Secondary adrenal insufficiency is extremely similar to adrenal insufficiency. The problem still remains where your body does not make enough of the endocrine hormones that it needs. However the cause is slightly different. In your brain you have a pituitary gland. This gland sends signals to your adrenal glands via a hormone known as adrenocorticotropin also known as ACTH. ACTH controls your body in terms of managing the salt, fats, and proteins that are in it. By doing this your blood pressure stays where it should and your body operates normal with the perfect balances of nutrients.
However when secondary adrenal insufficiency happens your pituitary gland doesn’t produce enough ACTH. This causes your body not to get the signals it need to operate correctly. The levels of cortisol will also decrease because of the lack of ACTH. It becomes a serious problem as the levels of cortisol and ACTH drop as it can cause your body to go into adrenal crisis which can lead to death.
Secondary adrenal insufficiency can happen for multiple reasons. The first and one of the most common is childbirth. If the female loses a large amount of blood during the birth process then the child is at risk for it.
Another common problem is many steroid medicines cause secondary adrenal insufficiency. If you’re on steroid medicine and stop taking it you will actually increase your risk for the insufficiency. That is why many doctors are now learning to treat adrenal fatigue or adrenal exhaustion in a more natural way and use steroids when no other options are available.
There are many signs of secondary adrenal insufficiency. If you notice any of the following signs you may have secondary adrenal insufficiency. You may experience unexpected weight loss. You may also notice that you have a decreased appetite. Another common symptom is that you get join pain or increased seating and shaking even though you’re not doing anything out of the ordinary. Watch out for any of these symptoms as you may have secondary adrenal insufficiency.