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Korlym Uses

Korlym may be an effective treatment for adults who have endogenous Cushing's syndrome. This prescription drug is specifically designed for people who have this syndrome in addition to type 2 diabetes or glucose intolerance from high cortisol levels. Korlym is also used when surgery has failed or is not an option. This drug works by reducing blood sugar levels.

What Is Korlym Used For?

Korlym™ (mifepristone) is a prescription medication approved to control high blood sugar, known as hyperglycemia, in people with endogenous Cushing's syndrome. It is approved for use in people who:
  • Have type 2 diabetes or glucose intolerance from high cortisol levels (hypercortisolemia)
  • Cannot have surgery or had surgery but did not respond.
Cushing's syndrome is a disorder that occurs when the body is exposed to high levels of cortisol, a hormone made by the adrenal glands in response to stress. Cortisol regulates the effects of insulin in breaking down sugar for energy and increases blood sugar levels.
One of the more common causes of Cushing's syndrome is the long-term use of corticosteroids, such as prednisone. However, the condition can also occur when a problem within the body causes it to make too much cortisol. This is known as endogenous Cushing's syndrome. Some of the conditions that may cause an overproduction of cortisol include:
  • A pituitary or adrenal tumor
  • Ectopic ACTH syndrome
  • Familial Cushing's syndrome.
(Click Cushing's Syndrome Causes to read more about possible causes of Cushing's syndrome.)
The classic symptoms are caused by high cortisol levels in the body for a long period of time. These symptoms may include but are not limited to:
  • Weight gain, especially around the midsection and upper back
  • Excessive, thick hair growth, especially in women
  • Purplish-pink stretch marks on the abdomen (stomach), thighs, arms, and breasts
  • Acne
  • Skin problems
  • Menstrual disorders in women
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Bone loss and osteoporosis.
Treatment for Cushing's syndrome depends on the specific cause of the excess cortisol production. Surgery is often used when tumors are involved. However, surgery is not always successful. Also, some people may not be suitable candidates for surgery. Korlym is approved for use in people who failed surgery or cannot have surgery.
This medication should not be used to control hyperglycemia in people who have type 2 diabetes that is unrelated to Cushing's syndrome.
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Korlym Drug Information

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