Background: The clinical practice shows that many low-dose ACTH-stimulation tests have a false positive result. The aim of the study was to determine the diagnostic accuracy of a low-dose ACTH-stimulation test in the diagnosis of adrenal insuciency and to define its optimal cut-o. Methods: We analyzed data from 103 patients undergoing 1 g ACTH-stimulation test. Four patients had adrenal insuciency (AI) upon follow up: Two primary, and two secondary AI. Cortisol serum levels were evaluated at time 0, 20’, and 30’ after the injection of 1 g i.v. of ACTH. The sensitivity, specificity, accuracy, and positive and negative predictive values of the test were calculated for both 20’ and 30’ sampling. The receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve was obtained to assess the sensitivity and specificity of low-dose ACTH-stimulation test in the diagnosis of adrenal insuciency at dierent cut-o values. Results: Considering 500 nmol/L as the standard cut-o value, low-dose ACTH stimulation test showed a 100% sensitivity and a 67.3% specificity, with a high rate of false positive results. ROC curve analysis showed that the cut-o of 401.5 nmol/L is the best compromise between sensitivity (100%) and specificity (93.9%). Conclusions: By using a cut-o value of 401.5 nmol/L for the low-dose ACTH stimulation test, the number of false positive patients decreased significantly, but the sensitivity remained high.

Accuracy of the Low-Dose ACTH Stimulation Test for Adrenal Insufficiency Diagnosis: A Re-Assessment of the Cut-Off Value

Laura Maria Mongioì;Rosita Angela Condorelli;Rossella Cannarella;Sandro La Vignera;Aldo Eugenio Calogero
2019

Abstract

Background: The clinical practice shows that many low-dose ACTH-stimulation tests have a false positive result. The aim of the study was to determine the diagnostic accuracy of a low-dose ACTH-stimulation test in the diagnosis of adrenal insuciency and to define its optimal cut-o. Methods: We analyzed data from 103 patients undergoing 1 g ACTH-stimulation test. Four patients had adrenal insuciency (AI) upon follow up: Two primary, and two secondary AI. Cortisol serum levels were evaluated at time 0, 20’, and 30’ after the injection of 1 g i.v. of ACTH. The sensitivity, specificity, accuracy, and positive and negative predictive values of the test were calculated for both 20’ and 30’ sampling. The receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve was obtained to assess the sensitivity and specificity of low-dose ACTH-stimulation test in the diagnosis of adrenal insuciency at dierent cut-o values. Results: Considering 500 nmol/L as the standard cut-o value, low-dose ACTH stimulation test showed a 100% sensitivity and a 67.3% specificity, with a high rate of false positive results. ROC curve analysis showed that the cut-o of 401.5 nmol/L is the best compromise between sensitivity (100%) and specificity (93.9%). Conclusions: By using a cut-o value of 401.5 nmol/L for the low-dose ACTH stimulation test, the number of false positive patients decreased significantly, but the sensitivity remained high.
adrenal insuciency; cortisol levels; low-dose ACTH test stimulation
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11769/373718
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