Hey everyone! This is my first post. I can't seem to post correctly, so I'm giving it another try
. I've been lurking and learning as quickly as possible the last few months, and I'm already grateful for the insight I've gained from this board. I've been struggling for a while with specific symptoms, and all of my research keeps pointing to hypothyroidism, possibly Hashi's. I'd love any insight you may have on the subject! I just turned 35 and I'm a woman.
I just reread this all, and it is ridiculously extensive!! Please forgive me!
So, my symptoms:
-constant, complete exhaustion, major fatigue
-can't sleep, then can't wake up in the morning. I feel like early-late morning is when I get my most deep sleep
-I can't accomplish anything until evening/night- this is when I get all of my work and cleaning done
-no energy, tired and weak
-feel worthless and have lost ambition (I was on the verge of starting my photography business but have put it on hold until I get answers)
-200 each shower, then more throughout day (I've suddenly realized this week that I've lost maybe 30-40% of my hair!! My ponytail is very skinny all of a sudden). It's also suddenly very dry and breaking. My hairdresser wanted to know what the heck I was doing to it, and why I had taken a razor to a chunk in the back (I hadn't, of course)
-clumps of missing eyelashes, coming and going since Sept or so (probably much longer, but stood out as not being normal around then), when one eye regroups, the other loses
-thinning eyebrows w/ bald patches, one is much shorter than the other
-circular bald patch in pubic hair, between the size of a quarter and half dollar, getting larger recently
-bald patches at my temples and I a few weeks ago I realized I have huge bald patches behind my ears, and my hairline back there has gotten suddenly higher...more and more from one week to the next.
-I've realized I have alopecia areata, which is autoimmune (this further supports my Hashi's suspicion since people with AI disease tend to have more than one
I'm scared about the fact that I can't know how much hair I will lose.
-I've been on a 1200 calorie intake since Sept (raising it to 1500 when I was worried about eating too few calories). This has me on a 1-1.5 lb loss p/week track, which isn't happening. I track every bite I eat, and have cut out almost all breads and treats.
-I've worked out 4-5 days a week, doing Jillian Michael's Ripped, and recently switching for a while to the treadmill, 30-60 minutes speed walking and running, burning 400-500 calories.
-I've gained 20 lbs
-my face and eyes bloat up and swell off and on for a few days or a week at a time, then a day or two off, then I swell up again.
-my hands and feet swell, are numb and tingle, and I have carpal tunnel. I can't wear my rings most of the time
-tarsal tunnel, painful feet
I lose my balance when I walk- I always bump into walking buddies, or fall off the treadmill
-total lack though I weaned my now toddler 6 months ago, and am in a wonderful relationship with my husband. This concerns me!
I'm always freezing and wear socks to bed. However, I can't tolerate the heat and sweat a horrific amount, to the degree of soaking my clothing and hair, which is mortifying. Everyone else is always comfortable when I am cold or hot.
My body temp runs very low, and my basal temp stays around 96.1-96.4 most of the time. I just started sweating when I'm freezing, which seems bizarre, and I'm disturbed by sudden strong BO which I have NEVER had in my life.
My nails are peeling and breaking and my skin is out of control dry.
I've had horrible Anxiety over the last few years, followed by bouts of depression. I've almost become housebound. I'm seeing that I can't tolerate stress- my chest tightens and I start to feel panicky, even for little things like my kids all flipping out at the same time. I wonder if my adrenals are effected in addition?
So many of my symptoms I chalked up to pregnancy and breastfeeding (I've had 3 sons in 6 years), but now that I'm done, everything has worsened rather than improved. I've had time periods that now seem like a pattern of flare ups in hindsight. Two major times- one before my wedding. I had a sudden case of full body urticaria, which I thought was a reaction to the Z pack I had been on for pneumonia. I gained a bunch of weight and had to starve myself to get into my wedding dress! At that same time, pineapple started giving me a hives reaction as well. The second time was 2 years later, a month or so after the birth of my first child. My blood pressure jumped and I suddenly swelled up 20lbs. I had heart palpitations and night sweats. My ob/gyn at the time wondered if it was post-partum preeclampsia, but I now wonder if it was postpartum thyroiditis. I also have endometriosis and ovarian cysts, and have had such heavy, painful periods since I started that I was put on the pill at 15 to even it out (which it didn't). I had an echocardiogram before I had children due to strong heart palpitations- it was fine. I found that coughing will reset it.
I feel like this summer/fall I had another flare up. I had just weaned my baby and it seemed like i got thrown off hormonally. I felt anxious and paranoid. I was sweating buckets, my hair started to fall out. My eyes were so gritty and painful that I had to switch from monthly to daily contacts, and my eye doctor said my hormones were all screwed up.
I have asthma, geographic tongue, and I've had pneumonia and bronchitis multiple times a year my whole life. I have a family history of thyroid conditions, thyroid cancer, lupus, diabetes and arthritis.
In a couple of weeks I will be seeing my 4th doctor since the Fall for this. When i expressed alarm and concern for my sudden and large weight gain, the first one (in Oct) told me I was obese, even though I had just gotten back into my size 12 jeans from 14's. I didn't feel comfortable with her, so I saw a different doctor in the practice (in Nov).
At the time, I didn't know I had pneumonia and was very weepy (which is unlike me) when I described my concerns. She immediately decided I was depressed because my TSH was "perfect." I had read about the fact that TSH wasn't the end all and be all, and pushed for more extensive bloodwork. She told me that she wouldn't approve it so that it couldn't be covered by insurance (which seemed a bit vindictive to me). I said that, since I have a high deductible health insurance, I'd be paying for it all out of pocket, anyway, so bring it on. She told me my thyroid was perfect and gave me the name of a psychiatrist. I told her that, if anything, I was discouraged and alarmed by my symptoms, rather than mentally depressed....i felt that there was there was a difference between having a hormonally depressed mood and straight up psychiatric depression. She said they were the same thing. She reluctantly ran the blood work on my second visit, and was so irritated with me that she stomped out of the office after only 3-4 minutes (I paid at least $100 for that quality visit).
Lab work from November '12:
TSH: 2.69 (.35- 5.00) it was 1.32 in 2002
T3Free: 2.9 (2.3- 4.2) 31%
T4Free: 1.0 (0.8- 1.8) 20%
TPOab 48 (<61) I'll be interested to see if this number has risen since then....it seems to be pretty close to the cut off and it almost seems at this point that antibodies are antibodies, especially since I've developed alopecia and urticaria, both AI...and geographic tongue is suspected to be AI as well.
Tg ab 23 (<61)
B12: 270 (211-911) this still seems low to me
Vit D: 56 (18-78) this seems fine?
She didn't do a test for anemia.
In Jan, my heart rate was 52 (I'm NOT an athlete
), and my bp was 120/90, it's usually perfect, and the above number is more reminiscent of my high bp post partum.
I was able to switch Dr's offices last month (Jan) and was seen by a new Dr. By now I had done extensive research and had educated myself on the different T's and Frees and so on
as well as optimal levels and antibodies. This new doctor listened very carefully and checked me over thoroughly, which was a HUGE step in the right direction. I felt neutral/positive about it, though a couple of little things didn't sit too well with me. First of all, she didn't seem to have experience with this and didn't know what she was looking at with the lab work. She did ask me how I felt about the results and I geeked out on her a little bit and explained a few things. Then, when I was telling her about my extreme hair loss, she said it was normal for hair to thin as we age. I was a couple of weeks from my 35th birthday. She wanted to see me in a few weeks for more bloodwork, which is a positive.
At the risk of burning that bridge, which I really don't want to do, I took an appointment with a Naturopath ND I had been trying to get in with. They said they basically specialize in this, so my feeling is that, since I have to pay for every visit and every batch of lab work, I'd love to see someone who knows something about it, rather than have to educate my doctor. I'm postponing my PC appointment for now and switching gears toward the naturopath. It baffles me that my symptoms have all been ignored and everyone only sees the TSH. I'm so cautiously hopeful about this Naturopath, and am bracing myself for disappointment.....
I've kept a thorough notebook of my symptoms and lab results. The more I learn, the more I realize that this is something I've struggled with for possibly almost 20 years! I just want to be an active, fun mother to my 3 little boys, rather than a drained dud!