But… Doc… It all fits!

There is only one thing worse than not feeling 100% – and that’s feeling bad and having no-one believe there’s anything wrong with you.

For years my Mother has bugged me to get my thyroid levels checked. Litterally, almost two decades of nagging. I always refused because I thought she was looking for an excuse for my weight; I knew nothing about the thyroid, just that a cousin of hers lots “heaps of weight!” when her hypothyroidism was diagnosed and treated. And a plea like that is a red flag to the chronically overweight – it felt like Mummy guilt and I didn’t want to go there.

So I never took it any further.

Until last week, when some other issues (of a menstrual nature) cropped up *again*, with no discernable cause. That, coupled with an incredibly large weight gain (from loose clothes to tight in 5 days, despite no change in diet or exercise) and a very sore and swollen throat, drove me to the GP’s. I saw a locum – my usual Doc being away on Fridays – and she sent me for a raft of blood tests, including thyroid tests. And she suggested that I go home and google ‘hypothyroidism’.

So I did. And I got a hell of a shock.

Out of a looong list of symptoms I have all but one (the only one I don’t have is thinning hair). And I’ve had them for as long as I can remember, although most have gotten worse in the last few years. I even looked at the complications that hypothyroidism can have in pregnancy (it can cause pre-eclampsia and heavy post-labour bleeding) and yes, I had those too. Further reading led me to believe I may even have Hashimoto’s disease. I thought I was on the right track. It felt good; perhaps I had finally found what was wrong with me! Now I could treat it and get better!

Yeah. Not so fast.

I hadn’t heard back from the Doctor’s Surgery so I called them, asking for my test results. And according to the nurse everything is normal.

SAY WHAT? NORMAL??

She is going to get the Doctor to call back and confirm with me (I asked for a copy of the results but they won’t do that until after he has spoken with me – I’m not sure why) but I don’t know what to do from here. I am fairly sure I have the answer, but the numbers say no. Or, I’m being told they say no.

And the worst part is I don’t feel as though anyone particularly cares about finding out what is causing all these problems. The official ‘word’ is “Ok, so you’re no longer bleeding/blowing up like a blimp/etc, so there’s obviously nothing wrong!” Which is fine, until next day/week/month when it all begins again…

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2 Responses

  1. My hypothyroidism went undiagnosed for quite some time and when I finally figured out what was wrong, it took another year and a half to get someone to listen to me and not dismiss my suspicions. And THEN, it was a struggle. My doctor insisted my weight gain was due to obstructive sleep apnea. Well, I do have apnea, but the other symptoms didn’t fit with sleep apnea.
    Thinking back to 2003 and I was fit and thin, but smoked. I also had periods very frequently, and they were heavy – even containing large clots. I also had pain in my breasts and two suspicious areas showed up in the next mammogram. So, in early 2005, I had a biopsy/lumpectomy of my breast and a complete hysterectomy because everything had gone whack – ovaries were diseased and cystic and I was diagnosed with adenomyosis-not good. HRT kept me feeling okay for about a year and a half and in the fall of October 2006, I noticed a rapid weight gain. I cut down on calories, started walking more and no loss of pounds. So I cut back more and no good. After studying, researching, googling I decided that my thyroid was very out of whack. The next doctor visit, I asked to be tested. She insisted my weight gain was because of sleep apnea or my breathing difficulties (I had been diagnosed with COPD in Feb. 2007).
    After asking at least twice, I gave up until late June of 2008 and asked my OB/GYN’s physician assistant if she would order lab work to check thyroid function.She agreed and when the results came back, I was relieved, angry, bummed all at the same time. My TSH level was 103.3!! My weight went from 145# to 232# between October 2006 and July 2008. I didn’t stop gaining weight until I reached 245# and my Synthroid was increased to 125mcg.
    There are days I get so discouraged and feel so hopeless. My COPD prevents me from exercising like I did before. And well-meaning family and friends who don’t understand hypothyroidism and COPD tell me to “get out and exercise.” There is nothing I would like better than to be able to walk four miles again or vacuum my carpets.
    I sympathize with you and knowing what I know now, I regret not being more insistent and/or finding a doctor who would listen. Get your test numbers. Just because they are ‘within range’ doesn’t mean that they are ‘ok.’ Anything above 3.5 is considered hypo, according to the Endocrinology Foundation. So, hang in there and don’t give up because someone tells you you are okay. It is your body, not theirs. If they won’t listen, find a specialist. In the meantime, read all you can and arm yourself with knowledge.
    I wish you the best and send hugs. Hang in there!

    • Thanks – it’s nice to hear others have the same problems I do, in regards to GP’s and the medical profession. In this case though I did get a copy of my results and they do seem normal, so… I dunno. Things are going wrong with my red blood cells, but that shouldn’t cause all this 🙂

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