The nurse is caring for a 36-year-old female recently diagnosed with Addison’s disease. The nurse recognizes further teaching is needed if the client states

  • “I will need to limit my salt intake and use a salt substitute from now on.”
  • “I will have to take hormones for the rest of my life.”
  • “My husband is helping me pick out a medical alert bracelet to wear.”
  • “I have to watch for symptoms of adrenal failure.”
Number 1 is correct.
Addison’s disease is caused by the adrenal glands producing insufficient amounts of certain hormones. It requires lifelong medication therapy, and can lead to a life-threatening condition called Addisonian crisis. People with Addison’s disease should not use salt substitutes. Clients with Addison’s crave sodium in their diets and should be allowed salt. Salt substitutes are dangerous because they contain potassium; people with Addison’s disease should limit dietary potassium.