I have a pituitary problem. It is extremely difficult to get a diagnosis--BTW. The stim test should've been done early morning and sitting for the whole test, if not, that will change the result. I "passed" the stim test too. After the ACTH injection, my cortisol doubled in a hour and the doctor said I was fine. Fine? I don't think so. Some people who pass the stim test do have good adrenals but they can not work because ACTH is low. Once ACTH is injected, the adrenals can now work. Sometimes, the adrenals can triple/quadruple cortisol levels and doctors have no idea what they're looking at. (ACTH deficiency-pituitary problem).
I had an MRI in March, it's not that bad. My IGF-1,growth hormone(another pituitary hormone) is extremely low so we were looking for a tumor. On one view of the film, it showed a 4mm pituitary, on other views, the doctor couldn't see find any tumor. Basically, the MRI was inconclusive. The report said, "she's probably ok"--I was mad. Anyway, a MRI can not show damage to the pituitary or anti-bodies. It can only show possible tumors or an obvious mis-shaped pituitary.
With low cortisol, every little thing is too stressful and your body won't be able to handle it.
Your symptoms sound like hashis to me. Have you had both anti-bodies tested? Thyroid perioxidase and thyroidglobulin? If your TSH, FREE t3/T4 flucuate, it's likely hashimottos and is the most common autoimmune condition. I believe those that appear to have a pituitary problem along with hashis, also have pituitary anti-bodies. Unfortunately, there is not an anti-body test yet for the pituitary. Other than a tumor or antibodies, blood loss or head injury, may be to blame. I have never figured it out in my case. I think I was born with it--who knows.
This is complicated and hard to discuss here but I help at a thyroid/hormone/adrenal/pituitary site. I've seen it all. There is a lot of interesting info. and people to help. It's just sad, but most doctors are completely lost on this subject. The majority of endocrinologists will not help!
www.stopthethyroidmadness.com is are mother website and www.realthyroidhelp.com is where we are at. Hope this helps.
Oh, BTW, many of us over there do follow a primal diet.
Wow! Crystal.. you're a wealth of knowledge.
Yes, I had the ACTH test early in the morning and I sat the whole time-- right there at the lab.
I don't recall if I've had both antibodies tested or not ?? My TSH was always normal (before I started thyroid hormone) and my Frees were always low normal in range.
I think I was born with this too-- and now, my son who's 17 is exhibiting some of the same issues...he has adrenaline surges (I never had much of that though) and his saliva test for adrenal show almost a flat line-- not much cortisol activity at all. But he also burns the candle at both ends and won't eat well. And lives on coffee. And smokes cigarettes... and won't change his lifestyle habits at all.
I've been over at stopthethyroidmadness.com - but have never been to the other site-- will take a look. Thanks for the info!
TSH is a pituitary hormone and signals the thyroid to pump out more hormone. If you have low frees, TSH should go up, make sense? If you have low frees with a low TSH(or between 1-2), your pituitary isn't doing its job. Symptoms are the most important, but generally ft4 should be top 1/3 of range and ft3 should be at the top of range or slightly over. If yours are at the bottom, you don't feel very well. Ranges represent the general population so if you're at the bottom of the range, that means you feel worse than everybody else. Many doctors and insurance co. are lab range obsessed though!
There is about 8 pituitary hormones but TSH, ACTH, IGF-1, FSH, and LH need to be tested. You can have all of them low or just one. Some doctors believe that you have to have all of them low to have a pituitary problem and that's just wrong. I am low in TSH, ACTH, and IGF.
I'm worried about your son, the poor kid. If he has flat lined cortisol levels, he has addisons disease and this is life threatening. His condition explains the excessive coffee and smoking. Smoking actually boosts some cortisol production.
Well, I was exaggerating a bit.. his is not flatlined, but it's low. He definitely does not have Addison's, I know that for sure. And he definitely needs to cut out some bad habits, that's for sure.
My FSH and LH are high, indicating menopause so I guess those are working just fine for pituitary hormones.
I'm very well versed in thyroid stuff- have been researching for years on the stuff. That's why I always "bravo" your posts because it's nice to read someone else who knows her hormone stuff, ya know?
I actually think some of my hormone issues (as well as my son's) are because we both have low cholesterol. My total has been as low as 100. I've been actually working on increasing my healthy fats to achieve a higher HDL. I did get it as high as 178 one time, but I think that was falsely elevated due to some poor food choices the weekend previous to the draw.
It's really sad though that people have to suffer and then try to figure this stuff out on their own, especially when they can't think straight. We were much better at treating hypoT. 100 years ago than we are today. I can never resist commenting on thyroid/hormone questions. It's always nice to see people who know their stuff.
Yep, if FSH/LH is high, those pit. hormones work and probably menopause.
High cholesterol is usually a sign of low thyroid or other low hormones since hormones are made from it. I'm sure you know that.
100 is pretty low. People don't realize that too low cholesterol is a problem too. Mine has always been low as well, around 140 total. My HDL is good though.
"Hypoglycemia is a symptom of weak adrenals since cortisol (adrenal hormone) works with insulin to regulate blood sugar.
If cortisol and blood sugar are low, the adrenals can produce huge amounts adrenaline(another adrenal hormone) to compensate. The problem with adrenaline is that blood sugar is up and down all day whereas healthy levels of cortisol helps keep it more balanced. Some people have such weak adrenals(or pituitary) that they can produce enormous amounts of adrenaline causing extreme anxiety, shakiness, heightened senses, light and sound, wired and tired feeling, and high heart rate etc. This happened to me for 12 years!"
Can also work the other way round, I could tick quite a lot of that but it seems to be the hypo rebounds from postprandial hypers that were causal to the adrenal symptoms. Anyway it all levelled out with tight BG control.
Lots of fascinating stuff here, as usual. Sometimes you really have to dig around in the endocrine system to discover which is cause and which effect and where the primary breakdown is.