Adrenal Insufficiency Community
1.32k Members
Avatar universal

ACTH Test concern

Ok, so I went to the hospital today for my adrenal function tests.  The nurse checked my vitals then administered the medication then checked my vitals again. He seemed quite concerned that my vitals did not change after I had the meds. He said that usually patients that receive the meds have a rise in both their blood pressure and their pulse as the medication is essentially a large dose of adrenaline. I had neither! He wouldn't confirm that this was a problem or issue. All he said was that he is not a doctor and couldn't tell me anything.  Why tell me your concerns about my vitals not changing then tell me you can't tell me anything.  Did anyone else have these issues?  Does anyone know what this could possibly mean?  I am concerned.
4 Responses
Avatar universal
Did you get an ACTH test? That is not adrenaline...
What is *usual* is ... ah - well... it means nothing.

I used to have Cushing's disease - which was elevated cortisol- I know hundreds of people with it and we all vary. My BP was LOW with high cortisol and now with my adrenals out - stayed low. Most people yes, with high cortisol do have higher and some have really high - but it does not have to be and does not really mean anything.

So, bodies just react differently. The nurse was thinking everyone fits into a box but we don't. Some people with low cortisol have high BP!
Avatar universal
Thank you for responding.  I had an ACTH stim test.  The medication given to me was cosyntrophin.  The nurse explain to me (referencing the movie Pulp Fiction where the dying girl is injected in the heart and jumps off the gorund) that this medicine is essentially like giving me a lot of adrenline.  He stated that I should have had a rise in blood pressure and heart rate immediately after receiving the medication. I had no reaction.  He was floored that I had no change in my vitals.  He even check them 3 times to make sure.  He states he has never seen anyone without a change in vitals.  I am hoping I hear from my endo today with the results of the test! Again, thank you for your input.
Avatar universal
It can raise BP - but it is NOT like the pulp fiction movie - otherwise it would be an alternative medication for that use and it is not. It really can differ a lot.

People vary a lot in their reactions to the stim test - some feel nothing (but you still may react to the test). I had Cushing's with low blood pressure. It just is a *most* thing - but not quite like pulp fiction (dang that test would be pretty dangerous! hospital time!) so... cripes...

I hope you get your results soon.
Avatar universal
Thanks again!
Have an Answer?
Top Thyroid Answerers
Avatar universal
Avatar universal
Northern, NJ
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
We tapped the CDC for information on what you need to know about radiation exposure
Endocrinologist Mark Lupo, MD, answers 10 questions about thyroid disorders and how to treat them
A list of national and international resources and hotlines to help connect you to needed health and medical services.
Here’s how your baby’s growing in your body each week.
These common ADD/ADHD myths could already be hurting your child
This article will tell you more about strength training at home, giving you some options that require little to no equipment.