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» LymeNet Flash » Questions and Discussion » Medical Questions » Cortisol?

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Author Topic: Cortisol?
humanbeing
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http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=104&STORY=/www/story/03-19-2008/0004776844&EDATE=

Anyone tried this?

--------------------
We are spiritual beings on a human journey...

www.ruggierogallery.com

Posts: 906 | From CT | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
viva
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Hi Humanbeing!

Husband's LLMD has not talked about cortisol, but it is discussed in the book "The Lyme Disease Solution." I haven't finished reading it, but as an aside, it is very comprehensive and clearly written, and covers supplements/herbals/diet, as well as abx treatment.

Here is some of what the author says about cortisol:

Chronic stress can either make the adrenal gland overproduce cortisol; this is called "adrenal stress." This leads to immune suppression, allowing the ketes to evade immune system detection.

The more relevant scenario here is "adrenal fatigue," in which chronic stress overworks the adrenal glands such that they under-produce cortisol. This "can lead to damage to healthy tissues due to uncontrolled inflammation. In this case, it may require taking physiologic doses of cortisol by mouth to help the adrenals until they recover" (p. 148).

He says adrenal support can be achieved using:

--Vitamin C
--Vitamin B5
--Magnesium
--Eleutherococcus (Siberian ginseng)
--schisandra seed
--rhodiola
--green tea
--grape seed and skin
--licorice
--"and others"

"When documented by laboratory testing, it may also be necessary to use tempoary low dose oral natural cortisol (using adrenal replacement doses, not immunosuppressive doses...Another key component of adrenal support is adequate uninterrupted sleep" (pp. 148-149).

Hope this info sheds some light...

Warmly,
viva

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humanbeing
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thanks Viva...
Is there a test for our adrenal levels or cortisol levels that can be helpful?
Thanks,
Kim

--------------------
We are spiritual beings on a human journey...

www.ruggierogallery.com

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KS
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Before I had the Lyme diagnosis, my doctor thought I might have Addison's Disease because my cortisol levels were low (e.g. 5 first thing in the morning - which is when levels should be at their highest).

I had a ACTH stimulation test perfomed. Essentially they take your cortisol levels, inject you with ACTH (produced by your pituitary in order to get your adrenal glands to produce more cortisol). They then do another couple of blood draws to see if your cortisol levels rise.

Low cortisol levels can cause some symptoms that would overlap with Lyme symptoms.

There are other things to do to evaluate your overall 24-hour cortisol pattern....24 urine, saliva swab test.....

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map1131
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I tested all the hormones and discovered about 5 yrs ago that it was what hormones? I tested next to nothing on them. Really looked bad on testing.

I took the HGH, cortisol, compound pharmacy creams hormones, etc for about 12 mths. Nothing.

I just knew this was not the path for me. Might sound crazy, but I decided they were not going to help me. In fact, I believed they were harmful for me.

After 12 mths of all these hormones, I still felt like I was dying a slow death. I turned a different direction on my path. I'm no longer dying a slow death.

Well today I'm slow, but I did a vacation last week that has kicked my rear. Literally!!!!

Pam

--------------------
"Never, never, never, never, never give up" Winston Churchill

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viva
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Kim,

KS and Pam have the first-hand experience...I just have a book. But quoting again from my new favorite Lyme resource:

"Perhaps the best and most commonly used test is 24-hour urine testing. However, because of expense and convenience, I use a different screening method called salivary hormone testing.

Studies have shown that salivary levels correlate with free hormone blood levels. Therefore, if I suspect adrenal problems,
I order the saliva test called an arenal stress profile by either Genova Labs or Metametrix. In lieu of that test, an "8 A.M. morning cortisol" and a DHEA-sulfate level can be done as a screen." (p. 122).

Hope this helps.

Viva

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Dawn in VA
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Hi guys. Just my two cents on this one...

I think it's important to keep in mind that if your ACTH stimulation test comes back "normal"-

that your adrenals responded well to the infusion- most endocrinologists (and well-versed LLMD's) would say that means you have dysfunction

of your HPA (hypothalamus-pituitary axis) and your adrenals in and of themselves are OK (granted no thyroid problems).

What the cause of that might be is anyone's guess- some docs say from the biotoxins, some say other immune stuff, pituitary problems, etc.

Like others have mentioned, I also think getting a 24-hour urine or saliva test is a good idea before going on DHEA or cortisol, just to make

sure additional hormones are absolutely necessary.

--------------------
(The ole disclaimer: I'm not a doctor.)

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map1131
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My testing was 24 hr urine ordered by a LLMD.

Pam

--------------------
"Never, never, never, never, never give up" Winston Churchill

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smadavid
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Just this week I had a Cortisol test done w/ ZRT Laboratory, and I'm very low in the morning, as well as high in the evening:

Morning: 2.7 (normal is 3.7 - 9.5)
Noon: 1.6 (normal is 1.2 - 3.0)
Evening: 2.1 (normal is 0.6 - 1.9)
Night: 0.6 (normal is 0.4 - 1.0)

I'm not sure what all this means yet, and whether its caused by Lyme (which I'm still in the process of getting diagnosed for). But it definitely explains why I feel so crappy in the mornings!

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humanbeing
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Thank you for the great information...I plan to ask for the test at my next apptmt...

I love this website!

--------------------
We are spiritual beings on a human journey...

www.ruggierogallery.com

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skigal
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Has anyone had their cortisol testing done thru their PCP?
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Lymetoo
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I've been taking cortisol and a number of other hormones for 5-6 yrs. I think it really helped me...but is not a cure-all.

I was tested thru the 24hr urine collection.

--------------------
--Lymetutu--
Opinions, not medical advice!

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Michelle M
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Darling Human!!!

I have nothing whatsoever to add.

Except:

It's wonderful to see you!

[kiss]

Michelle

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