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Cushing Syndrome: Everything You Need to Know

Cushing Syndrome: Everything You Need to Know

You may have heard about Cushion syndrome and are eager to know more about it. This disease occurs as the human body produces cortisol, more than required. You experience symptoms like thinning skin and weight gain. It is also called hypercortisolism. It occurs primarily due to the production of the hormone cortisol at abnormal levels. It could be for diverse reasons. 

Know the symptoms

A few commonly occurring symptoms of Cushing syndrome are gain in weight, and fatty deposits, mainly in the face, midsection, upper back, and between the shoulders. Also, patients may experience muscle weakness, fatigue, acne, slow-to-heal skin injuries, and thinning skin. Besides this, there may be purple stretch marks, especially on the thighs, abdomen, arms, and breasts. 

Other symptoms

The other symptoms observed are increased thirst, high blood sugar, hypertension (high blood pressure), increased urination, and mood changes. Besides this, patients might also experience frequent headaches,  irritability, anxiety, irregular menstrual periods, increased infections, and depression. It will be necessary to visit a medical specialist to derive proper treatment. 

Cushing Syndrome in People

  • In children: Children might develop Cushing Syndrome, however, less frequently compared to adults. Besides the above symptoms, children might exhibit the following symptoms. It includes high blood pressure, slower growth rate, and obesity. 
  • In males: Males may exhibit additional symptoms of contracting this disease. It includes reduced fertility, sexual interest loss, and erectile dysfunction. However, early treatment can help curb the symptoms and its effects. 
  • In females: Females are the most affected than men. They may develop extra body and facial hair. It occurs in the thighs, abdomen, chest, neck, and face region. They may even experience irregular menstruation or not having it at all. Lack of treatment might lead to experiencing difficulties in getting pregnant.

Know the causes

Excess hormone cortisol production by the adrenal glands causes Cushing syndrome. Reasons for excess production are high emotional stress, panic disorders, depression, alcoholism, malnutrition, or intensive athletic training. It can also result from high-stress levels associated with surgery, acute illness, pregnancy during the final trimester, or injury. The trained dietitian in Gurgaon can help cope up with this issue and reduce its effects. 

Risk factors

Taking corticosteroids in high dosage for a long time may cause Cushion syndrome. Your doctor might have prescribed it to treat some health condition. Hence, before taking it, ask about the dosage and duration. Other risk factors include living with adrenal or pituitary tumors or age. Genetic predisposition might help develop endocrine tumors. 

Diagnosing the cause

The doctors conduct a few tests to determine the root cause. It includes:

  • CRH (Corticotropin-releasing hormone) stimulation test: Patients with pituitary tumors are provided with a CRH shot to raise cortisol and ACTH levels.
  • Blood ACTH (adrenocorticotropin hormone): It measures ACTH levels in the blood. High cortisol levels and low ACTH levels might indicate tumor presence in the adrenal glands. 
  • Petrosal sinus sampling: Blood is drawn near the pituitary from a vein  and another far from the pituitary. CRH shot causing increasing ACTH levels in blood near the pituitary indicates pituitary tumor. 
  • Dexamethasone suppression test: Dexamethasone is provided in high dosage. A drop in cortisol levels indicates pituitary tumor. Cortisol or higher levels might indicate an ectopic tumor or adrenal tumor. 

Natural treatments

Lifestyle changes can help control cortisol levels and prevent further complications. Work with a certified nutritionist to lose weight. Increase physical activity to maintain weight. Avoid drinking alcohol as it can bring symptoms and signs of Cushing. Limit foods to manage blood sugar. Reduce sodium and carbohydrates in the diet. Have sufficient Vitamin D and calcium to strengthen your bones. 

Contact the best nutritionist!

If you experience the symptoms or are diagnosed with Cushing syndrome, visit the nutritionist. They can help prepare a custom diet to suit your preferences and control the symptoms. 



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