Adrenal Fatigue is a pathological imbalance of the patient’s hormonal state which is caused by an insufficient hormone production. The ailment manifests itself in exhaustion, fatigue, lack of energy, poor concentration, weight problems, decreased libido, and burnout. Around 40 of 100,000 people suffer from adrenal fatigue.
The adrenal gland is a hormonal gland that is responsible for the production of the important stress hormones adrenalin and cortisol. These hormones are necessary for body functions like the control of the blood pressure, metabolism, and the immune system. In addition to stress hormones the adrenal glands also produces precursor hormones of the sexual hormones testosterone and estrogen.
The adrenal gland is part of a complex network of hormones. Every gland of this network produces important hormones for another gland. In case of a malfunction other hormonal glands thus get influenced. Thus adrenal fatigue can have its origin in the adrenal gland itself, but also in the pituitary or the hypothalamus.
Reasons for a subfunction or an injury of the hormonal gland are manifold and range from an age-induced or stress-induced overload of the hormonal glands to infectious diseases, cancer, and the intake of drugs.
Symptoms and Development of Adrenal Fatigue
The symptoms of adrenal fatigue can be quite different and depend on which hormones are released in reduced quantity. In more than 90 percent of the patients general physical and cognitive weakness, hyperpigmentation of the skin, weight loss, and anorexia occur.
Many patients have low blood pressure, suffer from autoimmune diseases, allergies, fibromyalgia, sleep disorders, burnout, slight depressions, and joint pain. Recurrent infections can also arise due to a weakened immune system.
In addition, a strongly distinctive adrenal fatigue can contribute to Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) as well as to Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS). In especially stressful situations such as surgical interventions or in times of a disease adrenal fatigue can worsen suddenly and evoke a potentially life-threatening condition.
Therapy of Adrenal Fatigue with Bioidentical Hormones
Adrenal fatigue is not completely curable with exception of the tertiary adrenal fatigue. However, adrenal fatigue is well treatable with the administration of lacking hormones for a lifetime, stem cell therapies, and further measures geared towards the patient’s individual needs.
The treatment of adrenal fatigue consists of supplying missing hormones to the body in bioidentical form (Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy, BHRT) and thereby restoring the hormonal balance. First, it is important to undergo a comprehensive investigation of the current hormonal and general state of health to rule out a tumor or infectious diseases as a cause. If required, the underlying cause has to be treated separately.
A change of lifestyle is also recommendable in addition to the administration of bioidentical hormones as part of a therapy. Patients should avoid stress in the family or at work and find more peace. Training exercise and a dietary change can complete the therapy. Therapeutic success is examined frequently by examinations and analysis of the hormone status. The therapy is adjusted as required.
Stem Cell Therapy of Adrenal Fatigue
Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSC) or Stromal Vascular Fraction (SVF) obtained from the patient’s own fat tissue offer a large regenerative potential which can be utilized in the therapy of adrenal fatigue. In the meanwhile we know that the effect of mesenchymal stem cells especially depends on the discharge of cytokines, which further stimulate stationary stem cells inside tissue and organs to start regeneration. Although stem cells are said to be precursor cells of all other body cells, a differentiation into other certain cell types does not occur.
In the course of an outpatient medical procedure a small amount of body fat is obtained by means of liposuction. Mesenchymal stem cells are extracted out of this fat and immediately afterwards injected locally into areas around organs concerned or systemically. Mesenchymal stem cells and SVF have shown their regenerative effect in a number of clinical studies on diseases and weakness of organs or tissue that are based on autoimmunological processes. Therefore the application of stem cells in adrenal fatigue proposes itself.