Addison's disease

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Addison's disease

[for Thomas AddisonAddison, Thomas,
1793–1860, English physician, b. near Newcastle, grad. Univ. of Edinburgh (M.D., 1815). In 1837 he became a physician at Guy's Hospital, London, where he conducted important research on pneumonia, tuberculosis, and other diseases.
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], progressive disease brought about by atrophy of the outer layer, or cortex, of the adrenal glandadrenal gland
or suprarenal gland
, endocrine gland (see endocrine system) about 2 in. (5.1 cm) long situated atop each kidney. The outer yellowish layer (cortex) of the adrenal gland secretes about 30 steroid hormones, the most important of which are aldosterone and
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; it is also called chronic adrenocortical insufficiency. The deterioration of this tissue causes a decrease in the secretion of steroid hormones, many of which are necessary for the maintenance of life. In many cases the cause of the wasting process is not known; in others the predominant cause is the formation and infiltration of tumors, inflammatory disease, or surgery. Symptoms are increasing weakness, abnormal pigmentation of the skin and mucous membranes, weight loss, low blood pressure, dehydration, and gastrointestinal upsets. Secondary Addison's disease is most commonly caused by acute withdrawal of steroids. Once considered inevitably fatal, Addison's disease can now be treated with injections of adrenocortical hormones.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Addison’s Disease


(named after the English physician T. Addison, who first described it in 1855), also known as bronzed skin disease. It is caused by a chronic malfunction of the suprarenal cortex of the adrenal glands and is externally characterized by a bronze coloration of the skin. A relatively rare disease, it manifests itself primarily in the 15–to 30–year age group. Addison’s disease is caused by the destruction of the adrenal glands, usually by tuberculosis or more rarely by syphilis, atrophy of the suprarenal cortex, tumor, or amyloidosis. The disease develops gradually.

As a result of the decreased secretion of adrenocortical hormones (mineralcorticoids), the secretion of sodium and chlorides in the urine increases while their amount in the blood decreases, which, together with retention of potassium, leads to the dehydration of the organism. The blood pressure falls. The lowered glucocorticoid content disrupts carbohydrate and protein exchange, causing muscular weakness, adynamia, rapid fatigue, and weight loss. The dark bronze coloring is caused by a special pigment. Hormone treatment is indicated.


Zefirova, G. S. Addisonova bolezn’. Moscow, 1963. (With bibliography.)
“Bolezni endokrinnoi sistemy.” Edited by V. G. Baranov. (Rukovodstvo po vnutrennim bolezniam, vol. 7.) Leningrad, 1966.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Addison's disease

[′ad·ə·sənz di‚zēz]
A primary failure or insufficiency of the adrenal cortex to secrete hormones.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Our sister publication The Whole Dog Journal puts the incidence higher: "Veterinarians who routinely test for Addison's often find it, suggesting that the illness is not really rare but rather under diagnosed and under reported.
In Addison's disease the body is unable to produce enough cortisol and affected animals may become ill at times of stress.
Addison's experience at quarterback made Frost comfortable putting him back at that spot.
However, that she remains an enigma, even at the fascinating novel's end, somehow makes Addison's death all the more harrowing." CHELSEY PHILPOT
Although it can be challenging to keep up with the many characters who provide their version of Addison's story, Griffin effectively negotiates their different voices.
The symptoms of Addison's disease appear gradually but become increasingly obvious over a period of several weeks or months.
The justices ruled unanimously that they were satisfied that Wolford has had no conversations with prosecutors handling Addison's appeal and has been blocked from computer access to files on the case.
Addison's actions were very costly to the credit union, and financial institution regulators have a responsibility to hold accountable those parties-institutions or individuals-when they undermine safety and soundness," NCUA Board Chairman Debbie Matz said.
Addison's disease, named for the 19th century physician who defined this adrenal gland dysfunction, is also known as hypoadrenocorticism or adrenal insufficiency.
Writing in clear and lively prose, telling a few new stories, citing some primary sources, and using surprising secondary sources and cartoons available on the Internet, Addison offers three brief chapters on young Winston, 1874-1901; "The Renegade, 1901-1911"; and the "Lilliput Napoleon, 1911-1915." In two longer chapters, Addison judiciously recounts "The Winstonburg Line, 1915-1924" and "Respectability Won and Lost, 1924-1939." Addison's longest chapter is on World War II, "The Making of a Hero, 1939-1945," which is followed by a short chapter, "Climbing Olympus, 1945-1965."
Addison's business is involved in teaching building skills to ex-offenders and he has been awarded a contract to provide training inside prisons.
JOSEPH ADDISON'S Cato: A Tragedy (1713) captured the imagination of Revolutionary Whigs in colonial North America in much the way that Uncle Tom's Cabin (1852) would shape the understanding of a later generation of Yankees.