Eleven of 32 newly diagnosed untreated patients with hyperthyroidism met
DSM-III criteria for organic affective syndrome. Thirty of these patients
submitted 24-hour urine specimens for measurement of urinary free cortisol
levels, and 31 were given a 1-mg dexamethasone suppression test (DST)
before antihyperthyroidism therapy was started. There was no difference in
the mean +/- SD urinary free cortisol excretion levels between depressed
and nondepressed hyperthyroid patients. One nondepressed patient
demonstrated nonsuppression (greater than 5 micrograms/dl) at 8:00 a.m.
These results suggest that cortisol abnormalities as reflected by urinary
free cortisol levels and DST findings are uncommon in patients with
hyperthyroidism whether they are depressed or nondepressed.