Advice needed on how to take HC

I am currently on T3 only treatment which is going quite well. However I am trying to do something about my adrenal function for years and I tried all sorts of supplements for this but with no improvement. So I am thinking of getting hydrocortisone tablets, I know where to get them so I don't need help in that matter but I don't know how to start. Those are 20 mg pills, should I just take one or should I do it slowly and increase the dose during time? Also, should I take all at once and if so at what time, or should I divide the dose? Would really appreciate advice from anyone who has experience in this. Thank you.

18 Replies

  • I take HC 20 mg once per day in the morning. Don't know is this the proper way how it should be taken but I feel much better since staring with it.

  • Thank you.

  • You might find this video helpful:-

  • Very interesting. I never used vitamin C in larger doses but maybe I should start taking it with HC and in that way lower cortisol if I take too much.

  • Why on earth would you want to take Hydrocortisone if it hasn't been prescribed by doctor?

    i developed Cushings disease due to a pituitary tumour which was basically producing too much steroids in my body. the result of this has been horrific & I wouldn't wish anyone to go through what i am going through!

    You can develop Cushings fro taking too much steroids.

    I used to be able to walk up to 10 miles a day even though I had Rheumatoid arthritis , now I can barely walk half a mile as the excess steroids have destroyed my muscles - I had my tumour removed 5 months a go - it is going to take a couple of years to regain my muscle strength. Im also short of breath have developed sleep apnoea & have fatigue +++.

    Please do NOT take steroids because you think they will make you feel better !I now have to take 20mgs a day to stay alive. If you feel you have impaired adrenal function ask to be referred to an Endocrinologist.

  • I am sorry, I am no expert on steroids whatsoever, but it is my understanding that mainstream doctors, including endocrinologists, are no good at diagnosing adrenal fatigue, which is what we are talking about here. They can only diagnose adrenal insufficiency which, of course, is a potentially fatal condition.

    I hope others will chime in but, personally, I doubt 20 mg of HC daily could lead to your adrenal glands shutting down completely...

  • Exactly. My doctor don't even know what adrenal fatigue is and so I am forced to self-medicate. I am just trying to get better, certainly not to ruin my adrenals.

  • Hi I take 30mg a day used to be 40 but I have managed to reduce it. Don't take it all at once I split the dosage 10mg when I get up then 10around lunch time and then tea time. When I was really bad I needed 10 before bed or I couldn't sleep. Monitor your temps 3x a day and keep record if they vary hugely you are not on enough. In fact I would do that before beginning to check google dr rind temp graph and read all of his info and use graph also stop the thyroid madness has a lot of great info on low adrenal function.


  • Thank you very much for your advice. How long do you take it and how do you feel now?

  • I would say - from experience of being prescribed HC - either take the 20 all at once in the morning, or split it in two and take half in the morning and half at lunch time. But, NEVER, EVER take it after 1.0 pm. The adrenals have to be left to do some work on their own. That's what my doctor - who took it himself - told me, and it makes sense to me. But I know a lot of people disagree.

  • Thank you. I think I'll try taking it all at once in the morning and see how this goes. How long were you on HC and do you still take it?

  • I took it on and off for years. Couldn't take it for too long at a time because it makes me blow up like a balloon! That is something to look out for with HC : water-retention. The last time a took it was for a few months last year, and I got so swollen, I vowed I'd never take it again. Although, it did help my adrenals.

    But that's just my experience, yours might be totally different. :)

  • Thank you. I was also planning of taking it for a while, heard that taking it on non-stop basis is usually causing some sorts of problems to most people.

  • Well, the first time, I took it for a couple of years before my cortisol rose a enough. But, I Don't pretend to be an expert. The most important thing for me was that I was able to come of it!

  • Were you experiencing any side affects during that time? Water retention you are mentioning or something else? Or this started later when your cortisol was high enough?

  • When I first started taking it, I felt wonderful! Better than I had in years. No adverse side-effects apart from the water-retention, which built up slowly, the first time. But, I Don't think that was because my cortisol was high enough, it's just something that happens to a lot of people on HC.

  • Hi I think it is a very individual thing and there is no concrete right or wrong my doctor told me to split the dosage and not to take more than 10mg unless in serious stress as 10mg won't shut the adrenals down and they still Need to work also if your very low like I was you may need to take later in the day I was having really bad what I thought were anxiety attacks on a night but in fact it was my low cortisol causing an adrenalin rush it was awful but taking some cortisol on an evening stopped this for me at least. I am struggling to get lower than my current dose however it's more to do with my low ferritin which I'm struggling to optimize than anything else. I am functioning and manage to work full time which is a huge improvement on how I felt a couple of years ago but I still have issues fatigue joint pain etc but nothing's perfect 😁

  • Thanks, I am new to this so still have to figure out what would be the best way it in my case. It will probably take some time of experimenting.

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