I just popped in for a minute, as i normally post on the pain forum.
As a point of reference, anyone who has been on long-term or high dose corticosteroids with new symptoms of diffuse joint/muscle pain, unrelenting fatigue, low appetite, and general malaise should be aware of steroid induced secondary adrenal insufficiency as a possible differential diagnosis.
Corticosteroids suppress the Pituitary gland and HPA axis (hypothalamus-Pituitary-adrenal gland interrelationships). Secondary adrenal insufficiency is not on the radar of most physicians and can escape detection. This is a serious, debilitating, and life affecting condition. Even endocrinologists are challenged by this condition.
Anyone who has been prescribed corticosteroids for Lupus or UC or other auto immune disorder should become aware of secondary adrenal insufficoency and propose baseline testing.
I have both primary adrenal insufficiency (Addison’s) and secondary adrenal insufficiency. I was mis-diagnosed for 2-3 years, my health languishing. An acute Addisonian crisis provided the window of opportunity for a proper diagnosis - and a week’s ICU stay. Unfortunately, most people with adrenal insufficiency will shuffle from physician to physician for months/years before an accurate diagnosis is made, many individuals wrongly dismissed and invalidated, and told that symptoms are “all in your head.”
Become aware of secondary adrenal insufficiency. Pose the possibility to your physician. Ask for baseline blood work (morning cortisol and ACTH level) and an ACTH stimulation challenge testing. Do NOT assume that your physician has an awareness of corticosteroid induced HPA axis suppression.
My life has been forever changed by improper medical “care.” The only sense I can make of my redirected life is to provide wisdom and guidance to others in gaining knowledge about
Addison’s disease/adrenal insufficiency. To spare someone the medical odyssey that is mine.
Pituitary failure, wide-spread endocrine dysfunction
Mixed connective tissue disorder
Extensive intestinal perforation with sepsis, permanent ileostomy
Avascular necrosis of both hips and jaw
Receiving Palliative Care (care and comfort)
Post Edited ((Seashell)) : 9/17/2018 1:13:10 PM (GMT-6)