Opening hours
Mon - Fri 8:00 - 21:00
Sat 8:00 - 18:00

st. Nowotarska 294,
34-431 Waksmund, Poland

Adrenal insufficiency

Adrenal insufficiency is a condition that is increasingly recognized in patients. The adrenal glands play an extremely important role in our body – they are paired organs located above kidneys, producing hormones such as: aldosterone, cortisol, aldosterone, cortisol, dehydroepiandrosterone.

  • Aldosterone is a hormone involved in regulating the body’s water and mineral balance. It is responsible for the excretion of an appropriate amount of potassium in the urine and the reabsorption of ions of sodium in kidneys to help prevent dehydration and a drop in blood pressure.
  • Cortisol affects our metabolism – it has anti-inflammatory and concentration-increasing effects of glucose in the blood when our body is exposed to stress, lack of sleep, starvation or physical exercise.
  • Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) is a hormone that is converted into androgens such as androstenedione and testosterone in men and estrogens in women.

The adrenal glands are located above the kidneys and are made up of an inner core and an outer cortex – whose hypothyroidism is the cause of the complex of symptoms related to the deficiency of mentioned hormones, especially cortisol. The cause of hypothyroidism may be their damage, e.g. in Addison’s disease (primary hypocortex) or abnormal pituitary function, most often associated with long-term use of glucocorticosteroids (with treatment lasting e.g. several months).

Symptoms of adrenal insufficiency

The main symptoms that indicate adrenal insufficiency include:

  • general feeling of tiredness and weakness,
  • fainting when suddenly getting up from a lying position,
  • lack of appetite resulting in weight loss,
  • the need to eat salty foods,
  • nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain,
  • drop in blood pressure,
  • hypoglycaemia – low blood sugar,
  • disturbed levels of sodium and / or potassium in the blood (decreased sodium and / or increased potassium),
  • in Addison’s disease – skin darkening, in secondary hypothyroidism – the opposite: pale skin.

If you notice these types of symptoms, please seek consultation with endocrinologist and undergo a detailed medical diagnosis.

Treatment methods

The treatment of adrenal insufficiency is pharmacological substitution therapy, thanks to which existing hormonal deficiencies are compensated. In the case of primary hypothyroidism it is treated with prescribed by a doctor glucocorticosteroids, mineralocorticosteroids and sometimes androgens, while secondary hypothyroidism requires administration of glucocorticosteroids and androgens.

We cordially invite you to the endocrinology clinic, where consultations are conducted by an experienced specialist – endocrinologist: dr Edyta Runger-Kafara.