Wednesday, 10 January 2018

What Cushing's Syndrome Is, Symptoms And Effects



Cushing's syndrome is a hormonal disorder caused by prolonged exposure of the body's tissues to high levels of the hormone cortisol. Sometimes called hypercortisolism, Cushing's syndrome is relatively rare and most commonly affects adults aged 20 to 50. People who are obese and have type 2 diabetes, along with poorly controlled blood glucose-also called blood sugar-and high blood pressure, have an increased risk of developing the disorder.
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Cushing's disease is rare, affecting 10 to 15 people per million each year, most commonly adults between 20 and 50 years of age. Women account for more than 70 percent of cases.
Most patients with Cushing's disease have small tumors (pituitary microadenomas). However, it can be difficult to diagnosis Cushing's disease, and the diagnosis is often delayed.

Symptoms Of Cushing's Syndrome
The signs and symptoms of Cushing's syndrome vary, but most people with the disorder have upper body obesity, a rounded face, increased fat around the neck, and relatively slender arms and legs. Children tend to be obese with slowed growth rates.
Other signs appear in the skin, which becomes fragile and thin, bruises easily, and heals poorly. Purple or pink stretch marks may appear on the abdomen, thighs, buttocks, arms, and breasts. The bones are weakened, and routine activities such as bending, lifting, or rising from a chair may lead to backaches and rib or spinal column fractures. Women with Cushing's syndrome usually have excess hair growth on their face, neck, chest, abdomen, and thighs. Their menstrual periods may become irregular or stop. Men may have decreased fertility with diminished or absent desire for sex and, sometimes, erectile dysfunction.
Your case might be different than someone else's, but when the disease is full-blown, common symptoms are:


  • Rounded, rosy face
  • Weight gain, especially upper body
  • A fat pad in the upper back or base of the neck (you may hear this called a "buffalo hump")
  • Thin arms and legs
  • Acne
  • Being very tired
  • Weak muscles, especially when using your shoulders and hip muscles
  • High blood pressure
  • High blood sugar levels
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Osteoporosis
  • Kidney stones
  • Dleep problems
  • Extra hair growth on your body and face. 
  • Irregular periods
  • Low sex drive and problems having an erection.

The signs and symptoms of Cushing syndrome can vary depending on the levels of excess cortisol. Cortisol performs vital tasks in the body which includes -
◾Helping maintain blood pressure and cardiovascular function
◾Reducing the immune system's inflammatory response
◾Balancing the effects of insulin, which breaks down glucose for energy
regulating the metabolism of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats.
◾Response to stress situations. Cortisol is one of the "fight or flight" hormones.
◾Cortisol is essential for you to be able to cope with acutely stressful situations, including surgery.

Eating well is an important part of living with Cushing's. A healthy diet can ease some symptoms and prevent others. Protect your bones by eating foods with calcium and vitamin D . Limit how much sodium and fatty foods you eat. A nutritionist can help you make sure you're getting enough of the right nutrients .


Author: Richard Smith