adrenal exhaustion

by Dolores
(Canada)

Hi Wray,

I am 54 years of age in full menopause and have been taking 600 mg. of prometrium for 2 years. I haven't been sleeping well for the past 5 months and losing weight is an impossible task. As a matter of fact, I could gain it just by breathing. The doctor tells me that I have exhausted my adrenals by overdosing on prometrium all this time and that I should stop immediately. He says it has interfered witth my cortisol. I have followed you for time now and I have problems believing that this is the answer. I just wanted to know how you feel about this advise. Just to clear things up, for the majority of the two years, I felt great. This just started about 5 or 6 months ago. I am worried about what will happen if I stop. Should I stop or maybe cut it down considerably? I don't know what to do.
Please help.



Comments for adrenal exhaustion

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Aug 23, 2013
adrenal exhaustion
by: Wray

Hi Dolores I'm surprised you haven't exhausted your liver, rather than your adrenals. Oral progesterone is the least effective Delivery system, "The liver and gut region removed a mean of 96 per cent of the progesterone entering these tissues", see here. Which means the liver has been metabolising the progesterone, leaving you with little active progesterone. Maybe 60mg if you're lucky. What if anything happened 5 months ago? Were you at all stressed in any way? It could just be an accumulative affect of course. Did he check your cortisol levels? Are they low or high? There is one thing you could try, and that's emptying the contents of the capsules, adding it to a small amount of skin cream, and applying that to your skin. You will get the full benefit of progesterone doing that, and it will bypass the liver, see here. If they are 100mg caps, you could open 2 and use that in the am, 200mg at midday and the remaining 200mg at night. Although I suspect you won't need anywhere near that amount of progesterone. Why not see how you fare on 200mgday, 100mg am and 100mg pm. Before you do so, please read our page on Oestrogen Dominance first, as this could occur. If it should, open another 2 caps and apply those in the same way. I would be interested to hear if it helps. Take care Wray

Aug 25, 2013
adrenal exhaustion
by: Dolores

Hi Wray,

I forgot to mention that although I take 600 mg of prometrium, I was under the notion that if you take it vaginally, it does not go through the liver. Was I wrong or did you give me this answer because I forgot to mention this? If I am not wrong, do you think it is adrenal fatigue from taking so much?

Thanks.

Aug 26, 2013
adrenal exhaustion
by: Wray

Hi Dolores You didn't mention you were using the progesterone vaginally, you just said you were taking it. You are right, it does bypass the liver. But much of the progesterone appears to land up in the uterus, see here. You could follow his advice and stop it, and see what happens. If a worsening of symptoms then you do need it. I suggest you come off it slowly, cold turkey is not pleasant. Take care Wray

Oct 19, 2013
Non Classical Adrenal Hyperplasia
by: Anonymous

Anyone know anything about Late onset Adrenal Hyperplasia ?

Thank you

Oct 21, 2013
Non Classical Adrenal Hyperplasia
by: Wray

Hi there It is associated with high levels of 17-Hydroxyprogesterone, see here. This increases in the third trimester mainly due to foetal adrenal production. Have you recently had a child? It's often given to prevent pre-term births, were you given it at any time? 17OHP is also a test for congenital adrenal hyperplasia in infants. This is due to the enzyme 21-hydroxylase, which if lacking, leads to a build-up of 17OHP. This hormone is secreted by the adrenals, which should turn it into cortisol. But a lack of 21-hydroxylase prevents this occurring so it builds up. This leads to the adrenal hyperplasia. This is a general overview here. Has the diagnosis been confirmed, as it can be mistaken for, or have the same symptoms as PCOS, see here. It seems hydrocortisone is the usual treatment, to reduce adrenal testosterone levels, see here. This helps the ovaries get back on track. But I feel all the advice for PCOS could be followed with success. Progesterone suppresses excess testosterone and LH, which are often high. LH stimulates testosterone secretion, so a vicious cycle is formed. Take care Wray

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