Metyrapone is a drug used in the diagnosis of adrenal insufficiency and occasionally in the treatment of Cushing's syndrome (hypercortisolism). Metyrapone blocks cortisol synthesis by reversibly inhibiting steroid 11β-hydroxylase. This stimulates ACTH secretion, which in turn increases plasma 11-deoxycortisol levels.

Whatever the cause, the clinical consequences of the Cushing’s syndrome are generally severe: glucose tolerance impairment or diabetes, hypertension, dyslipidemia, clotting disorders, vascular fragility, muscular weakness and osteoporosis, diminished resistance to infection, depression and psychiatric disorders, healing defects, gonadal dysfunction with hirsutism, acne. These multiple complications result in significant morbidity and impaired quality of life. Moreover inadequately controlled Cushing’s syndrome is a life-threatening condition, mostly as a result of increased cardiovascular risk.

Metyrapone is an inhibitor of the 11ß-hydroxylase enzyme in the adrenals and thereby blocks cortisol and aldosterone synthesis. More information is available at:

Metyrapone SMPC


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