Skip to main content

Addisons Disease Treatment

Addison's disease is when your adrenal glands do not produce certain hormones. We look at how Addison's disease can be treated.

Addison's disease is the condition caused by failure of the adrenal glands to produce important hormones called cortisol and aldosterone.

Various diseases can cause the glands to fail. By far the commonest cause nowadays is a disorder of the natural immune system. For reasons that are not fully understood the immune system produces antibodies to its own adrenal tissue which gradually destroys it. This is similar to the way in which a transplanted organ such as a kidney is rejected if there is not a good tissue match between the donor and the recipient.

The condition comes on very slowly, often with vague weakness and tiredness over many months. This is associated with gradual darkening of the skin, like a suntan. In the later stages, the person with Addison's becomes very weak and dizzy (usually due to low blood pressure and mild dehydration), usually with sickness and vomiting.

Addison's disease would normally be treated through taking tablets of which there are two possible options depending upon whether cortisol or aldosterone needs to be replaced:

Hydrocortisone is prescribed for cortisol replacement and should be taken as soon as possible after waking, with further doses at lunch or tea time or both. The usual total dose is 20-30 mgs/day.

Fludrocortisone is prescribed for aldosterone replacement and is taken daily or on alternate days at a typical daily dose of 50 or 100 micrograms.

Both courses of treatment are for life and you must ensure you strictly adhere to the recommended dose.

Your specialist will carefully prescribe your tablet dose and adjust your treatment to ensure your are on the lowest dose necessary. This will ensure that you do not suffer any side effects.

Specialists Offering Addisons Disease Treatment

Mr Nitin Modi

Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon

MBBS, MS Orthopaedics FRCS (T&O), MS Orthopaedics, MRCS, FCPS Orthopaedics, Diploma Orthopaedics

BMI St Edmunds Hospital

View profile Book online

Professor Paul Dimitri

Professor of Child Health & Consultant in Paediatric Endocrinology


BMI Thornbury Hospital

View profile Book online

Dr Jonathan Katz

Consultant Endocrinologist


BMI The Cavell Hospital 1 more BMI The Kings Oak Hospital

View profile Book online

Mr Parameshwara Prakash

Consultant Endocrinologist


BMI The Highfield Hospital

View profile Book online

View all

Ways to pay

credit card

Pay for yourself

Pay for yourself with our fixed price packages. This includes your pre-assessment, treatment, follow-ups and 6 months' aftercare

Find out more


Pay with health insurance

We are widely recognised by health insurers. Ask your insurer about your cover and for an insurer pre-authorisation code

Find out more

direct debit

Spread the cost

Pay for yourself with the BMI card and spread the cost over 12 months, interest-free (terms and conditions apply)

Find out more

General Enquiries