Adrenal Disorder Specialist

Anna Boron, MD -  - Endocrinologist

Arkangel Endocrinology & Diabetes

Anna Boron, MD

Endocrinologist located in Phoenix, AZ

Adrenal gland disorders can affect your entire body, depending on the hormone that’s affected and whether the problem causes abnormal hormone levels. Anna Boron, MD, at Arkangel Endocrinology & Diabetes in Phoenix, Arizona, creates a customized treatment plan based on each patient’s health and teaches the self-care tips needed to maintain their wellbeing. To schedule an appointment, call the office or use the online booking feature.

Adrenal Disorder Q & A

What hormones are produced by the adrenal glands?

The adrenal glands release hormones that are essential for your health and wellbeing.

Cortisol

Cortisol regulates your metabolism, suppresses inflammation, regulates blood pressure, increases blood glucose levels, and helps control your sleep/wake cycle. It’s known as the stress hormone because larger amounts are released when you face stress.

Aldosterone

This hormone has a primary role in regulating blood pressure, blood pH, and levels of sodium and potassium.

DHEA and androgenic steroids

The adrenal glands produce weak male hormones that are converted into estrogen in the ovaries and into androgens in the testes.

Epinephrine (adrenaline) and norepinephrine

Both hormones prepare your body to react to a threat or stress by increasing your heart rate, boosting blood flow to your muscles and brain, and assisting in glucose metabolism.

What is adrenal insufficiency?

Primary adrenal insufficiency, or Addison’s disease, occurs when an autoimmune disorder damages your adrenal glands. As a result, the glands don’t produce enough cortisol.

When you lack cortisol, you’ll develop symptoms such as:

  • Extreme fatigue
  • Decreased appetite
  • Weight loss without trying
  • Loss of body hair
  • Nausea, diarrhea, or vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Muscle or joint pain
  • Depression
  • Sexual dysfunction in women

Primary adrenal insufficiency often causes salt cravings, dehydration, low blood pressure, and skin darkening. Secondary adrenal insufficiency is more likely to cause low blood sugar.

What other adrenal disorders might I develop?

Adrenal gland disorders may develop due to a problem in the adrenal glands or the pituitary gland, since it sends out hormones that activate the adrenals.

Overactive adrenal gland

The adrenal glands may develop benign or cancerous nodules that actively produce hormones.

Cushing syndrome

Cushing syndrome occurs when the adrenal glands produce too much cortisol. It leads to weight gain and fatty deposits in the face, back of the neck, and abdomen, while the arms and legs remain thin.

Hyperaldosteronism

When the glands overproduce aldosterone, blood pressure increases and potassium levels drop.

Pheochromocytoma

Pheochromocytoma is an adrenal gland tumor that causes increased production of adrenaline or noradrenaline.

Congenital adrenal hyperplasia

This genetic disorder decreases the production of cortisol, aldosterone, or both, while increasing the production of androgen, which can lead to male characteristics in girls and early puberty in boys. If the condition isn’t severe, it can go undiagnosed for years.

Adrenal cancer

Adrenal cancers are rare and usually spread to other organs before they’re diagnosed. Cancerous tumors may produce and release one or more of the adrenal hormones.

If you’ve become fatigued or show any of the other symptoms of an adrenal disorder, call Arkangel Endocrinology & Diabetes or book an appointment online.