Cushing syndrome



When the body has too much of the hormone cortisol, over time, that can lead to Cushing syndrome.


Cortisol plays many roles throughout the body. It helps control blood pressure, lowers inflammation, and keeps the heart and blood vessels working properly. Cushing syndrome may develop when the body has too much cortisol due to taking glucocorticoid medicine. Or the body might make too much cortisol because of a tumor or another medical problem.


Cushing syndrome can cause a wide variety of symptoms, depending on how much extra cortisol is in the body. Some common symptoms include a fatty hump between the shoulders, a rounded face, and pink or purple stretch marks on the skin. Cushing syndrome also can lead to high blood pressure, bone loss and, in some cases, type 2 diabetes.


The best treatment for each individual depends on the cause of Cushing syndrome. If too much glucocorticoid medicine is the source of the problem, lowering the dosage may help. If a tumor is causing Cushing syndrome, surgery to remove it may be needed. In some cases, radiation therapy or medicine to control cortisol production might be options.