Diagnostic performance of basal cortisol level at 0900-1300h in adrenal insufficiency

Autoři: Worapaka Manosroi aff001;  Mattabhorn Phimphilai aff001;  Jiraporn Khorana aff002;  Pichitchai Atthakomol aff004
Působiště autorů: Division of Endocrinology, Department of Internal Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Chiang Mai University Hospital, Chiang Mai, Thailand aff001;  Division of Pediatric Surgery, Department of Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, Chiang Mai University Hospital, Chiang Mai, Thailand aff002;  Clinical Epidemiology and Clinical Statistic Center, Faculty of Medicine, Chiang Mai University Hospital, Chiang Mai, Thailand aff003;  Department of Orthopedics, Faculty of Medicine, Chiang Mai University Hospital, Chiang Mai, Thailand aff004
Vyšlo v časopise: PLoS ONE 14(11)
Kategorie: Research Article
doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0225255



An ACTH stimulation test is the standard diagnostic test for adrenal insufficiency (AI). We aimed to investigate the diagnostic performance between serum morning (0800 h) cortisol and serum basal (0900–1300 h) cortisol levels and determine the proper cut-off point to facilitate AI diagnosis to reduce the number of tests.


A six-year retrospective study was performed in a tertiary care medical center. We identified 416 patients who had undergone either low (LDT) or high dose (HDT) ACTH stimulation outpatient tests. AI was defined as a peak serum cortisol level of <500 nmol/L at 30 or 60 minutes after LDT or HDT. The associations between AI and serum basal and morning cortisol levels were demonstrated by logistic regression model. Diagnostic performance was evaluated by ROC analysis.


Of the 416 patients, 93 (22.4%) were categorized as having AI. The adjusted area under the curve (AUC) for the basal cortisol level for the diagnosis of AI was significantly higher than that for the morning cortisol (0.82 vs 0.69, p <0.001) level. The proposed cut-off values for the basal cortisol were <85 nmol/L (specificity 99.7%) and >350 nmol/L(sensitivity 98.9%). By using these proposed cut-off points, approximately 30% of the ACTH stimulation tests could be eliminated.


The serum basal cortisol level with the proposed cut-off points were considered as an alternative option for diagnosis of AI. Utilizing the serum basal cortisol level can facilitate AI diagnosis as it is convenient, is not a time-specific test and has a high diagnostic performance.

Klíčová slova:

Cortisol – Creatinine – Diagnostic medicine – Cholesterol – Serum albumin – Traditional medicine – Traditional ACTH stimulation test – Low dose ACTH stimulation test


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Článek vyšel v časopise


2019 Číslo 11