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Irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS, is a condition characterized by abdominal cramping, bloating, gas, and other changes in the bowels






You are here : 3-RX.com > Medical Encyclopedia > Tests and Exams > ACTH Stimulation Test

ACTH Stimulation Test

Alternate Names : Cortrosyn Stimulation Test, Tests of Adrenal Reserve

Overview & Description | Preparation & Expectations | Results and Values

This test checks how the adrenal glands respond to a certain hormone. The hormone is called adrenocorticotrophic hormone, also known as ACTH. ACTH is made in the pituitary gland and travels through the bloodstream to the adrenal glands. ACTH stimulates the adrenal gland to release cortisol. Cortisol is a key factor in many functions in the body's metabolism of fats, carbohydrates, sodium, potassium, and protein.

Who is a candidate for the test?

This test is ordered when the doctor suspects that a person's adrenal gland is not working the way it should.

How is the test performed?

Cortisol levels in the bloodstream are measured before and after an injection of ACTH into the blood or muscle. A blood sample is taken from a vein on the forearm or hand. First, the skin over the vein is cleaned with an antiseptic. Next, a strong rubber tube, called a tourniquet, is wrapped around the upper arm. This enlarges the veins in the lower arm by restricting blood flow through them. A fine needle is inserted into a vein, and the tourniquet is removed. Blood flows from the vein through the needle and is collected in a syringe or vial for testing in the laboratory. After the needle is withdrawn, the puncture site is covered for a short time to prevent bleeding.


   

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ACTH Stimulation Test: Preparation & Expectations

Author: David T. Moran, MD
Reviewer: Eileen McLaughlin, RN, BSN
Date Reviewed: 09/20/01



Benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH for short, is the enlargement of the prostate gland. It is caused by excess growth of cells in the prostate. This condition is not the same as prostate cancer





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