ACTH (adrenocorticotropic hormone) is a hormone produced by the pituitary gland, located below the brain. ACTH activates glands on the kidneys (adrenal glands) to make cortisol, a substance that helps the body deal with stress.
When cortisol levels in the blood rise, the ACTH levels in a healthy person normally fall in response. When cortisol levels decrease, ACTH levels normally rise.
|Primary Medical Reviewer||E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine|
|Specialist Medical Reviewer||Alan C. Dalkin, MD - Endocrinology|
|Current as of||May 17, 2012|
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise