Monday, January 17, 2011

The Graviest of Grave Posts

Graves Disease.  Symptoms include: Hair loss, irritability, anxiety, insomnia, fatigue, muscle loss, increased appetite, jittery, mood swings, bulging eyes, and a rash on your shins.  I have all of the above except the rash and bulging eyes.  I've had these ailments for a while but didn't see a correlation.  I kept saying "I just had a baby."  I figured that credited to...
1.  The hair loss: Mostly in the back- but also above my ears.  It's bald basically... and still coming out by the fistfuls.
2.  The Increased appetite- I am nursing a moose.  But my appetite is insatiable.  I am constantly hungry.  After dinner I'm like "What's for dessert?"  After dessert I'm like "What's for Dinner Number Two?"
3.  Anxiety:  Every new mom worries if they are doing things right to the point of insanity, right?  RIGHT?!
4.  Insomnia: I figured was related to the anxiety.  I'd be awake repeating my fears in my head over and over and never got any sleep.  And then one night I wasn't repeating anything.  I was just wide awake.  It was 3 AM.  I didn't even feel tired.  I got up and started laundry.  The pattern has continued even though the laundry is done.  Sometimes I color.
5.  Fatigue:  Is it really fair to list fatigue as a symptom next to Insomnia?  I mean common sense, kiddos.  It eventually catches up with you.
6.  Irritability:  I've always been a lit fuse.  I hardly thought you could count your personality as a symptom.
7.  Jittery:  I was getting the shakes a lot.  I wrote it of as the shivers since it was cold out.
8.  Mood swings:  Was Ken being a crab apple?  Was Ken being a candy apple?  Thus predicted my mood and the swinging thereof.
9.  Muscle Loss: This is when I figured something was up.  In the mornings my hands would really be sore.  I thought I was so tired my muscles were just exhausted.  Then, one morning, I went to get Koley out of his crib and I couldn't grasp him with my hands.  It's been that way every morning.  I scoop Kole up with my forearms and shimmy him up to my elbows. Bless his heart for not complaining.  He thinks it's fun.

Ken convinced me to see my endocrinologist.  How cool am I?  You may have a hair stylist, or a manicurist... I have an endocrinologist.  Believe me though, you're better off not needing one.  They are exPENsive!  My endocrinologist ran some tests and then called me himself... personally... at like 7 o'clock one night.  He told me I have Graves' Disease.  He explained it was an auto-immune disease.  Which immediately made me think of AIDS- which convinced me I was on my way to my own early Grave.  That's why it's called Graves' Disease, right?  People die.  After I found my bearings and a pen and paper I asked him to start all over.  I wrote down a lot of what he said and after I got off the phone couldn't explain a bit of it.  I tried and it sounded like this:
You know, Graves's Disease... it's auto-immune... your TSH receptors recept the tors around your thyroid and you get really moody and loose your hair.... your body attacks the TSH 4 levels from 3.  Graves'!  C'mon- You've heard of that.
Yea no one has.  A grave situation indeed.  So I've done my own research.  (The Mayo Clinic has excellent information on this condition.)  It seems to me like the most severe and irreversible case of hyperthyroidism.  That can lead to really cool sounding tragedies... like a Thyroid Storm.  Pack your umbrellas!  Immediate treatment was called for.  But this medicine... kills fetuses.  Now, I'm not pregnant but if it kills fetuses it's probably not a great idea to give it to Kole four or five times a day.  So I've started to wean my little man cubby.  That's another adventure, another post.  That will have pictures.  I promise.


Cinderella, the A-Train and Our Little Caboose said...

I have heard of Graves disease but never knew what it was. I am so sorry Patty, I will be thinking about you and surely you will let me know if you need anything. Even though I am not close, I make a pretty good long distance friend. Take care of yourself.

Chris loves Julia said...

I don't like this Patty Pat. I don't like this at all. Chris and I are for sure praying for you. And on a more aesthetic note, I have some extensions that I would be HAPPY to help you with. Love you seester!

Karlenn said...

WHAT??? Dude, first the pituitary thing, and now THIS??? You are being so chipper about this, Patsters. You are amazing. I would just be... pissed. Your hands wouldn't grasp? What the crap? That is horrible! Now we know why you've been so sore, and why your back hurts so badly. I'm glad this is an easy fix - meds. But I'm just mad this happened to you. The pituitary thing is enough to deal with, you know? Ugh. I'm calling you tomorrow. Kissy, kissy. I'll put your name in at the temple next time I go. And I'll obviously be praying for you. What is a Thyroid Storm? That sounds really ominous.