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Hypochondria? Stress? Or What?

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Old 04-17-2006, 03:13 PM   #1
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Georgia
Posts: 3
mmode HB User
Hypochondria? Stress? Or What?

Hello. I am brand new here and am really hoping to find some help. I am a 30 year old male who just relocated to a new city and state because of a job transfer. This is the first time I have actually been living in a place on my own (no roommates, girlfriend, etc.). I have been here about two months now and have been going through states of what I believe are anxiety, stress, depression and hypochondria.
I must start out by saying that just more than one year ago, my girlfriend passed away at the age of 24 from acute myelogeneous leukemia (AML). It was never diagnosed or detected by doctors and the symptoms masked themselves as tonsilitis. 10 days after her tonsilectomy, her body just couldn't fight the cancer and the effects from the surgery and she passed away.
Needless to say, I have gone through much depression and sadness from the loss of her. In August of 05, I went to the hospital for what I thought was a heart attack. Tests were run of course and those came back fine. I went to my PCP about a month and a half later complaining of severe fatigue symptoms. He admitted me to the hospital again (this time keeping me for two days). A bunch of heart tests were run then as well, including an EKG, echo, stress test, and some sort of nuclear test. They all came back fine. I was released from the hospital and told to start exercising and that my symptoms were anxiety and stress related. He also told me to quit smoking and prescribed me Wellbutrin to help (and also for depression). Right before I moved here I visited my doctor again, this time because of a pain on my right nipple. The doctor examined my breasts and recommended a mammogram!! That really freaked me out even more than I was. The mammogram came back without any problems.
Now since I have moved, I seem to almost convince myself that I have something else seriously wrong with me. My anxiety and depression seems to have grown significantly since I relocated. I visited a new doctor here and told him of my girlfriend's passing and the hospital visits and such. My doctor has prescribed me Xanax 0.5mg as needed along with the Wellbutrin. This doesn't seem to help as much as I would have thought it would. I have broke out with hives (which has never happened before). That was cleared up with a steroid injection at an urgent care clinic. I was told that it was most likely due to stress. I have a complete loss of appetite. I am very fatigued and would rather lie down and sleep instead of doing anything else. I often think I possibly the same thing my girlfriend had. When I look up symptoms that I have on the internet, leukemia seems to keep popping up right there on my computer monitor. This really scares me. And I am also afraid that if I tell my doctor what I fear, he will not take me seriously. Please help...what can I do?

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Old 04-17-2006, 03:43 PM   #2
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 54
MadelynsMom HB User
Re: Hypochondria? Stress? Or What?

I am very sorry to hear of your late girlfriend. It sounds like anxiety to me. I have generalized anxiety disorder, and I am quite fatigued. I too thought I was having a heart attack and everything was fine. They gave me xanax at the hospital that night and I calmed right down. Anxiety is sometimes brought on by a tramatic time in your life (such as the death of your gf, or in my case, the birth of my daughter who has a seizure disorder). Mine started as sudden feelings of panic, brought on for no apparent reason. Then the chest pains, then the shortness of breath, fatigue, irratability. I have diagnosed myself with many things, and the internet DOES NOT HELP! It only makes it worse. Believe your doctor when they say everything is OK.

Old 04-17-2006, 03:50 PM   #3
Senior Veteran
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: melbourne, vic, aust
Posts: 7,370
hry33 HB Userhry33 HB User
Re: Hypochondria? Stress? Or What?

welcome mmode
the wellbutrin should help but can take 6 weeks to work properly and occasionally never works, the xanax always helps
learn new ways of relaxing and calming yourself, gentle exercise and long walks will also help try to stop worrying about your heart and to ignore it and ignore your body

there may be homesickness involved, if things dont improve think about asking to be transferred back home
stay with us and read the other posts
Life is not a dress rehearsal

Old 04-17-2006, 08:10 PM   #4
Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 186
mishkaaa HB User
Re: Hypochondria? Stress? Or What?

i'm very sorry to hear about your girlfriend.

my grandmother, who i was very close with, passed away from cancer in dec '04. she lived across the street at my aunt's house. i saw her every day and was there when she died. my ex boyfriend, who i was very, very close with, passed away last year. he had ewing's sarcoma, a rare type of bone cancer. i'm 18, and you and i have quite an age difference, but i know how you feel. he was only 16 years old when he died, would have been 17 in a month. he battled for less than a year and he couldn't take it anymore. after he died, that's when my anxiety kicked in also. as a kid, i always was very nervous and hypochondriatic, but it was bad this time. he died in april '05, and my symptoms of anxiety/depression snowballed and exploded in august of '05. i have pure-obsessional OCD, depression, anxiety/panic attacks .. it's not fun. i understand how you feel. i have been dealing with the pain of this crap for almost 7 months now. i know that if ryan (ex boyfriend) was here, things would be so much different. it breaks my heart every day that he's gone, but just remember -- although your girlfriend died, you cannot stop living. that is something very important that ryan taught me. at this point, i am not living my life to its full potential. it's hard now, because my aunt and uncle (husband&wife) were diagnosed with cancer within two months of eachother (aunt--sept '05, uncle--dec '05) they're both in their forties and have kids that are my age, very young. they live across the street from me and took care of my grandma when she was sick. needless to say, it's been a very rough year and a half, and things are very rough for me but i hope soon i will be better. i don't take any meds, just talk therapy. god bless, things will start looking up! you've gotta have hope

Old 04-17-2006, 08:29 PM   #5
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 90
Jonev11 HB User
Re: Hypochondria? Stress? Or What?

It sounds to me like you definitely are a hypochondriac and that you may have some OCD. It's ok to have OCD (all people have some OCD even ones who are considered Normal) it's just for them they can let go of things that bother them more quickly and effectively. For you and I we stress until we get sick. if your not getting pyschologic therapy you may want to consider it. I am no doctor and I can't diagnose anything but I have been through all of the tests, all of the fears of this disease and that disease. if I heard about it I had it. Real hypochondriac. I was OBSESSED with trying to get a 100% gaurantee that I will be alright. As we all know nothing is 100% but I would be so stressed and worried that I know I made myself more sick. You have to stop the cycle of searching because nothing good comes of it.

Last edited by ms_mod; 04-17-2006 at 11:25 PM.

Old 04-18-2006, 12:43 AM   #6
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: WA, USA
Posts: 96
Catt18 HB User
Re: Hypochondria? Stress? Or What?

Hey- I'm really sorry to hear about your girlfriend... haha I am a complete hypochondiac as well...and well after hearing that have more reason to believe (in my mind) that i too have leukemia! I mean i've never been diagnosed obviously-- but DID just get my tonsils out just 6 days ago...and have been feeling terrible...prior to the operation and now....and one of my close friends died of leukemia...and well i just haven't been feeling like my normal self...all i have been doing is sleeping.... (which was something she had done too) probably depression. but still i guess lol that just isn't enough to cut it... I know on a reasonable level that it's completely outrageous to spend all my time absorbed in reading about leukemia... but to me it sounds realistic... I'm doing everything i can NOT to look it up on the MD sites! So I definately know what you're going through... I've been a hypochondriac ever since i can remember-- my grandma always had another disease (in her mind) every couple days...and i guess spending soo much time with her it rubbed off on me-- haha and with my mom added to the equation who was completely rational...and thought we were both weird...and always told me "jaz everything is fine" ect ect... i felt she didn't put enough energy in to worrying for me so i just worried more! I also have developed panic attacks and anxiety... I don't really know what i could say to help except that you have to be rational...even when all signs in your mind are pointing to something...don't let your thoughts get the best of you

Old 04-18-2006, 12:08 PM   #7
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Georgia
Posts: 3
mmode HB User
Re: Hypochondria? Stress? Or What?

Thank you all so much for your support and your input. You all have really helped to make me feel better and much much more at ease. Thank you for sharing your own experiences as well...that certainly helps too. I will continue to stay here and monitor posts! You all are terrific!

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