- Over time, the adrenal glands will shrink if they are not stimulated to make cortisol.
- Functions of cortisol - Regulating blood pressure, maintaining cardiovascular function, maintaining glucose levels, supporting immune functions and regulating the body's inflammatory response.
- Functions of aldosterone - Regulating sodium and potassium levels in the body, helping to maintain blood pressure.
- Symptoms - Fatigue, loss of appetite, weight loss, muscle weakness, low blood pressure, salt cravings, nausea and darkening of the skin.
- Causes - Any disease that causes the adrenal cortex to be destroyed or partially destroyed can cause Addison’s disease.
- Diagnosis - The most common test for detecting Addison’s disease is the ACTH stimulation test.
- Treatment - Replacing the hormones that your body needs that are not being made by the adrenal glands.
- If left untreated, Addison’s disease can be fatal.
Facts About Addison's Disease
An example of Addison's disease is damage to the adrenal glands caused by tuberculosis, cancer and chronic infection.
Origin of Addison's diseaseafter T. Addison (1793-1860), Eng physician who identified it
Origin of Addison's diseaseAfter Thomas Addison (1793-1860), British physician
Named from Thomas Addison (1793-1860), M. D., of London, who first described it.