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Thyroid UK
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Could I have Addison's?

I'm wondering if I might have Addison's disease as I seem to have a lot of the symptoms like frequent urination, low blood pressure, salt cravings, thirsty even though I'm always drinking water, extreme fatigue in the mornings, headaches and blood sugar issues e.g. I get really shaky when I have simple carbs and always have to have carbs with protein or after a meal of protein and fats. I can't eat sugar on an empty stomach or on it's own. I have also developed hyperpigmentation on my upper lip (Melasma) and I my tan hasn't faded since my 5 night holiday to Lanzarote in May (so 13 weeks ago) and I spent a lot of my sunbathing time in the shade reading. I only sunbathed properly for about 2 days. In addition I have yellow soles of my feet and I've been feeling nauseas, have had diarrhoea and pain in my back. I've also had cravings for aniseed twists and ate a whole 200g bag to myself this weekend. (Not licorice but is it the same thing?). I don't get dizzy on standing though and I don't have darkening on my lips or gums or palms etc. I have Hashimoto's and I know sometimes these two often go hand in hand and that when you have one autoimmune condition you're more likely to have others. I don't know if these are all symptoms though or if they could be attributed to something else or simply nothing to worry about. I've been tested for cealiac and diabetes and I don't have either. The dr is testing some hormones but not cortisol. I've just sent back my blue horizons medical test for cortisol this morning so I'm hoping it will give me some answers. I should probably elaborate on the salt cravings. I do crave salty things from time to time but it's more that I can't get enough salt. I have to add loads to salt before I can actually taste it and people always comment on how much I have. My serum sodium levels are normal though. 🤷🏻‍♀️I shouldn't probably add that I've had no unexplained weight loss but this could Ben because of the underactive thyroid or because despite feeling nauseous I feel weak and, tired and shaky if I don't eat so i always make sure I have regular meals. Any advice gratefully received, thank you.

6 Replies

Have you had a saliva cortisol test done? Your symptoms are 90% the same as my daughter except that she is struggling to get a diagnosis of hypothyroidism. She 'crashes and burns' in the afternoon. I have Hashi's and adrenal issues). Bear in mind that the NHS (if you are in UK) probably won't accept any saliva test results. My daughters saliva test results done through medichecks had a doctor's analysis which suggested Addison's & to retest in a month. Currently just waiting on cortisol blood test results. Have you done the BP test (forgotten it's name!) where you take your BP after lying or sitting down quietly for 10 mins then stand up and take it. If it stays the same or drops it is likely that you have adrenal issues. Keep a note if time and results and do it at different times over a period of a few days & take the result to your doctor if need be. Are you taking T4? I have read that this isn't good for already fatigued adrenals and that people fair better on T3. Hope this helps.

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Hi t3rcam,

Thank you so much for your reply. I haven't had a saliva cortisol test. I did a blood one this morning between 8-9am. I posted it shortly after so I hope to have the results back by weds. So do you think your daughter has addisons and Hashi's? It took me 3 years to get diagnosed by the NHS so I used blue horizons medicals plus 6 test which showed the full picture. Soon after I was put on levothyroxine by my gp. Could be worth her doing that test.

I've only measured my bp sitting up (90's/60's) or lying down (80's/40's). I will try your suggestion this evening as I have a bp monitor at home.

Very interesting to hear that about T4. I'm on 75mcg but am hoping my endo will write me a private prescription for T3 in oct.


She had the full monty medichecks equivalent of Blue Horizons thyroid blood test & although her TSH was over the range her GP wouldn't even consider thyroid being a problem as she is currently reducing her dose of citalopram after being diagnosed with Post Natal Depression &?says that her symptoms are depression related - I think she's been hypo for a long time so I wonder if the depression was also a symptom of hypo. She had an NHS TSH test done and it was 288 (mid range) but as far as I know it is not un common for TSH to fluctuate. The medichecks doctor analysis of her results suggested that she was hypo "but unlikely to be treated by conventional medicine". Read your levothyroxine patient information leaflet, there is a comment about adrenals - makes you wonder why! I now know that I can't tolerate Levo because of my adrenal issues, not that my GP or any other doctor I've seen believes me. You shouldn't have to pay for a private prescription for T3. I have a reliable source if you want to PM me. Have you had a look at the RT3adrenals yahoo group?


That's pretty shocking to read! Depression is absolutely a symptom of hypo and women are very likely to be become hypo after giving birth! Perhaps she should change Drs. TSH does fluctuate. I had a reading of 0.5 and then all of a sudden within weeks it shot up to 6 for an unknown reason. The best time to do a TSH test is early as poss in the morning and on an empty stomach.

Thank you for the heads up on that. I will PM you now. I've not heard of the yahoo group but will take a look now. Thank you again.


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