Addison’s disease MISCONCEPTIONS

Addison’s disease affects about one person in TWENTY MILLION. In the United States there would be about ten to twelve cases, with similar numbers in Europe.

A quick check on the search engines at the time of writing reveals 14,440 websites on MSN and 83,800 on Google. All deal with the subject of this rare disease.

Does EACH patient in the States need between 1,444 and 8,380 pages of information to help him?

And is the information GOOD?

A quick check of the first entry on the Google list delivered the NIDDK page which has no AUTHOR NAME.

There were plenty of pronouncements about what the anonymous author believed the facts to be, but ABSOLUTELY NO ACADEMIC REFERENCES. The page ended with suggested reading, which left the most important author out – Thomas Addison himself.

The Internet is a rumour-mill, with one person of dubious accuracy taking the word of an anonymous publisher and on the strength of that, publishing again.

This is a very dangerous situation in the world of medicine.

The popularity of Addison’s disease has never been higher. It was announced in the press that John F. Kennedy had the condition, and suddenly everybody has the “I AM JFK” mentality. Similarly, Elvis Presley became addicted to steroids, so many people have the “I AM ELVIS” death-wish.

True Addison’s disease is HORRIBLE. Those who have it want to be free of it – but it has never been cured.

When bad doctors declare people to have this condition, the true sufferers are outnumbered by phoneys – the true condition is RARE, RARE, RARE!

So when each person who IMAGINES that he has got it writes a page on the Web, the truth becomes totally buried.


That is what I did. Dr. Thomas Addison discovered the condition. If you don’t believe him, who will you believe?

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Thomas Addison first noticed the anemia of two patients who died and two more who walked away from the hospital. The dead patients had damaged “suprarenal capsules”. He assumed that the two who left must have had these too.

A report – not in Addison’s words – appeared ( ), in which he made NO MENTION of dark skin. HE HAD NOT NOTICED.

Just over five years later he published a book ( ), in which he mentioned the pigmentation of the skin. You can see his signature at .

It was James Wootten ( ) who was first seen to have a SUBTLE discoloration of skin, followed by James Jackson ( ), Henry Patten ( ) and John Iveson ( ).

NONE of these patients was in any way discoloured so as to draw attention to themselves in a crowd. Nor was any of them emaciated or otherwise sick-looking.

This is a collection of healthy, good-looking corpses!

It is true that Louis Martineau published a black image of the patient Gaget ( ), but this appears to be because he could not afford proper colours. The text of the Martineau thesis emphasises that the hair was blond, turning to chestnut and that the eyes were blue – unlike the picture.


There is NO SUCH THING as an “Addison Crisis”. That is to say, even an expert does not know what it is.

The author nearly died of untreated Addison’s disease several times. At no time did some phenomenon take place that would draw attention.

A doctor said to the author “If you had SEEN an Addison Crisis”… SEEN? The author felt it on his own body! A steroid addict may panic, and become hysterical before his energy disappears and he goes from paranoia to coma, but true Addison sufferers simply fade away.