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Author Archives: Elissa Kline

Monica D., Transsphenoidal Pituitary Surgery

About 5 years ago, I was ending an abusive relationship. I had also stopped getting my period, was gaining weight and was depressed, but I attributed it to stress from that relationship. I decided to start exercising daily and changed my diet and my life habits. I was happy, but despite working out 5 days a weeks and dieting, I was actually gaining weight – not muscle, but fat! My acne was out of control and I started losing my hair. I became more depressed, full of anxiety and very introverted, which is not like me at all. I didn’t have insurance at the time, so for 3.5 years I struggled with people telling me how to eat better and exercise and that I was obese, like this was a life choice. I was progressively feeling more muscle pain and weakness. Walking/physical activity was painful.

Finally, I got insurance and went to the doctor, he put me on metformin for the weight (I didn’t have diabetes), lisinopril for high blood pressure, and an antibiotic for acne. He told me to see my gynecologist for the amenorrhea. My gynecologist diagnosed me with polycystic ovarian syndrome but because Cushing’s has a few overlapping symptoms, they ordered lab tests. When my blood work came back with an extremely high level of cortisol, they referred me to an endocrinologist who specialized in Cushing’s. She ordered more blood work and urine tests, and an MRI. Sure enough there was a tumor! I’d never been happier to hear that I had a tumor. Soon after I had surgery in October of 2015.

Monica D.In the first 6 months, I had significant weight loss, from 236 to 180. I was so happy. My face is no longer a moon face, my acne is almost all gone, I exercise regularly and feel great with minimal pain. I’m no longer depressed or anxious even half as much as I was. My period is back and regular, and I hope that means regular fertility in the future. I am still struggling with weight and gained back about 15 pounds since I was at 180. I’d like to join a coinciding group or be able to talk to other people.

Member: 173491

State: New York

Newsletter: Summer, 2017

Angela R., Transsphenoidal Pituitary Surgery

I feel like I must begin my personal story of Cushing’s disease by first acknowledging that I am one of the “lucky ones” that this disease has happened upon. Maybe I feel the need to tell the story this way to remind myself that I am in fact one of the lucky ones, especially inContinue Reading

Erica M., Transsphenoidal Pituitary Surgery

How do I start my story about my journey with Cushing’s? In May 2011, I had a severe anxiety attack, and that’s what I consider “the day it all started.” Hindsight tells me that I had symptoms for years before but they were not severe enough or were attributed to something else. The anxiety attackContinue Reading

Summary of the Cushing’s Quality of Life Webinar, 2017

On May 6, 2017, Dawn Herring, LMFT, a survivor of Cushing’s, a licensed marriage and family therapist with twenty years’ experience providing trauma therapy and counseling to US marines, presented a quality of life webinar. Dawn started by quoting Mother Teresa – “To keep a lamp burning, we have to keep adding oil.” After doctorsContinue Reading

Affective Alterations in Patients with Cushing’s Syndrome in Remission are Associated with Decreased Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor and Cortisone Levels

Background Affective alterations, including anxiety, emotional lability and apathy might persist in patients who suffered Cushing’s, even long after correction of cortisol excess. Studies using magnetic resonance imaging showed some alterations in the brain of patients in remission for Cushing’s. These alterations were mainly at those regions (hippocampus and prefrontal cortex) in which cortisol actsContinue Reading


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