When it comes to any kind of disease process in the middle of all that is finding a happy medium as far as lab numbers go and even more so finding a happy medium with how you feel. For a long time I found that when my lab numbers were within normal ranges, I still felt sort of off. I’ve been dealing with my thyroid issues for going on 9 years and it seems that I can find a balance for a period of time and then something goes haywire.
Just in case anyone missed any of my prior posts. I was diagnosed with Graves Disease at 28 years old and I had a ginormous goiter. I chose to have radioactive iodine to stop my thyroid function as my symptoms were extreme in nature and were only temporarily subsided with Methimazole and a beta blocker. As soon as I had the radioactive iodine my body went through a total shock and went from one set of symptoms to a whole different beast.
I had an appointment with my doctor a few weeks later and by that time I was feeling like I was 90 years old. Imagine trying to do basic things like sitting at a desk to work, washing dishes, taking a shower, vacuuming your house and you feel like your whole body is destroyed. That was me and I almost felt like I was entirely broken.
We always talk about the physical changes and symptoms but never the mental toll that the disease process takes. I don’t think I was truly prepared for what would come with choosing a specific treatment or how quickly the symptoms would change in an entirely different direction. I felt useless, sad, and most of all defeated. I saw my doctor, got started on the hormone replacement but it legitimately took two months to feel any real relief.
The feeling better part came with other obstacles, weight gain, hair loss, dry skin, brittle nails, insane menstrual cycles. The gaining weight part was really difficult to overcome. I worked out, I ate healthy and in a lot of ways it didn’t bring a significant change. I continued to see my doctor regularly and had my dosage adjusted according to what the median range was for TSH and T4. The one thing my doctor just didn’t understand is no matter what my lab results said, I didn’t feel better physically or even mentally. This is 2 1/2 years post radioactive iodine and I couldn’t seem to find a balance.
There came a time when my doctor said that there wasn’t anything else that could be done. A few months later I switched to a different Endocrinologist. The night and day difference between doctors was huge. I had the one that talked me into radioactive iodine and after it was over then told me that I was stuck feeling bad all the time, and one that said we’re going to fix this. To be honest hearing we’re going to fix this was a breath of fresh air and a renewed sense of hope.
She adjusted my dosages up and down, I had labs more frequently until we found a happy medium regardless of what the range should have been. I was finally able to lose weight, I had less hair loss, dry skin is still an issue but then again I do live in the desert. I started to feel better physically and along with that the mental progressed as well. I still have struggles from time to time, but far less and fewer in between. If I hadn’t chosen to take my own health into my own hands and make a change I would probably still be feeling the same today.
I hope that someone finds this post helpful or maybe even relatable. Please feel free to leave feedback or questions if you have any. If there is anything that you would like to see in a blog post please let me know.