10 Symptoms of Addison’s Disease

Addison’s Disease, also known as adrenal insufficiency, is a disease that affects the production of some hormones secreted by the adrenal glands: cortisol and aldosterone.

Cortisol is the hormone responsible for the body’s response to stress, use of protein, carbohydrates, and fate, helps maintain blood pressure and cardiovascular function, and helps control inflammation. Aldosterone helps to regulate the body’s blood pressure by controlling the amount of sodium in the bloodstream.

Addison’s Disease affects only about one in 100,000 people, and affects both men and women equally. The majority of Addison’s Disease is caused by an autoimmune disease that destroys the outer layer of the adrenal glands, which is known as primary adrenal insufficiency. Less common is secondary adrenal insufficiency, which is caused by a problem with the pituitary gland or hypothalamus. Both of these secrete the stimulating hormones that activate the adrenals.

1. Muscle Pain

Muscle pain, weakness, and joint pain are common symptoms associated with Addison’s Disease. While this is easy classify, what kind of pain is usually associated with this disease? Some of the pain you might experience include in the mid-back, especially pressure over adrenals, joint and muscle pain associated with inflammation, muscle aches in the neck, back and shoulders. It may also include carpal tunnel, fibromyalgia, instability in joints causing pain, numbness and tingling in the hands and feet. This is can also cause difficulty standing, poor coordination and shaking in the joints and limbs. A lot of this pain is associated with low sodium levels caused by the insufficient adrenal function.

If you find that you are treating this kind of pain regularly, see your doctor about possible causes. Any number of conditions can cause chronic pain, and a qualified physician will be able to help identify the cause of your pain. In most cases, the pain is caused by inflammation, and you can temporarily relieved by anti-inflammatory medications, ice, and certain food. Use caution if medications, as long-term use can cause additional problems, especially in the digestive system. Fortunately, these symptoms are typically relieved with the medications for Addison’s Disease.