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What does cortisol level of .09 indicate?

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Posted on Sat, 28 Jun 2014
Question: I have a .09 cortsol level. I have wt gain fatique, sweats round face aches and pains sensitive
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Answered by Dr. Shehzad Topiwala (3 hours later)
Brief Answer:
Cortisol

Detailed Answer:
I am sorry to learn about your symptoms.

A random cortisol reading has little value.

Would you be able to tell me what time this blood sample was drawn? It is quite valuable to know this and interpret the result.

Typically, endocrinologists order blood cortisol at 8 am in the morning and interpret that in the light of symptoms. The result is used to diagnose to adrenal insufficiency.

However, some of the complaints you have are suggestive of the opposite ie Cushings syndrome in which case various 'suppression' tests are performed. For example a pill called dexamethasone is given at midnight and the blood cortisol test is drawn at 8 am the next morning.

I would like to comment further that hydrocodone can suppress the 'hypothalami-pituitary-adrenal axis' meaning it can give a lower blood cortisol value. So this will need to be taken into consideration whilst interpreting your cortisol result
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Follow up: Dr. Shehzad Topiwala (23 hours later)
the blood was taken at 9;00 am after fasting. what would cause the cortisol to be so low.
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Answered by Dr. Shehzad Topiwala (36 hours later)
Brief Answer:
Follow up

Detailed Answer:
Such a low level of cortisol is considered severely abnormal.

However, it is a laboratory result and doctors treat people, not lab results. So the broader perspective comes into play here.

As an endocrinologist, I take such a result quite seriously and examine my patient carefully to see if (s)he has evidence of adrenal insufficiency. I also run further tests (such as ACTH stimulation test, Cortisol binding globulin) to confirm the diagnosis and to rule out other potential causes of a low cortisol level.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Answered by
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Dr. Shehzad Topiwala

Endocrinologist

Practicing since :2001

Answered : 1663 Questions

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What does cortisol level of .09 indicate?

Brief Answer: Cortisol Detailed Answer: I am sorry to learn about your symptoms. A random cortisol reading has little value. Would you be able to tell me what time this blood sample was drawn? It is quite valuable to know this and interpret the result. Typically, endocrinologists order blood cortisol at 8 am in the morning and interpret that in the light of symptoms. The result is used to diagnose to adrenal insufficiency. However, some of the complaints you have are suggestive of the opposite ie Cushings syndrome in which case various 'suppression' tests are performed. For example a pill called dexamethasone is given at midnight and the blood cortisol test is drawn at 8 am the next morning. I would like to comment further that hydrocodone can suppress the 'hypothalami-pituitary-adrenal axis' meaning it can give a lower blood cortisol value. So this will need to be taken into consideration whilst interpreting your cortisol result