As part of this year’s Cushing’s Awareness Challenge, I’ve decided to share our Interview Series again since there was lots of great info in there.
The series is still going on, so if you’d like to be a part of this, just let me know. You can fill out this form and check off that you want to do an interview – Add Your Bio
There are currently 89 interviews in our series. This is the second one:
Robin Smith (staticnrg) hosted as Cushing’s message board members called in to talk about their fight for diagnosis and treatment. Robin opened the show with a brief explanation of what Cushing’s is and what the symptoms are.
We lost a young woman with Cushing’s to suicide in 2014. There are rumors now that another recent loss was suicide as well. In my mind, regardless of what the exact cause was, Cushing’s is at fault. Cushing’s led them to their deaths just as surely as if it had struck the death blow itself. If that is hard for you to fathom, then please allow me to educate you briefly on this dastardly, “most morbid of diseases” and why I feel the way I do.
So, these are only seven of the many, many symptoms of Cushing’s. I had those above – and I often felt like I looked like one of those little bearded dwarves.
Cushing’s affects every part of the body. It’s not like when I had kidney cancer and only the kidney was affected.
Here are some of the many areas affected.
Progressive obesity and skin changes
Weight gain and fatty tissue deposits, particularly around the midsection and upper back, in the face (moon face) and between the shoulders (buffalo hump). Some symptoms such as sudden weight gain, are caused by excess cortisol. The excess cortisol in the body does not increase protein and carbohydrate metabolism. It slows or nearly disables metabolism function, which can cause weight gain (fat accumulation) in the buttocks, abdomen, cheeks, neck, or upper back.
Loss of muscle mass. Some areas of the body, such as the arms and legs, will remain thin.
Pink or purple stretch marks (striae) on the skin of the abdomen, thighs, breasts and arms
Thinning, fragile skin that bruises easily
Slow healing of cuts, insect bites and infections
Women with Cushing’s syndrome may experience:
Thicker or more visible body and facial hair (hirsutism)
Irregular or absent menstrual periods
Men with Cushing’s syndrome may experience:
Other signs and symptoms include:
Depression, anxiety and irritability
Loss of emotional control
New or worsened high blood pressure
Glucose intolerance that may lead to diabetes
Bone loss, leading to fractures over time
Hyperlipidemia (elevated lipids – cholesterol – in the blood stream)
Recurrent opportunistic or bacterial infections
Think you have Cushing’s? Get to a doctor and don’t give up!