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Old 08-31-2007, 08:42 AM   #1
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Newbie: Nervous for next appt, feeling so tired

Hi. I was diagnosed with anemia exactly a year ago. My PCP had lots of tests to determine the cause: upper & lower GI series, CT scan, occult blood. All those came back fine. He then concluded my anemia was from heavy periods so I had an endometrial ablation. That was 5 months ago and my iron levels have continued to drop.

So, I am scheduled to see a hematologist on Thursday. I know this is a logical next step but it bothering me a bit because he is in a cancer center. I know it doesn't mean anything...but it is kind of psyching me out, know what I mean?

In the mean time, my symptoms are getting worse almost daily. I am so tired...I could sleep for 12+ hours and still wake up exhausted. My heart races when I walk up the 21 steps from my laundry room to my bedroom. And my PCP took me off Zantac so my stomach hurts and I can't sleep because of the reflux. I feel like I'm just barely surviving.

What should I expect from the hematologist appointment? More tests? Or will he try some treatments immediately? I am tired of being tired so I wish he'd just look at my chart and give me the magical answer that corrects everything.
Thanks,
Jo

 
Old 08-31-2007, 11:51 AM   #2
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Re: Newbie: Nervous for next appt, feeling so tired

Jo--I'm sorry that you are feeling so bad. It's good that you've have the necessary testing done. I had all these as well. Seeing a Hematologist is really NO BIG DEAL, but it is reassuring that they know what to look for. Yes, I sit with people that have CA at the blood lab, were all there doing STAT bloods then we meet up at the Doc's office for our apt's. I'm always the only one with "just" anemia and I actually feel guilty being there. Especially when I'm complaining to my doc that my hair is falling out and his pt's don't have much to speak of, if any. My doc has no sympathy for me at all. These doctors usually ARE Hematology/Oncology.

You don't give your numbers or the amount of iron supplements you have been on so I can't speak to that. It does sound like your PCP thinks that you are having an absorption problem. There are tests for this too. That is why he took you off the PPI's. However, if this is hurting you as you say, maybe this is not a good idea for you to be off of them. I would call my PCP since you are seeing a Hematologist on Thurs. Personally, I would not go through this pain. You are sick enough already. Your other symptoms are what we go through on the road to recovery. I also felt like you for a long time.

You can expect your Hematologist to run his own labs. They usually determine if it is an absorption issue or if you can take oral iron. Next, if your numbers are very low in Iron and Ferritin then your doctor will probably check that your insurance covers IV Iron and put you on the schedule to have this therapy. Or even offer Iron shots depends on the doctor and your lab numbers. Everyone is in a different situation. Really it is an easy apt. and your doctor will be able to get you what you need to feel better. I felt safer with this type of doctor because he watches me close, calls me at home and I can e-mail him if necessary. He actually returns my calls within the hour personally. Know that your doc will fix your problem for you, probably with iron. Feel better and keeps us posted. FLFLOWERGIRL

Last edited by FLFLOWERGIRL; 08-31-2007 at 11:53 AM.

 
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Old 09-04-2007, 08:50 AM   #3
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Re: Newbie: Nervous for next appt, feeling so tired

FLFLOWERGIRL,
Thanks for your reply and your insights. It is nice to get more info on this process.

I don't know my numbers. My PCP just said I was 'extremely low'. After reading here, I have learned to ask for my iron levels.

I am now less nervous for my appointment on Thursday and ready to get some answers and a course of treatment.

Thanks again,
Jo

 
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