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Back to the Doctor - Answers but More Questions

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

I'm venting this morning so this may be long.

It's tough when doctors ignore you. Or they write you off as a hypochondriac, or just tell you that it's part of getting older when you know how you feel. You can't help it if your symptoms are diffuse or intermittent.

For some time now I've had intense pressure in my upper abdomen. I knew I had fibroid tumors in my uterus and felt like one had grown. I'm out of breath constantly, I feel pressure when I sit, and often I feel like I can't get my breath. Not shortness of breath, but inability to breathe. Not the "I've exercised too much and can't breathe" but the "I've eaten too much and there's no room and I can't breathe." Even when I haven't eaten. Over the past few months it's gotten worse and gone from intermittent to constant.

Last December I went to a gastroentologist. He ran some bloodwork but didn't see anything to warrant additional tests. He said probably it was a combination of irritable bowel (which according to him was a catch-all diagnosis when they couldn't find anything else) and monthly hormonal changes. So I lived with it. I had convinced myself it was the fibroids growing.

So I had my OB/GYN annual check-up and I told her I wanted to know the size of my uterus. Since she knew about the fibroids, she referred me to a surgeon for an evaluation. So that took a while to schedule.

The surgeon agreed I needed another ultrasound scan to follow up on the one from two years ago when they found the fibroids. That took a while to schedule. At the same time she anted to do an endometrial biopsy. I refused (because of the pain involved) , saying all I wanted to know was the size of my uterus. I broke down in her office crying. I told her I didn't care about the erratic bleeding. If my uterus was the size of a cantaloupe (which is the pressure I was feeling) I wanted it out. I'd already had my tubes tied years ago, and I'm 44. Preserving fertility isn't an issue.

She thought she could feel something in my lower stomach, so she finally heard me and suggested an abdominal CT scan. I had that last week, but the surgeon was out of town for a week so I was left in limbo. I called her office and was told by my original doctor that the scan looked normal other than the fibroids. So I was waiting until my follow-up appointment with the surgeon on Nov 19th when her office called me yesterday and said the ct scan indicated fatty liver, and I needed to see a gastroentologist. They would make a referral (not the one I saw in December).

Great. Just great. I guess I will go talk to this new doctor to see if that is causing my symptoms, but most of what I"m reading says that fatty liver is asymptomatic and one symptom is weight loss. Yeah, right. I've gained five pounds this fall, mainly because I've felt so horrible.

So the few websites I perused said there is no cure but it can be reversed with weight loss. Lovely. Like that's so easy. I've hit the mid-forties wall. I'm hoping that the doctor can suggest medication that might make me feel better and then I can get back on a fitness regimen. It's hard to work up enthusiasm about cardio when you can't get your breath sitting down.

I was in tears off and on yesterday. I'm just so frustrated. Maybe I could have caught this sooner with regular preventive blood tests. But my insurance doesn't cover that and we've been struggling financially, so I kept putting it off. Besides, the other gastro doctor's blood tests in December didn't show much.

Thank you for listening to me rant. After a rough day yesterday, I'm hoping i can keep a lid on my emotions today. Pray that I can find a path through this.

(It was long. Sorry. )
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I am sorry about the diagnosis, but the good news is that you have a diagnosis. You are a really strong woman and you can succeed at weight loss and a healthier you. Just start each day like the beginning. Your strength motivates me!! emoticon
    1924 days ago
  • JESSIKA_56
    Sorry to hear about all of you tough times with the doctors lately. I hope they will be able to find something to help you!
    1925 days ago
    emoticon I hope they can figure out what is wrong soon.
    1925 days ago
    That is a horrible thing to go through. I guess in New Zealand where I live, we are more fortunate with healthcare. Our doctor's visits are between $5 - $38 but any referral to a specialist and scans are paid for by our government.

    I wanted to mention something. I am on a low carb diet because of diabetes and want to lose weight. I did well on it in terms of tight glucose control, reduced/stopped some of my meds & weight loss (12kg weight loss in 5 weeks) but under ate so got vertigo & had to take a break from exercise (and I was silly and ate junk food while I wasnt exercising, and put 8 kgs back on). I had symptoms similar to yours before going low carb, but was just given gastrosoothe to ease the upper ab pain (which never worked). Low carbing is what got rid of it. I know there are lots of benefits from going low carb but I wasn't familiar with fatty liver, so I did a quick google search with the keywords low carb and fatty liver to see if low carbing helps with that condition, & came across this article:
    94531-fatty-liver-low-carb/ I thought I'd just link it here so you could read it & decide for yourself if you wanted to give low carb a go.

    Im really sorry to hear how things are going for you at the moment. Hopefully things will move along faster now so they can find a treatment for your pain. P.S: Dont worry about the long blog. I enjoy reading :) I'll be praying for you.

    1925 days ago

    Comment edited on: 11/14/2012 9:18:47 AM
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