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Adrenals, saliva test results

Hi, I desperately need some advice on adrenals.

Before I started Cytomel I was suspicious about my adrenals. Simple blood tests back then showed this results:


DHEA-S 8,2 (1,6 - 8,8)

Cortisol at 10am 430,6 (165,6 - 507,8)

I was on Cytomel for 1,5 month now. Improvements are noticed in power in body, body temperature, cycle, depression less often.

But a new bunch of symptoms appeared: headache, night terrors, sleepiness almost narcoleptic-like, energy problem has shifted to a different time of the day sort of. And pain and awful numbness in the lower back and under shoulder blades. Stress resistance is 0. I also passed a blood clot in my urine, it was a difficult experience for my body to pass it.

24 hour saliva test gave these results: please see the attached picture.

Diagnosis: Hypocortisolism.

I am so confused.

What test can be done more to understand a real problem of adrenals?

Can Cytomel make adrenals work worse or even be damaged by it?

Or should I up the dosage? (My fresh thyroid tests will be ready in a couple of days)

Is liver detox a good idea, milk thistle?

According to this test my adrenal health is so bad... and I do feel very bad.

I am on a Paleo diet. Should I change it, eat more carbs?

Is there anything to help to stop this numbness and pain at home?

For now the only idea is to get to my endo in the hospital , and then additionally to choose a new functional doctor. But I have to be in control of next steps, more information is required.

Please, be so kind, give any recommendations on what to begin with. I will look into them with all my appreciation.

5 Replies

Hello. I don't have the experience to comment on whether your symptoms are linked to the Cytomel you are taking I'm afraid, but as far as further investigation of the adrenals, your doctor should be able to arrange further testing for you. Hopefully other people can comment on the Cytomel question.

And independent of any thyroid or adrenal issues, a blood clot in urine would have me heading straight for the GP to investigate as that could be a symptom of various things.

Good luck and I hope you are able to get some clear answers from your doctors.


Tasker, hi! Thank you for your answer. The blood clot was a surprise for my GP, because she tested my urine 1 week before, there was no infection found. And the blood tests show that my kidneys are all in order. They are going to check kidneys on the ultrasound. Hopefully it will give an answer.


Hi Viv123, I had low tolerance of Cytomel when my adrenals were not functioning normally. In the past I’ve produced low cortisol throughly the day and high at night (I believe it shot up at night to support my morning cortisol which should normally be at the high end of the range). At that time my temperature was all over the place and very inconsistent and low. I suffered palpitations, breathlessness and vertigo until I reduced Cytomel. I’ve learnt since that adrenals/cortisol levels need to be in a good place before thyroid meds can be utilised in the body.

My endo took me off T3 for 3 months before testing thyroid hormones and morning cortisol levels. The 9am cortisol blood test showed over range (I believe it went up when I stopped Cytomel). She said I had no adrenal insufficiency and didn’t think I needed a 24hr urine test. I’m now about to do a cortisol saliva x 4 test from medichecks just so I can keep an eye on my levels through the day.

I’m currently on 25mcg liquid levothyroxine and 6.25mcg T3....I’m feeling ok. No palps and my temps are slowly going up. I’ll wait to see what my next thyroid blood test and the saliva test show before I increase levo and T3. But the combination is suiting me better than T3 only.

Ps. I did find Adrenavive adrenal cortex capsules helped to support my adrenals when they were functioning at their worst.


Hi Lynn-2! What was the highest dosage of t3 you reached, when your endo decided to take you off it? “Taking off” should go slowly if I understand it right.

I got into ER that day I posted my message. It was so bad, but doctors there didn’t know how to help me. I felt hypo and hyper in the same time. I took a wrong decision to increase the dose on Sunday. On Monday did it again, and then hyper symptoms became really obvious. So now I reduced dose by 5 mcg. From 20 to 15.

I will certainly look into adrenal support supps.

Thank you for sharing your experience!


Viv123 I’m sorry you’ve had such a bad time.

You are right ‘coming off’ T3 should be done slowly!

I was self medicating with T3 for 2 years with guidance from another help group online. I’d slowly reached 75mcg but felt hyper some days so reduced to 62.5mcg which initially suited me until I started to get palpitations etc. I reduced again to 50mcg T3. I’m sure my adrenals didn’t cope with so much T3 but possibly my thyroid needed that amount...at that time my blood results didn’t show as overmedicated but my saliva cortisol results were all over the place! At this point I took Adrenavive...this was advice from Dr Peatfield, he also said I was on too much T3 which was absolutely right.

My private appointment with the endo was more to get to the bottom of my adrenal issues than thyroid! However, she didn’t want to test anything until I was off meds and at baseline. It took me 2-3 months to slowly come off T3. Blood tests were done and my TSH was 10.4 and well over range. My adrenal blood test showed over range cortisol which the endo wasn’t concerned about...she said there was no adrenal insufficiency. Her advice was to take liquid Levo (tablet form in the past didn’t suit me). I’m on a very low dose, 25mcg for last 2 months but I add in 6.25mcg T3 due to feeling fatigued mid afternoon. I’m feeling ok and the levo T3 combo is suiting me better than T3 only. I have bloods done on Monday and will adjust meds if need be! I’m going to ask my GP for NDT (fingers crossed I will get a prescription) I still think my adrenals aren’t functioning normally.. Im about to do a cortisol test to see what’s happening.

Are your Vitamin and mineral levels ok? It’s so important for iron to be at a good level for thyroid meds to work properly. Check D3 B12 Potassium and Sodium too. Magnesium is good for muscle cramps and may help your back pain, most people are deficient in it. I’d advise you to start with 400mg daily.


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