Saturday, June 20, 2020
Yesterday, I did a tele med appointment with a new endocrinologist. I did a lot of research on endocrinologists before I chose her. If I made a good choice, remains to be seen. This doctor appeared to be very thorough. Her nurse took about 20 minutes and wrote down as much of my medical history as possible. (I had it written down in advance because my brain has been shutting down at 2pm daily, like clockwork.) Initially, the doctor thought I sounded like I knew what I was talking about, until I held up my cheat sheet. Of course by 2:20pm I started my stammering and searching for words and forgetting what I was saying. My guess is that once I started the memory thing, she kind of understood the head injury. Maybe, maybe not.
The first thing the doctor did was take me off the Cytomel (T-3) thyroid drug. I was pleased about this because my primary and I had argued extensively about the pros and cons of this drug for people over 65 years of age. Both the endocrinologist and I had read the FDA warning that came out last year saying it isn't a good match for people over 65. Reasons - it can soften bones and lead to osteoporosis, it can raise blood sugar (for diabetics and prediabetics), it isn't a good match for those with heart or circulatory issues and it can cause complications for people with pituitary diseases/issues. There are other reasons too but I've included the reasons that I felt were the most glaring. My primary had told me last year that he had read the article too and felt that I had taken such a baby dose of the drug, that he could manage it without a problem. I think he was wrong.
Next the endocrinologist and I discussed the 2 brain MRIs that showed that I have a compressed or partially compressed pituitary. Eventually, if and when COVID-19 dies down a little, the doctor would like to see the discs with my 2 MRIs. Right now, I will have to just fax her the radiology reports. She needs to see the condition of the pituitary to be able to treat my complete hormone system effectively. The pituitary and the thyroid control the hormones in the body so we need to correct anything that is out of balance.
I asked the doctor if I could have Hashimoto's disease (autoimmune disease of the thyroid). She will do a complete panel in mid July to find out for sure (as well as testing other blood levels) but she said that my history indicates that I do have it. (This is especially true because my mom had a string of autoimmune diseases.). She would be more surprised if the test would indicate that I don't have Hashimoto's. Either way, it is valuable to know because having one autoimmune disease can make you more vulnerable to having other autoimmune diseases.
The doctor will do a sonogram of my thyroid to check my nodules and the overall size of my thyroid. If the nodules have gotten larger, depending on how big, she can do a needle biopsy. If the nodules, especially the solid one, have decreased in size it would be an unexpected blessing for me!
I have quite a few tests that will need be done in mid July. I also need to send the endocrinologist quite a bit of information. I think I will be scheduled for a follow-up tele med appointment at the end of July. I'm hoping that this doctor can help me but after the last group of doctors (who couldn't agree on anything) I'm being cautious. So....we will see how things pan out by the end of July. Getting some answers would end 2 decades of wondering why my body is so out of sinc.