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Cushings? Only 18 and terrified

all, sorry for long story but here goes.

I've had an incredibly rough few years - aunt committed suicide, mother and father separated, mother and uncle extremely depressed and bi polar and I constantly worry about making sure everyone's okay.

I recently went to my doctor about small stretch marks I had to see if he could recommend a cream. I am not over weight and blood pressure is good. No protein in my urine either. Then my granny died and her dog and I had school exams. He tested my cortisol and my result was 928. I know this is high but I am so scared. Do you think I have cushings. I am really freaked out I'm only 18! The idea of Cushing really really terrifies me. Please help interpret these results. I'm also on the contraceptive pill and admittedly my diet isn't superb

9 Replies

Hi Melissa

I was also diagnosed with Cushings 13 years ago due to very high cortisol levels caused by a pituitary adenoma. Have you had an MRI or Adrenal Sonar to look for irregularities?



Thanks for replying, no not yet I'm being referred to an endocrinologist . Are my levels extremely high?


Contraceptive pills can increase cortisol. Stress increases cortisol.

You are under a lot of stress, normal to have high level of cortisol in a situation like that.

Do not get too worried about that one test. It can indicate cushing but most certainly is not enough for diagnosis.


Thanks so much for replying. Yes I really feel like it's just from being stressed as I don't have much other symptoms . Are my levels really high


It's high. I had high reading few months ago but as I have no symptoms it was put down to being tired and allergic attack I had suffered day before.

I agreed with my doctor and I am not worried about it as I have no symptoms of cushing.

Your doctor might want to retest you ,but because of contraceptive pills the reading might always come back high so other type of tests will be run if he sees it necessary. Until that try not to worry.


I don't know if this is going to be any comfort to you - or just think it's too b****y obvious to be worth mentioning! But, there's Cushing's Syndrome, and Cushing's disease. Now, the stretch marks you have are, of course, caused by the high cortisol. But, what caused the high cortisol? Is it Cushing's Syndrome - caused, as Inspired_101 said, by a pituitary adenoma - or is it Cushing's Syndrome - caused by things like stress?

What I'm trying to say is, the stretch marks just mean you have high cortisol, they don't automatically mean you have Cushing's Disease.

I'm saying this because I've been thinking about Cushing's recently, and decided to read up on it a bit. And, call me stupid, but put like that, I found it much more reassuring. I hope you do, too.

OK, now you can call me a moron! lol :p


This has reassured me a heap thank you!!!!


You're more than welcome. :) I'm glad it helped.


Sounds like you've been under huge stress. Could you possibly seek out counselling from your school or GP?

There is a limit to how much stress our bodies can cope with, so it's really important to be kind to yourself. Take time each day for relaxation such as lavender baths, yoga, walking in nature. Have fun with friends, laughing is a good antidote. And diet is very important for health, try cooking healthy meals and eat lots of fruit and veg. Good luck x

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