Your endocrinologist may request an Adrenocorticotropic Hormone (ACTH) Stimulation test. The doctor uses the test to look at how well your adrenal gland and pituitary gland are working. 

Process

A nurse will give a shot of a medicine called cosyntropin into the patient’s muscle. Cosyntropin is a man-made portion of a hormone that is usually produced by the pituitary gland. (Sometimes blood will be drawn before this injection.) The doctor will examine these levels to see how the body responded to the medication. 

Blood is always drawn exactly one hour after the injection. It’s your responsibility to go to Regions’ Outpatient Lab to have these labs drawn. (Sometimes blood is drawn before the injection as well.) 

Side Effects

Serious side effects are unlikely, but minor irritation (i.e. redness, swelling) at the injection site may occur. If these symptoms persist or worsen, notify your doctor. 

Tell your doctor immediately if any of the following occur: 

  • Severe swelling 
  • Irregular heartbeat 
  • Headache 
  • Dizziness 
  • Blurred vision 

A serious allergic reaction to Cosyntropin is also unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if any of the following occur: 

  • A rash 
  • Itching 
  • Swelling 
  • Severe dizziness 
  • Trouble breathing 

Contact your doctor with any concerns about other side effects not listed here. 

This information is for educational purposes only. It is not intended to replace the advice of your health care providers. If you have any questions, talk with your doctor or others on your health care team.