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ACTH Deficiency

ACTH Deficiency Definition

ACTH deficiency or isolated adrenocorticotropic hormone deficiency is a disorder which arises from a decrease or absence of the production of adrenocorticotropic hormone (also known as ACTH hormone). The pituitary gland is the one which produces this hormone. A decrease on the concentration of adrenocorticotropic in a person's blood would lead to reduced adrenal hormone secretions. This reduction of secretion of adrenal hormones could result into hypoadrenalism or adrenal deficiency. Adrenal insufficiency would then lead to loss of weight, a lack of appetite or anorexia nervosa (which is also a psychological disorder), nausea, weakness, vomiting, and hypotension or low blood pressure. Other uncommon symptoms include the lack or absence of pubic hair in some female patients; the lack or absence armpit hairs; having pale skin. These symptoms can be so general that is why proper diagnosis is often totally missed or delayed. For this reason, some physicians tend to believe that the disorder could be more common than had been previously thought.

ACTH Deficiency Pituitary Gland

The pituitary gland is a gland that is the size of a pea and is found at the brain?s base. It is surrounded with bones. The hypothalamus is the endocrine organ that controls the pituitary gland function. It is then the pituitary gland which regulates numerous hormones which control several functions and also several organs within the human body.

ACTH Deficiency Treatment

The treatment that is available for this disorder varies greatly as it depends on the sex and age of the patients that are afflicted with this deficiency. Also, physicians consider several other factors before undertaking any particular treatment. Factors such as the severity of the problem and also the exact number of hormones that are involved have to be considered. Other underlying causes have to be considered as well. Hormone replacement should be administered immediately to restore hormonal balance. Also, the patient should be educated regarding his condition. He should know any complications that can arise because of ACH deficiency and what he could do to improve his condition. He should also be educated of the things that he must avoid to further aggravate his condition. Hydrocortisone and cortisone may be administered in divided doses to replace the deficient hormones. Most of the patients of this illness do not require more than 20 milligrams of hydrocortisone daily. When this illness is coupled with other hormonal deficiencies, it could be possible that a life-time maintenance of hormonal therapy would be prescribed by the physician.

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