Research Article| Volume 7, ISSUE 1, P23-42, January 1991

Adrenal Crisis

  • Robert Chin
    Address reprint requests to: Robert Chin, MD, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Department of Medicine, Section of Pulmonary/Critical Care Medicine, Bowman Gray School of Medicine of Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC 27103
    Assistant. Professor of Medicine, Department of Medicine, Section on Pulmonary/Critical Care Medicine, Bowman Gray School of Medicine of Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
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      Although true adrenal insufficiency is an uncommon event in the intensive care unit, the question of its presence is often considered. In addition, the use of exogenous glucocorticoids is so widespread that the possibility of secondary adrenal insufficiency is a frequent concern. Careful history taking and physical examination complemented by review of the laboratory data and the awareness of certain risk factors should help identify most cases. The presentation is often not classic and empiric therapy may be required while awaiting results of diagnostic testing.
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