Archive for August, 2010

It has been an amazing shock to me to hear about all of the women I know who suffer from thyroid disorders after birth.  What’s even more interesting is that most go undiagnosed for years! 

Friend 1:  Justine

After “Justine’s” 3rd baby she lost 30 extra pounds. Doctor never ordered a thyroid test. Justine’s hair was falling out, eyes were dry, was constantly tired, and felt stressed. The doctor’s always hear the word “stress” and assume it’s the cause of all of the symptoms, including her insomnia. After I explained to her that her symptoms sounded similar to mine, she went to a walk-in clinic and got a TSH test done (since protocol in Canada requires that TSH level come back as irregular before testing T3 or T4). Her TSH levels were very low, but still in the “normal” range of 0.3-5.0.  Almost everyone in Justine’s family has a thyroid disorder of some sort. It’s been almost a year since I’ve known her, she’s dropped her family doctor and on the waiting list for a new doctor (mine, which comes highly recommended – by me) and has yet to have her free T3 or T4 levels tested yet. In comparison, her sister was diagnosed with Graves disease in her early 20s, but after 3 years of symptoms. Justine’s sister’s TSH levels were in the low-normal range. They thought she had mono before finally ordering a T3/T4 test which revealed a thyroid problem.  I gave Justine 1/3 of a 50mg PTU pill and she said she felt great for 10 hours afterwards. 

Friend 2: Carrie (more…)


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What a ride pregnancy is – top it off with Graves disease and it’s a bloody roller coaster.  So, I went to the doctor yesterday and got the results back from my latest blood test.  For some reason they have stopped looking at free  T3 and T4 levels and just ticked off “TSH”. However, the result of my TSH level was over 1.0!  Since my diagnosis with Graves disease in October 2009 (although my symptoms started in August), my TSH level has always been under 0.05. 

Here’s the interesting part. I had upped my medication on several evenings over the past 4 weeks due to extreme heart palpitations between 4:00 p.m. and bedtime.  So, I don’t know what’s going on there yet, but I am comforted to know that my thyroid levels are in the normal range for now – which explains the 6 lb weight gain in the last 4 weeks. Up until 4 weeks ago I hadn’t gained any weight. Well, I’m all caught up now. I’ll have to be extra careful what I eat from now on.  

My hair is still falling out, but not as badly as it was a little while ago.  It’s thinner but not embarrassingly so, yet.

My eyes are the same as always – a little puffy underneath.  I’m still upset about losing my beloved dog unexpectedly and cry from time to time, which doesn’t help. It was just such a shock and he was only 6. He slept in my bed every night and followed me around so I miss him constantly. Have decided to wait until after the baby to get another one, even though I desperately crave a doggy’s love in my home. 

Well, that’s all the news I have for now. I have a requisition for an ultrasound for 19 weeks, so maybe my next post will include my baby’s sex!  Or, I may keep it a secret until the birth. I haven’t decided yet…so exciting!

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It’s been a rough year for me. I hope it’s not about the get rougher. I am currently 14 weeks pregnant, and I have Graves disease. I was told that things get better in 2nd trimester, but for the last three weeks my thyroid levels have felt very high: I’ve been exhausted, my heart pounding and my hair falling out.  Week 14 has been the worst! Off to see the endocrinologist today to figure out why my thyroid is rebelling. I don’t want to put this baby at risk! I’ve had to take triple my regular PTU dosage yesterday, just to keep my heart from exploding.  Woke up at 3 am for the 5th night in a row to take extra PTU so I can get through a night. Brutal.

I had a terrible sinus cold in July and after in cleared up in a month I still have post-nasal phlegm. It’s disgusting.

I lost my beloved dog last week, which I’m sure is not helping things. I miss him dearly. 

I’m waiting to get officially hired by the school board (because I switched careers last year, around the time I got GD).

I’ll keep you posted!

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Okay, so about a month ago my dog started vomiting. He lost interest in his food. He was lethargic.  5 days later we took him to the vet who said it must be food poisoning. We gave him antibiotics and electrolytes. 

A week later, he seemed worse. He was hiding from us: under the kitchen table, refusing to come in from outside. He’d sit and his head would bob/shake. Sometimes he’d pant hard. He started eating again when forced (we put the food under his nose or hand fed him).  We took him back to the vet who diagnosed a neck problem. She said he had no fever. His stool looked okay. His temperature was okay. The only thing he wouldn’t do was track a donut with his head. He refused to put his head down. She told us to rest him and if it didn’t get better to get some pain meds and some anti-inflammatory medication.

A week+ later, my dog seems worse than ever. Last night he tipped over. It appears he’s losing strength in his hind legs and is not stable. He yelps in anticipation of being bumped or picked up. I’m so nervous. Tomorrow is the earliest we can get him into the vet.  

He’s a 6-year-old Lhasa-poo who, up until now, has not had any health issues what-so-ever, except, possibly, a sensitive tummy (occasionally pukes up his food).

If you have any idea of what this could be, please comment below~!!!!!

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Last time I blogged my symptoms of Graves Disease (GD) were melting away. About week 8 they started to pick up again, culminating at week 13. This past weekend I had many symptoms: thinning hair, heart palpitations, exhaustion.  I started upping my PTU dosage, taking double my meds over the weekend just to control my symptoms, which didn’t allow me to sleep and made me feel awful because they seemed to exacerbate my pregnancy symptoms of exhaustion and nausea.  I went to bed a 7:00 p.m. on Saturday night and woke up at 8:00 a.m. Sunday morning, with a brief awakening at 2:00 a.m. where I had to read a chapter of my book to fall back asleep (Tipping Point, by Malcolm Gladwell – the 3rd book of his that I’ve read – all amazing!).

The good news: I had a “dating ultrasound” at 10.5 weeks and I actually saw the baby and its heart beat so I felt fairly comfortable that I wasn’t going to miscarry. We told our parents at 12 weeks. We haven’t told our friends yet, but I’m also starting a new career so I’m not broadcasting my pregnancy for that reason too. Although, I have started to show (a month earlier than my first pregnancy). I’m still a little heavier than the first time around – I lost all of the baby weight but gained 10 pounds after the miscarriage, for some mysterious reason, even though GD was in full effect. 

The bad news: I don’t know if GD has anything to do with it, but the exhaustion and the nausea are way worse with this pregnancy than with my first. After my epic sleep on Saturday, I feel a little better. I’m cruising into 2nd trimester so hopefully the worst is behind me. 

Graves Ophthamology update: my eyes got a little worse with the increase in GD symptoms, but haven’t fully relapsed (i.e., photosensitivity remained fairly constant).

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