On March 1, Natalia Genere, MD and collaborators had their study titled, “Interpretation of Abnormal Dexamethasone Suppression Test is Enhanced with Use of Synchronous Free Cortisol Assessment,” published in the “Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.”
Dexamethasone suppression tests (DST) are used to assess if the body is producing excess cortisol. Dexamethasone absorption and metabolism can influence DSTs through altered cortisol binding.
Genere and colleagues aimed to “determine the normal ranges of free cortisol during DST in participants without adrenal disorders and to identify the population of patients where post-DST free cortisol measurements add value to the diagnostic workup.”
The cross-sectional study was conducted amongst 168 adult volunteers, 47 of which were women on oral contraceptive therapy (OCP), 66 were women not on OCP and 55 were men; and 196 patients undergoing evaluation for hypercortisolism, 16 of which were women on OCP.
When measuring post-DST dexamethasone, free cortisol and total cortisol, the study results indicated that post-DST free cortisol measurements were “valuable in patients with optimal dexamethasone concentrations and post-DST total cortisol between 1.8 and 5 mcg/dL.”