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Old 06-18-2005, 11:13 AM   #1
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Smile Help with questions for my doc appt.

Hello Everyone!

Two years ago, I began experiencing swelling in my face, hands, & feet, hives, allergies, and some fatigue. I am a mom of twin boys, so at the time I attributed the fatigue to that. I suspected either hypothyroidism or RA.
I went to my doc, had a blood test, and was given meds for allergies. I never really thought that was it, but trusted my doc. I had also been checking my temp. in the morning upon rising and it was normal.

Fast forward to now. I still experience swelling in my face, hands, & feet, and hives upon waking. The allergies are still there (food, some cosmetics, animals, etc.) And the fatigue is worse. In addition I often feel slightly off balance (vertigo?). Feel much worse when I wake up in the morning, than when I went to bed, my temp. upon waking averages 97.4 and often doesn't hit 98.6 until early afternoon and then drops pretty quickly after 7 pm.
I've gained an explained 30 lbs. in 1 year. A couple hours after walking only 1/2 mile on my treadmill my legs are killing me. I'm very stiff and sore, and my muscles don't seem to recover from it for 2 days! I have the "dropsies" in the morning. I've had hair loss for a few years, but attributed it to heredity, then realized that the grandmother who also dealt with hairloss and wore a wig most of her life had her thyroid reomved! Hhhhmmmm. I sometimes feel my heart pounding in my chest, usually in the morning after walking upstairs.
And my eyelids are puffy and one droops a little (in my opinion).

Here's my family history:
Father has MS.
His mother, my grandmother had her thyroid removed.
Grandfather on mother's side of family had severe RA.
A cousin with Lupus.
And no diabetes on either side of family.

I recently pulled out my bloodwork that was done two years ago. My doc did have a test run for my TSH. At that time it was 2.5
Now my symptoms are much worse.

I have an appointment with my doc this week and will be taking a list of my symptoms to him.

Are there questions that I should be asking?
Given my symptoms, does this look like a thyroid issue or perhaps something else?
Are there certain tests that I should request?

Thanks so much! I have learned a lot in the past few weeks from this board.
It has been a great encouragement for me.

 
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Old 06-18-2005, 04:25 PM   #2
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Re: Help with questions for my doc appt.

You need more than a TSH test to diagnose hypoT, although your one reading of 2.5 a couple of years ago suggests a problem. The American Assn of Clinical Endo's suggests that a TSH above 3.0 merits a trial of thyroid hormone. You can read about it at the following webpages. Your new doctor may not be aware of the information, so you may want to take a printout with you.
http://www.aace.com/pub/tam2003/press.php
http://www.aace.com/pub/tam2003/explanation.php

The best tests to detect thyroid disease are TSH, free (not total nor 'indexed') T4, free T3, and the thyroid antibodies - TPO and Tg.

For what it's worth, yes - I think you do have thyroid issues, based on your symptoms and family history. Even though your relatives didn't have all the same disease, they had autoimmune diseases... which predisposes you to autoimmune disease of any type. Looks like your version may be AI thyroid disease.

If you want to, you can post your test results here when you get them. Be sure to include the lab ranges. Even if the MD dismisses your symptoms as non-thyroid and says your tests are "normal"... you may still have a thyroid issue. Doctors, even endos, are notoriously bad at diagnosing this condition.
So let us know, either way.
Good luck!

 
Old 06-18-2005, 04:33 PM   #3
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Re: Help with questions for my doc appt.

Hello and welcome, Yes your symptoms sound like you might be hypo.

I just want to warn you that if your doctor just checks the TSH and says that it is in normal range, that is very wrong. Your symptoms are what the doc must be looking at okay. Make sure the doc finds out what is causing you to not feel good. If you have the money and the doc doesn't think it is your thyroid, just let him or her do all the testing to rule out anything else that is causing your symptoms.

Sometimes hypothyroidism can be a bit confusing to diagnose, since there are other diseases that have similiar symptoms.

The tests that need to be run are TSH, Freet4 and Freet3. There are also antibody tests, but I don't know the name of those sorry.

Have you read the Sticky Archive at the top of the boards? There is a list of symptoms of hypothyroidism. If you have found it, just disregard this sentence. I wish you good luck with your doctors appointment.

 
Old 06-18-2005, 05:48 PM   #4
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Wink Re: Help with questions for my doc appt.

as a health care provider I feel you should also have non-thyroid tests run (espec if you have insurance!) what I mean by this is to look for other autoimmune disease as well as a CBC with diff to check for allergies you can have a regular thyroid profile (all thyroid tests except the antibodies) CBC with diff, ANA, RF, and CRP with the diagnosis of fatigue and swelling. It would be great if you could also have the antibodies done...but be careful with some insurance companies as this is not covered if you don't have thyroid tests out of what the lab calls "normal range" (not what endos consider normal) or if you have it done just be aware of the cost. All of your symptoms are common with autoimmune diseases in general...except for the low temp (that is more suggestive of hypot). Another thing to with a elevated TSH also I would consider getting a Lipid panel as Hypot can effect the lipid panel...subclinical hypothyroidism is indicated to treat (even without symptoms) if your cholesterol is high. GOOD LUCK!

 
Old 06-19-2005, 01:40 PM   #5
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Re: Help with questions for my doc appt.

Thanks to everyone for the responses!
I'll post an update as soon as the results from my bloodwork are in.

 
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