T Nation

Doc Ignored Adrenal Fatigue Symptoms


I have almost all of the symptoms of stage 3 adrenal fatigue and a lifestyle conducive to such a condition.

I went to the doctor complaining of these symptoms and requested blood work. He said he “didn’t think it was hormonal” and ran a few tests. I got the results today:

TSH 2.41 (.3-5)
T4 Free 1.4 (.8-1.8)
Total Test 284 (241-827)
Glucose 96 (70-100)
Creatinine 1.5 (.5-1.3)
BUN 25 (5-21)
Sodium 139 (135-145)
Potassium 4.6 (3.5-5.5)
Chloride 97 (96-108)
Bicarbonate 28 (18-30)
AGAP 14 (5-16)
Calcium 10 (8.5-10.5)
AST 21 (0-45)
ALT 19 (0-65)
All Phos 50 (38-114)
Bili Total .7 (.1-1.5)
Total Protein 7.4 (6.7-8.4)
Albumin 5.1 (4.3-5.2)

The doc said everything was normal, but he is worried about the Creatinine and BUN, which I understand can be elevated by a high protein diet. It looks like he obviously disregarded my hormone concerns, considering he didn’t test for cortisol, E, etc. and failed to note my abysmal test levels.

Here are my questions:

  1. Can any of you draw any conclusions about my adrenal fatigue based on this blood work?

  2. Should I be more concerned about the Creatinine/BUN levels?

  3. What should I do next? See an endo? Request certain blood tests from this doc?

Note: I read the Thyroid Basics sticky but havent taken my temps yet (however I am often cold and get chills through out the day - for what it’s worth).


I dont have an answer for you but im interested in your symptoms, what were you experiencing. Im working on getting my high E2 down (38) I for that last two weeks ive been stressed/anxiety and slight tremble in hands/arms. Wasnt sure if it was E2 related and maybe adrenal fatigue as ive never experienced this before. @JayDubya



You know that you need to report oral body temperatures.

Are you iodine deficient from not using iodized salt?

Get a high potency B complex multi-vit with trace elements, no iron [for males], and iodine+selenium

Where are you located? -NYC
That sucks as you cannot order your own lab work.

Your upping your training in this condition is really making things worse.

see these stickies found here: About the T Replacement Category

  • advice for new guys
  • things that damage your hormones
  • protocol for injections
  • thyroid basics
  • finding a TRT doc

fT3 <-- the active hormone
rT3 <-- blocks fT3
AM cortisol, at 8AM please
DHEA-S - other adrenal hormone

List all meds, Rx or OTC
List other health concerns.

Most symptoms of low thyroid function are the same as low T.

You cannot accomplish anything by taking a week off. Read Wilson’s book.


I definitely haven’t been too stressed or anxious, in fact I’ve been fairly numb emotionally. My symptoms included:

Hair loss
Muscle loss
Light headedness
Lack of libido
Inability to think clearly
Inability to recover from minor physical exertion


You can deal with this. Answering a question should be easy.
You need to be more proactive, hard now I know.



My morning temp was 97.2.

I don’t know if I’m iodine deficient, but I started iodine/selenium supps yesterday and will monitor my morning temp for improvement.

Here are the other meds and supps I’m taking:
Fish oil
Vit C
B complex

Can one get iodine deficiency from sweating? Before I started having symptoms, I was sweating a ridiculous amount on a daily basis and then had a bad fever which really intensified my symptoms.

Should I be concerned about the elevated creatinine and BUN levels?


You should be seeking the medical cause of the heavy sweating. Yes, sweating can carry off some iodine, but in your case the sweating is the problem.

Need waking and mid-afternoon oral body temperatures.
Check more than once.


Afternoon temp averaged at 97.5.

The sweating was a result of long commutes on hot subways/city streets, long workouts after work outside in the heat, and long periods on the weekends tanning outside. The symptoms were exacerbated by a severe fever and later a week long trip to Mexico where I spent all day outside drinking.

If it is an iodone deficiency, how soon should I start noticing a rise in temps now that I’m taking iodine supps?


Note that thyroid issues probably mean that transdermal T is not an option for you. And all of that sweating means that you are a poor candidate for transdermal T.

Temperature recovery time. You would also expect to feel improved energy and mental clarity. Depends on how much iodine you take. Guys taking 25-50mg per day have felt changes in 3 days, but often not that dramatic.



Quick recap: I have symptoms of adrenal fatigue, also looking into the possibility of iodine deficiency.

Question: My body is in a very catabolic state right now. What can I do to stop and reverse the catabolism?


Do you have IBS-D? I had similar blood test results, and symptoms, brain fog, low-T, fatigue, sweating. I have adrenal issues. High Cortisol, low DHEA, Low vD3, high Rt3, Low T, Low E2 (makes you sweat)… I have started DHEA, Pregnenolone and most importantly for me, 7000mcg daily of oral liquid B12. I don’t believe I have absorbed b12 since I was very young, (do to almost daily diarrhea or loss of intrinsic factor in my gut) and my IBS was actually a B12 deficiency for all these years.

I feel 100 times better in only a week. I just wish I had figured all this out before I started TRT.


Is very good for the intestines.


I don’t have IBS but have had way more gas than usual the last few months.

I took DHEA for a week or two but it made my really wired. Also my nips got sore so I was afraid it was converting to E.

I’m mainly worried about treating adrenal fatigue in a catabolic state. A big adrenal doc on the Internet (Dr Lam) recommends against taking DHEA, pregnant lone, and other common adrenal supps if you are in a persistent catabolic state.


TRT fixes catabolic state.
TRT with low thyroid function or low cortisol can be a problem. See the stickies.



Quick recap:
I had a sudden onset of adrenal fatigue symptoms following a physically and emotionally stressful summer. I went to a doc 2 months ago who did some blood work and mostly dismissed my symptoms.

In the interim, I’ve been treating it as adrenal fatigue by taking rhodolia, ashwagandha, and other herbs/vitamins and have seen improvement (no more afternoon crash or mental fog, less gassy after meals, and higher morning/afternoon temps). I went a new doc yesterday who seems to think it’s exclusively a thyroid issue (based on new blood work below) and gave me thyroid extract to take for 90 days. She dismissed the adrenal fatigue because my DHEA was within normal range. My most noticeable symptoms at this point are a lack of libido and an inability to get myself pumped up or excited, like you would before a big lift, etc.

TSH 3.05 (.27-4.20) [Up from 2.45 two months ago]
T4 6.9 (4.5-11.7)
T4, free 1.5 (.93-1.70)
T3 86 (80-200)
T3, free 2.8 (2.0-4.4)
Reverse T3 16 (18-24)
Thyroid Peroxidase Antibody 5 (<34)
DHEA 290 (160-449)
Estradiol 12.4 (25.8-60)
SHBG 55 (17-55)
T 532 (249-836) [Up from 280 two months ago]
Free T 8.05 (4.7-24.40)
Cortisol 22.3 (2.3-11.9 for that time of day, 4-8pm)

Should I continue herbal self-treatment for adrenal fatigue, take the docs thyroid supplements, or both?
Any thoughts on the increase in TSH and T?
Any other recommendations on where to go from here?


Update: After seeing continual improvements in body temp (morning and after noon temp up .5 degrees), my temps randomly started dropping again about a week and half ago. Now they are averaging lower than they were when I began treatment and some mid-day fatigue has returned.

It seems like KSman hasn’t been around for a while, so if anyone else who has had adrenal fatigue knows what’s going on, I’d appreciate some insight.