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  • Serum Coritsol test

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    Old 04-23-2013, 03:53 PM   #1
    dorri
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    Serum Coritsol test

    My doctor is sending me for a serum cortisol test? The last couple of times it was for an ACTH test where I had to have it first thing in the morning before 8 am and then at 5 pm. Is the Serum cortisol blood test the same, or can it be taken anytime of the day? do I need to fast for this blood test?

    Last edited by dorri; 04-23-2013 at 04:02 PM.

     
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    Old 09-18-2013, 08:58 PM   #2
    Lola2014
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    Smile Re: Serum Coritsol test

    I just had one done this past Monday. Had to be done at exactly 8 am when the levels are supposed to be highest and again at 4 pm.

    They came in at 5.6 in the morning, which they said was normal and 6.9 at 4 pm. But my testosterone was less than 2 (female) and my DHEA was 39. My thyroid was .09 and yet the only ones that were abnormal they said were the testosterone and the DHEA was at the bottom. It is SO weird how different labs have different ranges.

    From what I see here, a DHEA of 39 is really pretty low. I see people here posting DHEA readings in the triple digits and ranges that start much higher than 39 for the low end. I am so confused!

    Good luck with your cortisol tests. Hope they gave you the following instructions... be sure to avoid all carbohydrates for 24-48 hours prior to the test. Avoid stress and strenuous exercise and get plenty of sleep. Also avoid caffeine. These can alter test results. I had caffeine (a little) and my husband stressed me out so much on the way to the test because he thought he knew a faster way and that made us 10 minutes late. I was told if I was one minute later, they would cancel the test because the lab would reject it. REALLY important to have be there on time!

    Let me know how your test results come out. Hope you get a fast diagnosis. For me it has been a nightmare! But finally going to an endo... so hopefully will get an answer to the madness :-)

     
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    Old 09-19-2013, 09:33 PM   #3
    dorri
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    Re: Serum Coritsol test

    I don't think any of my tests were taken at exactly 8 am. The clinic around here and downtown do not open until 8:30 am. The one clinic tries to get me in soon after, and the other was close to 9 am. They both said that it's okay, they just chart the cortisol levels at a later time. However, the last few tests all showed the same, borderline cortisol levels. I have some symptoms that may be related to cortisol insufficiency. I guess if it's meant to be, one of these days, they will find it if the level has dropped below the border. As far as I seen my test was for cortisol alone and did not include testosterone, or DHEA.

    I had no idea to avoid carbs for 24 to 48 hours. What can you eat? Lol, can see a husband stressing you out. Does that raise the levels or lower them?

     
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    Old 09-20-2013, 02:01 AM   #4
    Lola2014
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    Red face Re: Serum Coritsol test

    Best test is supposed to do 24 hr urine cortisol cause levels fluctuate so much. but for blood tests like we had Lemme see... From what I read and what my doc said the following will raise your cortisol: caffeine, sugar/carbs, stress, lack of sleep, certain meds .... I think it was steroids like in an asthma inhaler, and exercise. Mine were borderline low but not low enough to show "abnormal." but i had caffeine, lack of sleep and super duper stress just before test. They did say my adrenal glands werent working right and referred me to an endo and that my DHEA was low but I read the ranges and the lowest was 30... I was 39?!? But that doesnt seem that low. These darn levels can fluctuate so much throughout the day and so many factors can affect the results. I think without the stress and lack of sleep (anxiety about test!!!) it would have shown much lower. plus i am on steroids for asthma and emphysema but dr neglected to tell me you have to stop that 2 days before. Ugh. I am about ready to give up but the blood pressure dropping to 69/36 and making me so dizzy I cannot stand plus this really super fast weight loss and the body and facial hair that just disappeared and the ravenous cravings for salty stuff is so weird and spooky. I dunno. The dr i originally went to wasnt even going to do tests. Just blew me off as a hypochondriac (my regular doc who Would know how abnormal this all is for me retired early to raise her kids!!!) he finally relented and sure enough two abnormal tests. But they have NO clue how to proceed and I fear if I get a bad endo too they will not takenright tests or give me correct prep info i will be sent home with aspirin and an enema! Lol

     
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    Old 09-20-2013, 05:12 PM   #5
    dorri
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    Re: Serum Coritsol test

    Sorry you are having to go thru so much without definite answers. I too have low blood pressure, dizzy spells, weight loss, tire very easily and have a lot more diarrhea than I had before. However I do not have facial hair. I crave salty foods, but somewhat less now than before. Before I had to have extra salt every day to satisfy my cravings. You are right though, not all doctors are too familiar with low cortisol, and will sometimes miss it in their patients, even in hospitals. As for the endo. I asked my General doctor if he would refer me to an endo and he asked what for, saying I've already been off the prednisone for 2 years and don't need one. He said since I've been on pred for many years, (30+) then it may take many years for my gland to return back to normal. So many times I've thought, what if it doesn't, what if he is wrong and it never really returns to normal?

    Also with you being on steroids, you probably won't get a definite result until you have been off steroids for some time. I was getting tests while I was on prednisone and my tests were always okay. Now that I'm off for 2 years, the borderline is showing. If you are borderline low already while taking steroids for the asthma and emphysema, then I have to wonder how low your levels would be like if you weren't taking anything. However, because you really need the medication for your conditions, I would not advise you going off without permission from a doctor. Good luck. Keep us posted.

     
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