What is Plechner’s Syndrome?

Posted on October 16th, 2014

Plechner’s Syndrome is one of the three most important syndromes effecting the adrenal cortex, the other two being Cushing’s Syndrome and Addison’s Syndrome.

Plechner’s Syndrome, which I refer to as the Atypical Cortisol Estrogen Imbalance Syndrome (ACEIS), is better known to the public as Plechner’s Syndrome. It identifies the CAUSE of disease and not merely the EFFECTS of disease.

Plechner’s Syndrome refers to the production of a deficient or defective amount of cortisol that is inactive.

This cortisol imbalance originates from the middle layer adrenal cortex referred to as the zona fasciculata.

When this cortisol imbalance occurs, the relationship between the hypothalamic-pituitary (HPA) axis and the middle layer adrenal cortex, is damaged.

In humans and canines, the daily production of active cortisol produced by the zona fasciculata, completes its hormone functions in the body, including the regulation of the immune system. Upon its completion of its function, the cortisol is broken down by the liver and excreted by the kidneys. The reduced amounts of cortisol work in a negative feedback mechanism with HPA axis.

This means that as the active cortisol levels decline, the hypothalamus releases its hormone which in turn, will cause the pituitary gland to release its hormone referred to as ACTH (Adrenal Corticotrophic Hormone).

The release of the ACTH stimulates the release of more active cortisol from the zona fasciculata which funds the negative feedback mechanism to the hypothalamus-pituitary axis.

With Plechner’s Syndrome, the production of proper amounts of active cortisol will not occur.

Unfortunately at this time, the production of cortisol, in any amount whether large or small, does not identify the fact that the cortisol is active or inactive. To identify this fact, other comparative endocrine immune blood levels must be determined which can be done with Plechner’s Syndrome blood test. NOTE: This will be discussed in great detail in this article later.

When Plechner’s Syndrome identifies a deficient or defective amount of inactive cortisol that is being produced, the negative feedback mechanism to the hypothalamic-pituitary axis cannot be funded correctly, which results in an excess production of pituitary ACTH.

Since the deficient or defective, inactive cortisol cannot fulfill its responsibility to this negative feedback mechanism to the hypothalamus-pituitary axis, the inner layer adrenal cortex, referred to as the zona reticularis, will respond to the excess ACTH in a direct feedback mechanism. When this occurs, the inner layer adrenal cortex will produce excess amounts of adrenal estrogen and androgen. NOTE: This part of Plechner’s Syndrome will only discuss the damage that the excess amounts of estrogen will cause.

Unfortunately, the excess estrogen is rarely included in the overall measurements of total estrogen by the medical profession.

The medical literature indicates the concern about estrogen and the inflammation it may cause, and yet the medical profession rarely measures total estrogen, which does include the zona reticularis estrogen.

In human males and in male and female canines, only estradiol is measured.

In human females only the three ovarian estrogens are measured, which include estradiol, estriole and estron. To determine the different amounts of ovarian and adrenal estrogen that are being produced, the total estrogen levels can be measured early in the menstrual cycle when the ovarian estrogen is at its lowest level and measured once again at the time of menstrual cycle, when the ovarian estrogen is at its highest level. A comparison of these various levels may indicate the difference in the amounts that are being produced by the ovaries and by the adrenal zona reticularis.

Please realize, if you as a human female, are postmenopausal and your estradiol levels are deficient, please do not accept taking an estrogen supplement until your total estrogen has been tested. If you’re adrenal estrogen dominant, and you take an estrogen supplement, it can cause you to have allergies, autoimmunity and cancer! Please be careful.

My clinical studies using Plechner’s Syndrome with affected canines, felines and equines, has all been done almost entirely with females that have had their ovaries removed and on males that have no ovaries. Every one of these animals had either a deficient or a defective, inactive cortisol, which was being produced by their zona reticularis with excessive amounts of zona reticularis estrogen.

Between Miles Laboratory, A and E Laboratory and National Diagnostic Laboratory, over 100,000 Plechner Syndrome tests have been performed.

This test was done on canines, felines, equines and people, with allergies, autoimmunities and cancer.

Going to the CAUSE of these diseases, while still treating their EFFECTS, made a huge difference for all these patients.

Plechner’s syndrome further suggests that the excess total estrogen may do the following:

  • Elevated total estrogen causes an inflammation of the endothelial cells that line all the arteries in the body. This inflammation, caused by the elevated amount of total estrogen can cause migraine headaches and epileptic seizures. It might also be involved in the cerebral inflammation that occurs with Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Elevated total estrogen deregulates the cells in the immune system. The B and T lymphocytes no longer function to protect the body. When the T lymphocyte is deregulated by the elevated total estrogen, the body loses its protection against viruses like Feline leukemia and other retroviruses, HIV and possibly the viral hepatitis’s. Also the T lymphocytes suppressed functions against fungi, etc., can lead to chronic candidiasis and other fungal and mold infestations. The suppressed B-lymphocyte will not protect against bacterial infections when the total estrogen is elevated and also will not respond favorably, antibody wise, to vaccinations.
  • Elevated total estrogen will also cause the immune system to lose recognition of self-tissue, and can create a state of autoimmunity. NOTE: Total estrogen needs to be tested for all autoimmune diseases in humans and in animals.
  • Elevated total estrogen can bind the receptor sites for the thyroid hormones, triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxin (T4). In humans, the elevated total estrogen may cause the creation of a Reverse T3, which binds these sites and if a T4 supplement is prescribed, the Reverse T3 will turn that T4 supplement into more Reverse T3 and will make the thyroid imbalance even worse.
  • Elevated total estrogen will cause the B-lymphocyte to reduce its production of protective antibodies and once the mucous membrane antibody, referred to as immunoglobulin A, is below a certain level, many oral medications and supplements will not be absorbed through the gut wall, especially an active cortisol replacement.
  • It is recognized that when estrogen is introduced into normal tissue, the tissue will grow at an abnormally high rate. Any and all cancer patients that I have been involved with, whether human or animal, all had elevated levels of total estrogen!

Plechner’s Syndrome is much more common than realized or ever considered.

For further information on the actual blood test for Plechner’s Syndrome for humans and animals, please view this page.

For further information on Plechner’s Syndrome, please do an internet search for Atypical Cortisol Estrogen Imbalance Syndrome (ACEIS).

Hopefully you and your pet will never suffer from Plechner’s Syndrome, but if either one of you has allergies, autoimmunities or cancer, please insist your MD or DVM at least do a Total Estrogen test.

If your health care professionals are interested in contacting me, they can click on Contact Dr. Plechner.

These are only my thoughts and I hope they will keep you and your pet healthier, happier and living a longer life.


Dr. AL Plechner