Thursday, March 18, 2010

When Bad News is Great News

Well, I wasn't gone a whole month, but it was more than a week.
I got such good news today, that I felt it was worth blogging about.
Also, important for my kids to know--family medical history.

For about 18 months, I have been in pain. On a scale of 1-10, my level upon waking each day was about 8. As the day progressed, it would quiet down to about 3. I was never pain free and some days I'd be driven to take Motrin all day, just to get by.

My family doctor did some blood work, listened to my symptoms and sent me for a CT scan. It was determined that I had Costochondritis (inflamed rib joints). There's no treatment for it.
I accepted that.
The trouble is, the pain spread. All over torso pain made me want to get out of bed the minute I opened my eyes every morning. I used to love lying in bed after the alarm went off.
My hips and thigh bones made sitting to eat breakfast, painful. Riding in the car for more than a hour or so has been excruciating.
I figured being tired all the time and having a fuzzy mind, was because I wasn't sleeping well.
My family doctor was at a loss.

My friend, DD, suggested that it wouldn't hurt to see a Rheumatologist. Lee insisted.
Off to a new doctor. Love her, by the way. She spent an hour with me, discussing symptoms and wanted me to do two things before we moved forward.
1. Do a bunch of lab tests (8 tubes of blood--aarrrggghhh).
2. Take a bunch of x-rays.

Two days later I got a call from her office. She said my thyroid numbers were out of whack and wanted me to see an Endocrinologist before I had my follow up with her.
Another new doctor. I started to feel a little down. Was this going to be the beginning of seeing doctors on a regular basis?
Dr. Endocrinologist is loved as well.
(two specialist with amazing bedside manners--what are the odds?)

Dr. Endo figures I ought to feel awful and tired and fuzzy.
A normal thyroid number is 3 to 5. Mine is 14.4!
Since I have no family history of hypothyroidism and haven't had "3 CT scans a day for 3 weeks" on my neck, I have Hashimoto's Disease. It means I probably have an auto-immune problem and it has attacked my thyroid. Despite its ominous name, it is very common.
It can be treated with a pill!!


So, why the picture of Vitamin D stuff?
Turns out that my vitamin D levels are strangely low as well.
Normal levels are 30--100. Doctors like 50 the best.
Mine is 23.

Vitamin D deficiency cause bone pain.

Again, it can be fixed with a pill!

My pain and brain fog are headed out.
I might lose a pound or two.
I might be able to linger in bed when the alarm goes off.
I can't express how wonderful it feels to finally know I'm not just aging beyond my years.
I was so sad thinking that my body was turning on me so early.
I was really sad knowing that Lee would like to travel when the kids are out of the house and I have trouble sitting for more than an hour.
I was angry knowing I could barely finish a sentence because of brain fog. The words just weren't there.
More than anything, I felt like I would be in progressively worse pain for the rest of my life.
No answers.

Now I have some.


  1. Well - that's the best news I've heard in a very long time! Can't wait to see the "new" you!

  2. Carla - I am really happy for you - not to know there is something wrong, but to know there is something you can do about it! My sister has Hashimoto's Disease and thyroid problems. Getting the medication just right is an on going struggle - but she is a new person and doing very well after 15 years of the diagnosis. Now you know what is wrong. That's a significant first step! And I am learning how important vitamin D is - and it's virtually impossible to get enough from sun shine these days. TAKE YOUR PILLS! I'm so happy you know what needs to be done. (((((((hugs))))))) Tomorrow is a new and beautiful day.

  3. What a relief! I'm glad for you. Low Vitamin D has been a very big problem for three of my friends. Two are on prescriptions. I take it if I'm not out in the sun for two consecutive days because I feel blah quickly without it. I'm glad the answer is this simple!

  4. That's great news CeeCee! So glad to see you back and thrilled that you finally have answers. Great, great news! Here's to you being pain free. :)

  5. Glad you blogged again, I keep checking in just in case :) I'm SO glad you got everything figured out!! That means once these pills get into your system your body will regulate and you'll feel like a million buck! I'm so happy for you! Much love!

  6. I am sorry you were in such pain! I am so glad that you've found help. I hope you'll be feeling better soon!

  7. Welcome back to life... we missed you. Hugs and love...

  8. It is simply amazing the relief that finally having a clear diagnosis can bring. I think it's incredibly wonderful that a teeny tiny little vitamin d pill is going to make everything better.
    I'm very happy for you CeeCee.

  9. I am so happy to hear you finally have an answer. Not knowing what is wrong is an awful feeling. Here's to you feeling better!!

  10. Peace of mind is the best thing. Good that you are starting to feel more like yourself again.

  11. Greetings from Slovenia! I just stumbled upon your blog from another blog and I can only say I can totally understand. In the past 2 months my thyroid went completely crazy, working for 5 people instead of just me. I've been on medication for 3 weeks now and I can't say it's much better. I am on a month long sick leave, too. Let's hope we can tame this thyroid and start living a normal life again. All my best!

  12. Glad to hear you got some answers, and it looks like some simple pills will help.

  13. Glad to hear you discovered the answer to your health problems, and a couple of simple pills will help.

  14. Hmmm, makes me wonder about all my phantom pains and brain fogs that I often have. I just thought I was getting old.
    I wonder if Vit D deficiency is more common during the winter because of being stuck indoors and wearing tons of heavy clothing.

    I was diagnosed at least 6 years ago with hypothyroidism, but the doctor just gave me a subscription and never explained what was wrong, so I never picked up or took the pills.
    I wonder if there are consequences in not taking the pills?

    I'm very glad you've had such a positive experience with your doctors and that this condition is treatable and you'll be feeling much better soon.

    Thanks for sharing, too.