Typical features of adrenal insufficiency can be nonspecific and the diagnosis is often missed or delayed. Prompt treatment, both in the acute setting and long term, is required to avoid a potentially catastrophic adrenal crisis.
- Adrenal crises are common in people with adrenal insufficiency and the effects can be catastrophic.
- Early administration of parenteral hydrocortisone is a crucial part of the management of patients undergoing a crisis.
- Healthcare providers are often too slow to give parenteral hydrocortisone because of inappropriate concerns regarding the risks of glucocorticoid use.
- Education and empowerment of individuals with adrenal insufficiency is key to long-term management.
Picture credit: © China Face/iStockphoto.com. Model used for illustrative purposes only.