The Cushing’s Symptoms I Shouldn’t Have Ignored

Paris Dancy avatar

by Paris Dancy |

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Communication involves a message being delivered and a message being received.

Experiencing symptoms of a pituitary gland tumor or Cushing’s disease is an example of our body communicating with us, telling us something isn’t right.

The worst thing we can do is ignore our body when it is trying to communicate with us. Below, I’ve indicated a few symptoms that I shouldn’t have ignored prior to my Cushing’s disease and pituitary tumor diagnoses, along with other symptoms people with these issues may experience.

I experienced extreme weight gain, putting on 100 pounds in a year, even though my eating habits had not been bad. My body underwent a noticeable change in appearance. I lost muscle mass, and my midsection got larger. Some people with Cushing’s even develop a buffalo hump, which is when fat accumulates above the shoulders.

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Other physical changes I experienced were bulging eyes, a torn shoulder labrum, thinning hair, and pain in my lower back. As a result of the weight gain, I developed sleep apnea. Excessive tiredness, sudden mood changes, and constant nausea are other ways the body may try to communicate that something is off.

Listening to our bodies is extremely important. Ignoring symptoms or hoping they will simply go away is not advisable. If we fail to address an issue, allowing it to linger or trying to sweep it under the rug, it will likely rear its head again and become a bigger problem over time.

I learned this lesson the hard way. I allowed some of my symptoms to persist a little too long before I addressed them. I told myself I was just stressed out, but I didn’t tell anybody else what I was feeling. I should have kept all lines of communication open, especially with my wife, who works in healthcare.

When our body tries to tell us something, we shouldn’t ignore it. Any symptoms should be brought up with your doctor as soon as possible. The more information and understanding we have, the more capable we will be of making decisions about our treatment.


Note: Cushing’s Disease News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Cushing’s Disease News or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to Cushing’s.


Margaret Moran avatar

Margaret Moran

I couldn’t agree more with this article. I had all of the same symptoms as the author (weight gain, buffalo hump, tiredness etc.) and continually went to doctors. I was told over and over again that I was under too much stress and that it was all in my head! At one point, almost four years into this, I developed blotches on my skin. I went to my family doctor who referred me to a dermatologist. He took one look at me and said, “that’s from steroids”. This triggered my family doctor and I was finally diagnosed! This was over 30 years ago. Thank goodness more doctors know about Cushings and are more aware when patients present with these symptoms.

Zoann Murphy avatar

Zoann Murphy

This article should be mandatory reading for all primary care doctors! I was very lucky to have an ER doctor who took one look at me and said "you have Cushing's!" and I promptly responded "what's Cushing's?" I'd been told for three years that I just needed to stop eating and start exercising after I gained 150 lbs in 10 months, had the buffalo hump and moon face, not to mention the mood swings and the exhaustion. Even after the official diagnosis, I still had trouble convincing new doctors that I had Cushing's. It is finally getting to be known, but I still get the doctors' knee-jerk reaction of lose weight and exercise when I meet a new provider.


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