Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Addison's Disease and High Calcium Levels

A woman said to me,

"I am wondering if you are aware of high calcium levels associated with Addison's?"

Yes. Since the Adrenal glands are responsible for regulating the minerals in your blood, if the adrenal glands are not working well, your levels of minerals can be unbalanced. I am allergic to cow's milk, so I didn't absorb much calcium at all. Now I take three calcium citrate pills each day. I also take fludrocortisone which keeps my minerals in balance. This is how I avoid high calcium levels.

Most people with Addison's disease need to take fludrocortisone to replace the adrenal hormone aldosterone which normally keeps minerals in the proper balance. Every year I have my mineral levels tested (a blood test) in case I need to make adjustments in my medication or supplements.


It controls mineral balances, principally salt and potassium, and will consequently affect blood pressure. It will raise my blood pressure, but it may take a few days before it will take effect. It doesn’t effect blood sugar much at all. You need to take extra potassium when you take Fludrocortisone because it will cause your body to dump potassium which will cause your blood pressure to go up too much. I tried dropping one potassium pill and my blood pressure did go up. I take four potassium pills each day (10 MEQ each)

Fludrocortisone will also help control calcium levels and keep them from getting too high in your body by excreting extra calcium from your body. 


  1. I also take fludrocortisone, 0.5 mg daily and my minerals and blood pressure have always been fine, except for high calcium. The doctors have told me not to take potassium, since in addisons our bodies retain potassium and secrete salt. Everyone's needs are different though. Thank you!

  2. Yes, with Addison's disease the body retains potassium and secretes salt. I used to drink a gallon a day and still be thirsty. I take .1mg (the normal dose for Addison's) of Fludrocortisone each morning. This makes me dump potassium and retain salt. I also have to take 2 potassium pills. It all ends up pretty normal. As you say, everyone is different.