Here I am getting closer to 50 and suddenly I start to gain weight for no reason, I have a “tummy” now where before I had a relatively flat stomach even though I’ve always battled with weight due in part to my chronic Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. “Info on Hashimoto’s Throiditis” (Just like Oprah. I would wish for something else to have in common with Oprah if I got a choice)
The rest of my symptoms weren’t much fun either!
- I couldn’t sleep more than a few hours in a row without waking.
- I was a bit depressed even though my relationship with my boyfriend turned fiance’ turned husband and two fabulous almost grown daughters was the joy of my life.
- Lack of energy and tired even through I couldn’t sleep for very long
- I started loosing strength when I was working out
- I started having aches and pains in strange places
- Digestion issues
- Higher blood pressure than ever in my life.
- Feeling that something just was NOT right in my body
All of these symptoms didn’t start at once but over the span of the last 2 years they have gotten more pronounced along with a “pending doom” type of feeling that unfortunately lots of women I know have with a greater frequency than our male counterparts.
I also have arthritis in my joints so whatever aches and pains I wasn’t associating with Menopause I figured were that. So… I decided to go and get a physical and get set up to see a Orthopedic doc to see if having a hip replacement was eminent and maybe that was the reason I was feeling sort of miserable more and more.
Blood tests revealed that I had a VERY high level of calcium in my blood, elevated to the point of hypertension blood pressure, my lady doc is looking at me with that concerned look… yikes! What is happening now. She explains that she needs to run parathyroid blood tests on me as she suspects something. What now? Being at the doctors office has the ability to make you panic before you even know what is going on.
Next blood test shows that my parathyroid numbers are all sky high which tells her she was right in her diagnosis I have hyperparathyroidism. YIKES! The longest word ever.
Hyperparathyroidism is a condition where 1 or all of your 4 glands develops a tumor on it which is excreting lots of calcium into your blood stream causing all of the symptoms above. You mean I might not have to be miserable until the end of time? WOW… I’m excited and scared at the same time.
She tells me I’ll have to have the tumor removed and quickly explains that 99% of the time the tumor is NON-Malignant (no cancer) and that I’ll need to see an Endocrinologist next.
Look for part 2 of this series to join with me in this my pursuit of health! Appointment with the Endo next week!
No it was NOT just Menopause!
Resources about Hyperparathyroidism:
- The National Endocrine & Metabolic Diseases Info Center
- Hyperparathyroid Wiki
- Mayo Clinic on Hyper Parathyroid Disease (My doc recommended this one)
- Endocrine Web
At Last! No more waiting. I feel at peace about having this hyperparathyroidectomy done. (The nurse asked me to say in my own words what I was having done… it’s quite a mouthful) I think the peace comes knowing that this is really what’s wrong with me… and the prognosis for change for the better is very good.
There was a news special on about not taking herbs or aspirin of any type before surgery without clearing it with your surgeon as these can lead to complications.
I take 2 baby aspirin a day for maintenance like Dr. OZ tells you to do, but even this small amount could compromise you during surgery. I searched online for people talking about their recovery from this operation, and this will be the hardest part for me. I’m not supposed to talk, smile or laugh excessively until I’m healed.. WHAT? not talk? I didn’t know that was going to be part of the deal. I guess I’ll be Text Messaging peeps a bunch! I want to thank all my friends and family online and off for their prayers and offers of help. Know it is very appreciated. I hope to come back and relate some news sometime soon for those of you with similar symptoms out there.
This is my two week post op report card, and it’s a good one!
The first week was rough, I’m sure just due to the effects that any surgery has on your system along with hormone and blood chemicals all flying up and down, but now at two weeks post op from my parathyroidectomy I am feeling MUCH better.
The symptoms that were IMMEDIATELY fixed are:
my blood pressure is now totally normal, all the time
normal bladder control (pre-op I ALWAYS had to pee and could barely make it in time)
bone and muscle pain GONE!
I have lost 7 pounds (yeah!)
digestion MUCH improved
Sex Drive back… (double yeah!)
Still to go:
I am currently REALLY emotional, I didn’t have the mood swings when I was pre-op like some people do, but I am having them now… I’m thinking it has to do with the parathyroid having to adjust itself.
I still get a little shakey when I don’t get my calcium. I had an appointment with my Endocrinologist on Tuesday and he has me on 1000 milligrams of calcium 4x a day along with a prescription for Vitamin D that I take once a week. I am also scheduled for a bone density scan in two weeks to see how much damage has been done to my bones during this calcium leaching period of God only knows how long. After he looks at that and determines the results he’ll redo my levels.
I am musing that perhaps my weight gain over the last two years and onset of menopause symptoms including rapid weight gain for now apparent reason may have to do with the fact I read on my synthyroid medication I picked up yesterday. (I also have Hashimoto’s Thyroid Disease) It says not to take it with calcium… so I’m wondering if that was/is part of the reason for the weight gain (Hashimoto’s is hypo thyroid) is that the synthyroid couldn’t really do it’s job to help regulate my metabolism with my calcium levels being constantly so high in my blood stream. Only time will tell
Parathyroidectomy is surgery to remove parathyroid glands or parathyroid tumors. Parathyroidectomy is recommended when one or more parathyroid glands are producing excessive amounts of parathyroid hormone.