Steroid profiling in the diagnosis of mild and overt Cushing's syndrome

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Best practice & research. Clinical endocrinology & metabolism


In this review, we provide a comprehensive overview of the utility of steroid profiling for diagnosis of management of overt Cushing syndrome and mild autonomous cortisol secretion. A diagnosis of Cushing syndrome is made through a multistep process that includes confirmation of endogenous hypercortisolism, followed by determination of its cause. Steroid metabolomic testing applied to serum or urine steroids and their metabolites can provide additional and novel insights into alterations of steroid biosynthesis and metabolism and its causes. In particular, increased availability and advances in mass spectrometry-based steroid analysis, coupled with machine learning-based algorithms, have facilitated the development of tailored diagnostic and subtyping approaches for autonomous cortisol secretion and might be useful for detecting low grade autonomous glucocorticoid secretion and in predicting and monitoring of disease severity and associated comorbidities.

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ePub ahead of print