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A first time mum at 39, trying not to let my son kill me off too soon. Busy juggling a new family, a new house and a tricky recording schedule I figured blogging would be less expensive than therapy and less embarrassing than shouting at rude and stupid people in the street/on trains/at the supermarket.

Monday, 1 September 2014

Just what the doctor ordered.

Apparently I have an overactive thyroid.

When my doctor told me on Friday, I almost laughed it off, thinking how unfair it was that one of the symptoms is meant to be excessive weight loss. HA! Fat chance of that (if you'll pardon the pun) as this condition increases your metabolism. 

He didn't make it sound terribly serious and told me that he would refer me to an endocrinologist (without actually telling me what that was) and they would sort me out with some drugs.  I pushed a little further to see what the implications were - I was worried this would cause me to put on the weight I had fought so hard to lose this last month.  All he could reply was that I needed to lose weight as my BMI was too high (tell me something I don't know) and it's all about calories.  Really?  Gosh, I hadn't noticed.  Perhaps you would care to ask me about my diet and exercise?  No?  Okay doc, I get the point, I must just eat too many cakes and sit on the sofa all day... 

Realising i was going to have find out for myself I went home to do exactly that.  

Wow.  Not that serious?  So now I'm more stressed that I've ever been (and apparently that is also a symptom).  Let's look at the list shall we...

* Feeling nervous, irritable or hyperactive
Ask my husband.  I think he will confirm at least 2 out of those 3. The dentist has confirmed that I have been grinding my teeth in my sleep for years - I am wearing them down and I have jaw, ear and headache a lot. 

* Sweating more than usual & unable to cope with heat.
So, something I have complained to my doctor about for years, even resulting in taking tablets for hyperhidrosis and having underarm botox injections. Unnecessary perhaps?
Does that explain why I can't even run for 10 seconds for a train without looking like someone has chucked water over my face?

* tremors/shaking
After short bursts of exercise, the hands go.

* Muscle weakness.  
Oh so you mean falling over all the time isn't normal?  Rolling my ankles on an almost daily basis to the point I sprained them so badly a few months ago that I couldn't walk for 2 days and there is still some swelling and my chances of going running again are pretty much shot - that's just one of those things is it?

* Palpitations and increased heart rate
The fact my heart rate goes off the scale during a run isn't just down to me being unfit (even though I did this 3 times a week for years)  considering my resting heart rate has always been really low. And the palpitations that I asked the doctor about 4 years ago... not in my imagination then?   Oh and the low blood-pressure ? Yep that's a symptom too. 

* thinning or loss of hair, more susceptible to greying.
It comes out in handfuls at every brush and my hair dye receipts are racking up.

* having more frequent bowel movements/diarrhoea 
So not IBS then as diagnosed?  Excellent. 

* excessive weight loss and increased appetite.
erm.  Nope.  Seemed to have dodged that one - the only one I could have coped with.

* reduced fertility and complications in pregnancy.
The reason the tests were done in the first place... Probably the reason I lost 2 pregnancies during the first year of trying and now, since Boychild was born, the reason I'm struggling again with the likelihood of at least one loss around Christmas last year.   It's a miracle we managed to have a child at all. 

These are all 'minor' things  when you look at them, however the more you read the worse it gets.  Without treatment, this can cause blood clots, stroke, heart attack, problems with your vision including sensitivity to light and blurring (yep, had all that too).

I know that self-diagnosis is a dangerous and scary thing, but when your doctor doesn't talk to you then you have little choice.  At least now I am armed for when my referral comes through.   Particularly given we are still trying for another baby.  The drugs are required to help but aren't conducive necessarily to being pregnant.   Brilliant.

Don't misunderstand me, I know that one or two of the things I have experienced over the last 10 years could well have coincidental and nothing to do with my thyroid and given that the most obvious symptom (weight loss) I don't seem to have suffered from then it's easy to see how this was overlooked.  But if you look at everything together isn't it obvious?

Anyway, it's all something else for me to worry about.  Brilliant.  Just what the doctor ordered. 

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