Thursday, May 31, 2012

And Another One Bites the Dust

This is going to be one of those uncharacteristically whiny posts. My feelings will not be hurt if you bail now.

Still here? Okay. Well, last week, I went and met with the new endocrinologist. I can't really say I am any more impressed with this one than I was with the last one. Which goes to say: Not impressed at all.

I went in, prepared with all of my lab work from the last year and a half. The doctor looked it over, asked me about my symptoms (fatigue, extremely cold extremities, hair loss, heart palpitations, etc. Apparently, I have been tired for the past 7 years because I currently have a toddler... that made me want to kick him in the groin, by the way) and came up with this: do lab work, look at the results, have me switch medications (again), up the dosage, and try to get my TSH to just around 1.

Sounded like a plan, minus the change of medication. I told him I really feel better on my current thyroid medication (Armour dessicated thyroid) and would prefer to stay on it.

Apparently I was wrong on all counts.

So, after calling the office every day for a week, I finally got someone to tell me what was up (they were supposed to call me the morning after the appointment. Ha). The nurse called and said "your lab results show that everything is in the normal range and the doctor said you could just continue on your current medication."

I told her I was confused--I am currently taking 1 grain of Armour and my TSH is right over 2... How was it supposed to be pulled down to a 1 if we leave the medication where it currently is??? She asked me to hold on and when she came back, said something like "well, it's a different medication, so it's measured differently." While this is true, my primary care physician has shown my the conversion chart between the two medications, and I know that my current dosage is significantly lower than the 125 mcg of Synthroid he wanted me to switch to. I told her all of this to which she replied "well, you have a good day." Click.

I then climbed into the shower and sobbed while I washed my hair.

I guess I just don't understand. I come in and say "I don't feel well. Here is all of my lab work--the last blood draw was 2 months ago." The doctor says "Huh. You were tested for A, B, C, D, and E. I think I will test you for A, B, C, D, and E, too." And then, when the results for A, B, C, D, and E come back EXACTLY THE SAME, the doctor says "See? Everything is normal. You're fine. Get another blood draw in a year." Just like the last one did. ARGH!


Why will no one say "Oh, the last endocrinologist has concluded the problem is not your thyroid anymore based on tests A, B, C, D, and E. These symptoms are also a sign of X, Y, and/or Z. Let's do some tests to rule those out!"...?!?!?!?!

Or at least adjust my medication until I feel better. I know the Armour is doing something... I do feel better than I did, but I still don't feel good. It's like on a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being great, 1 being horrible) I have gone from a 2 to a 5.5. I just don't think I am all the way there, yet. I've been able to lose about 25 lbs (though, it's been extremely difficult and it seems to be stuck... I feel so close, yet so far away.... I'll probably be fat forever) since switching exclusively to Armour and I don't feel quite so depressed all the time. Otherwise, everything else is pretty much the same. Or only marginally better. But no one cares. Because if they did, they would have said "okay, you feel better on Armour, it's working, so far, albeit not perfectly. Let's increase your Armour and see if that helps" instead of "you can either take the Synthroid at a higher dose or you can go away."

It really makes me believe someone is getting kickbacks from the makers of Synthroid.

Not cool.

All right, I am going to go breaks things, now. And it really has me losing faith in the medical profession. Or at least the medical professionals in the greater JBLM area.

Guess this just adds to my growing list of reasons why I HATE Washington.


  1. Ugh, I know how you feel. We have crappy doctors here. I often get the "well, you have a lot on your plate" as to why I'm tired and feel like crap. Granted, i have the Lupus diagnosis but my blood work looks good so why the hell would it be because of the Lupus (another fall back).

    Keep pushing- maybe try to go someone outside of the area? Can you fly back and see one in Atlanta? I know this is ridiculous but I also know you need answers!

  2. I talked to the endocrinology department head on post this afternoon. He offered to let me come in and see him to see if he has a different perspective. So, I am going to do that when I get back from visiting my parents in June. I'm just frustrated--if my thyroid is under control, that's FINE! But I want to know what else is going on, in that case. I made an appointment with my primary care doctor to discuss... So, maybe we will get this figured out... someday.

    Unfortunately, I don't think Tricare will pay for me to see anyone in Atlanta--the military coverage is broken up between three regions, and I would have to switch my coverage to see someone in Atlanta, and then switch it back... Just not worth going through.