What is adrenaline, what does it do, what are the symptoms of deficiency?

Adrenaline, often called the “Fight or flight” hormone, is a potent chemical produced by the adrenal glands in response to stress or danger. It rapidly increases heart rate, boosts energy, and sharpens focus, preparing the body for immediate action. Beyond its role in survival, adrenaline is central to extreme sports and thrilling experiences, offering a rush of excitement and heightened awareness. However, chronic exposure to high adrenaline levels can have detrimental health effects, underscoring the importance of managing stress in our modern lives.

APA 7: ChatGPT. (2023, September 8). What is adrenaline, what does it do, what are the symptoms of deficiency? PerEXP Teamworks. [Article Link]

What is adrenaline?

Adrenaline, also known as epinephrine, is a hormone and neurotransmitter produced by the adrenal glands, which sit atop each kidney. It is often referred to as the “Fight or flight” hormone due to its role in preparing the body for rapid response to stress or danger.

Structure of epinephrine (Also known as adrenaline)

What does adrenaline do?

Adrenaline has several important functions in the body:

  1. Stress response: When the body perceives a threat or stressor, adrenaline is released into the bloodstream. This triggers a surge in heart rate, elevates blood pressure, and boosts energy levels, preparing the body to react quickly.
  2. Increased alertness: Adrenaline enhances mental alertness and sharpens focus, helping individuals think and react more swiftly in stressful situations.
  3. Dilation of airways: It relaxes the muscles in the airways, allowing for increased airflow. This is essential for improved oxygen supply during physical exertion or when facing danger.
  4. Energy release: Adrenaline stimulates the release of stored energy in the form of glucose and fatty acids, providing an immediate energy boost.
  5. Vasoconstriction: It constricts blood vessels in non-essential areas (like the skin and digestive system) and redirects blood flow to vital organs and muscles, optimizing physical performance.
  6. Pain suppression: Adrenaline can temporarily dampen the perception of pain, allowing individuals to push through injuries in emergency situations.

Symptoms of adrenaline deficiency

Adrenaline deficiency is quite rare, but when it occurs, it can lead to various symptoms, including:

  1. Chronic fatigue: A lack of adrenaline can result in persistent fatigue and low energy levels, as the body may struggle to respond effectively to stressors.
  2. Dizziness and low blood pressure: Insufficient adrenaline can lead to low blood pressure, causing dizziness, fainting, or lightheadedness.
  3. Difficulty coping with stress: Individuals with adrenaline deficiency may find it challenging to manage stress and may experience an exaggerated stress response.
  4. Decreased alertness: A deficiency in adrenaline may lead to difficulties in concentration and staying alert, especially in high-pressure situations.

It’s important to note that adrenaline deficiency is a medical condition that usually requires diagnosis and treatment by healthcare professionals. Most individuals naturally produce adequate levels of adrenaline to handle stress and emergency situations effectively.


  1. NEWSPAPER Medical News Today. (n.d.). Endorphin release differs by exercise intensity, study finds. Medical News Today. [Medical News Today]
  2. WEBSITE Nall, R. (2018, February 15). What’s the difference between epinephrine and norepinephrine? Healthline. [Healthline]
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