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Addison's disease

  • Alternative Names

    Adrenocortical hypofunction; Chronic adrenocortical insufficiency; Primary adrenal insufficiency


    Symptoms
    • Changes in blood pressure or heart rate
    • Chronic diarrhea
    • Darkening of the skin - patchy skin color
    • Unnaturally dark color in some places
    • Paleness
    • Extreme weakness
    • Fatigue
    • Loss of appetite
    • Mouth lesions on the inside of a cheek (buccal mucosa)
    • Nausea and vomiting
    • Salt craving
    • Slow, sluggish movement
    • Unintentional weight loss

    Signs and tests

    Tests may show:

    • Increased potassium
    • Low blood pressure
    • Low cortisol level
    • Low serum sodium
    • Normal sex hormone levels

    Other tests may include:

    • Abdominal x-ray
    • Abdominal CT scan

    This disease may also change the results of the following tests:

    • 17-hydroxycorticosteroids
    • 17-ketosteroids
    • 24-hour urinary aldosterone excretion rate
    • ACTH
    • Aldosterone
    • Blood eosinophil count
    • CO2
    • Cortrosyn stimulation test
    • Potassium test
    • Renin
    • Urine cortisol