night, it seems to be worse. The back of my head hurts, my neck hurts and I get headaches in my forehead. Then I begin to panic, thinking I've got something seriously wrong with my brain.
    My thyroid results have come back as normal (TSH, T3 T4). Recently I had a hair mineral test which came back as normal. The ASI Saliva test is slightly more worrying.

    Here are the results :


    Cortisol Levels

    Result Ref Limits
    Sample 1 (07:00 - 08:00) 17.0 12 - 22

    Sample 2 (11:00 - 12:00) 6.5 4-8

    Sample 3 (16:00 - 17:00) 4.1 3-7

    Sample 4 (23:00 - 00:00) 0.5 1-3

    DHEA Levels

    Sample 1am 2.21 0.3 - 0.7

    Sample 3pm 1.65 0.3 - 0.7

    DHEA : Cortisol Ratio 7.9 0.8 - 3.5

    Adrenal Stress Type: Inappropriate DHEA response. Generally indicates excessive adrenal fatigue along with the use of exogenous DHEA. It might also represent a recent and/or rapid plunge of cortisol levels after been excessively elevated from over stimulation over a long period of time.
    A Low midnight cortisol is suggestive of suboptimal adrenal functioning. DHEA levels are elevated, reflecting elevated ACTH with an imbalanced response from the adrenals. This could be due either to an inappropriate DHEA response or to some external stimulii (eg drugs, hormone supplementation, treatments to increase adrenal function).


    I have been to see my GP and showed him the results. He is going to refer me to an endrocologist. Will they just look at my thyroid or can they adress adrenal exhaustion too?

    What can I take to try and fight this? My diet is very good and I am taking vitamin suppliments. I don't drink, dont smoke, dont drink fizzy pop, don't really get enough excercise (related to depression - always just want to sit around except when I have to go to work!).

    The most upsetting thing about this is that I have a beautiful 2 year old son and a Wife who I love more than anything, but I feel that I am destroying their life too!, I can't seem to live in the present or look forward to any future. When I do, I just panic thinking the worst (terminal illness, not being able to function, can't even picture a future).

    I know I have overdone it with negative thinking over the past few years (I didn't want to have children and I didn't (and still don't know why) - think it was because I was abused when I was younger, I am a bit of a loner (don't have any close friends). This is due to having 2 jobs and a business. Since being bullied at School, I always felt the need to proove I could be good at something, so I have acheived a lot (big house, flash car etc.). I would give it ALL up instantly just to have my health back.

    I pray to god that I get answers soon, as I don't think I am strong enough to carry on much longer. I'm sorry for sounding so negative but I feel so down at the moment.

    Thankyou for listening,

    God bless,


    Last edited by moderator2; 03-09-2005 at 04:22 PM.

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    Old 01-23-2005, 11:44 AM   #2
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    Re: Is this Adrenal Exhaustion?


    Relax. While I was reading about your situation, I could not help but think of my own situation. I too am being tested for Adrenal Insufficiency / Hemochromatosis. I've been to a dozen doctors (Infectious Disease, GI, Urologist, IM.. now Endocrinologist).

    My fear is .. I contracted an Infectious Disease...and passed along to the Mrs (who I love along w/ my children). I too would trade everything I own...for my health. I'm 43 and have lived an active and healthy life. My problems occured this summer.

    An endocrine test was done back in Sept. My results were: TSH - 2.78, Free T 4 - 1.15, Free T4 Index - 2.7. For some reason, liver enzymes are high AST / ALT at 47 /88. Late last week, I was tested for Cortosil levels, Adrenal, etc. We'll see.

    I'm very dry. Dry skin, dry hands, mouth and eyes. Do you experience the same?

    Lastly, if it is adrenal burnout - I will have to take supplements / meds which I hear work well and allow you to live a normal life w/ normal life expectancy. The positive hear (among the negative) a renewed focus on things that matter to me -- my family.

    I'll share my lab results w/ you when I find out (hopefully Monday or Tuesday).


    Last edited by moderator2; 03-09-2005 at 04:18 PM.

    Old 01-24-2005, 02:40 AM   #3
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    Re: Is this Adrenal Exhaustion?

    Hi Mranxiety,

    That's strange. My ALT level is elevated too! I also have dry skin (inbetween fingers and forehead the worst!).

    The only positive tests I've had out of the millions of tests are :

    Carpal Tunnel (Mild positive R/Hand/Arm, V.Early Mild L/hand/Arm)
    CFS/M.E (with Fybromyalgia) - Dx by Rheumo and Clinical Immunologist
    TMJ - by maxillofacial consultant
    Adrenal fatigue (IDWL labs) - Midnight Cortisol low with Elevated DHEA response.
    Hypoention (BP drops when standing)

    My anxiety/panic/fear is WAY out of control. I feel as though i'm in control one minute and then out of nowhere, it feels like a depressive episode. I don't want to talk to anyone, cant concentrate and then it goes again. It's the strangest feeling in the world. I am a normally anxious person anyway but not to this extent!

    The Adrenal thing fits perfectly. Thing is, I'm scared that if an Endro does put me on Thyroid meds, I'll be on them for life. But, I suppose it's better than going through life like this.

    Do you get the forehead pressure, neck/back of head pain and headaches that only last minutes? It's WEIRD!

    Take care,


    Last edited by moderator2; 03-09-2005 at 04:18 PM.

    Old 03-09-2005, 12:36 PM   #4
    Join Date: Mar 2005
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    aslo HB User
    Re: Is this Adrenal Exhaustion?

    Mike, I hope you are still around. I have similar symptoms in some respect and was wondering if you had a diagnosis or hopefully are feeling better.
    My symptoms however include colitis like symptoms, very mucousy soft stool(sorry)
    as well as neck pain, neuropathy in the arms legs, burning feet etc. palpitations.Belching. Pressure around the solar plexus.Gi scope, colonoscopy negative.
    Like you I am a nervous wreck. What really struck a cord, is the flashbacks. I keep seeing short scenes of me and my family somewhere, like it will never happen again, and I think I am dying. This has been going on for one year. I cant take ssri's or such.
    All my bloodwork looks fine. I was also wondering about Lyme. Any news?

    And I hope you are healthy.

    Last edited by moderator2; 03-09-2005 at 04:17 PM.

    Old 03-10-2005, 01:25 AM   #5
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    Re: Is this Adrenal Exhaustion?

    Hi Also,

    I am still around and unfortunately still suffering... My symptoms died down or went into remission from Feb 04 until Oct and then came back with avengance. I have all the symptoms listed above. I also am intolerant of AD's. Not quite sure why it's just SSRI's though? After a bit of research, it could be because my body is producing too much Seretonin (which can also cause/add to fatigue!?).

    Another thing which I've heard about Adrenal Fatigue is that your body isn't making enough of the chemicals in your body and the AD's is just using up what little your body has? Appologies if i've got this incorrect.

    I'm waiting to see an Endocrinologist soon so I will let you know how I get on.

    I too have a feeling I may have Lyme disease as I have a lot of Lyme symptoms plus discoloured sputum (phlegm) which goes from clear white frothy to horrible yellow/grey/black sometimes with traces of blood. Worries me quite a bit, but the doctors have done a culture on it and nothing came of it.

    I also tested neg. for Boriella bergdorferi and western blot so Immunoligist didn't dx Lyme but the Rheumo did (without running tests - or was he basing his dx on symptoms?).

    Let me know how you get on.

    Take Care,


    P.S I can't go a day without thinking about my symptoms and illness, but it is most definately NOT hypochondriosis. I am only depressed because of my condition! I used to be the most optomistic person ever before all of this!

    Old 03-10-2005, 06:54 AM   #6
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    Re: Is this Adrenal Exhaustion?

    Glad you are still around. Also glad you had a period of relief anyway, or partial relief.
    After rereading I guess our symptoms are not that alike, but do have similarities. Mine are colitis symptoms, and mostly neuropathy, pins and needles, numbness, muscle twitches, palpitations, migraine etc. I also cannot take simple meds i used to take before, even pepto bismol doesnt agree with me. We certainly have panic/depression in common. Also we are both crazy about our families, I love my daughter so much its scary, and have guilt for what its doing to them.
    Did anything unusual happen in your life right before all of this started?
    I too am a very content person, and very happy with my life in general. I want it back.
    Im sure you know, but panic disorder itself can really mess up your body. It starts whats known as bad biology. Release of adrenaline, cortisol, shifting your blood to places it shouldnt be etc. {removed}On an internet anxiety site A good percentage of posters are people with tingling, numbness, strange infections etc. All from panic disorder. I dont think this is all my problem, or yours, but anything is possible.
    So did anything unusual happen right before all these symptoms? Just curious.
    Wishing you a 80 year remission.


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    Last edited by aslo; 03-10-2005 at 12:42 PM.

    Old 03-10-2005, 06:22 PM   #7
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    Re: Is this Adrenal Exhaustion?

    Hi Aslo and mletters.

    I have Lyme disease and a thyroid disorder. Regarding thyroid testing, please realize that even if your results are in the normal range, they may not be normal for you. I highly recommend that you get a thyroid panel done. Make sure the Free T3, Free T4 (in addition to the T3 and T4) and antibody testing are done in addition to the normal thyroid tests. The ones listed are not always run but are necessary for a comprehensive view. I suggest that you get copies of your results and post them on the thyroid board at this site. The people there are wonderful and can help you interpret them.

    Regarding Lyme disease, no test is completely reliable. Many people who have Lyme test negative. Lyme disease is the second fastest growing infectious disease in the US after AIDS and it is in every state. Many doctors do not understand Lyme and treat with outdated protocols. Besides Lyme ticks can transmit several co-infections including Babesiosis, Ehrlichiosis (HME & HGE), Bartonella, and Mycoplasma. Many people who have Lyme are co-infected. It is important to use a Lyme reputable lab such as IgeneX in Palo Alto, CA for testing these diseases.

    Make sure you get copies of all testing. Although the CDC requires a large number of bands to show for the Western Blot to be considered positive, many Lyme doctors focus on which bands show. Some are specific for Lyme. The majority of people who test positive do not get all the bands required by the CDC. The CDC also states that a negative test does not rul out Lyme disease! No easy answers.

    When tickborne illnesses are a possibility, it is very important to see a knowledgable doctor. A knowledgeable doctor will consider your entire history and rely solely on tests results. If you tell me where you are located, I will tell you of the closest Lyme doctor to you that I know of. For more information on Lyme disease, see the "Lyme Disease Information" post on the Lyme board at this site. I post there frequently so if I can help you further, just let me know.

    Do not give up! I know what it is like to be sick and unable to get any answers. You know your body better than anyone. Keep searching, you will find out what is wrong.

    Last edited by ticker; 03-10-2005 at 06:25 PM.

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