Saturday, November 4, 2017

Don't give up fighting for yourself

I remember when I  first started to get examined to see if there was something wrong with my thyroid, I wasn't really listened to at all. Yes, they could see that the right part of it was a bit enlarge but no danger, we send you to do an ultrasound on your thyroid...So I went to get my first ultrasound on my throat, the whole thing went very quick and I wasn't given any info more than that yes, the right part was enlarged, after that the doctor seemed to be in a hurry, he didn't ask me if I had any questions or so, he just started rushing of, I tried to ask a question and I promise I'm not exaggerating when I tell you that all he did was give me a quick  "no"  and then he said "goodbye" without even looking  at me and left the room with me sitting there not knowing anything about what happens next. A while later was I sent to the endocrine unit for some more help, the so called expert I meet there told me that none of my long list of symptoms I had was because of my thyroid, so my sudden weight gain even though I was training hard almost every day, was not because of my thyroid, the joint pain, the shortness of breath, the fact that I got lactic acid in my legs in no time (again I was in good shape when all this happened so it was out of the ordinary for me) , unbearable fatigue,  and so much more.. non of that was because of my thyroid, even though it now was proven that something was wrong with it, even though we didn't know just what yet.  They just waved it of, why you might ask? Well, cause I also suffer from depression and therefore she said that ALL my symptoms  (more than what I've listed here) were just psychosomatic.( Even though I lived with my depression for years, I am getting help for it and never had any physical symtoms.)  The only thing she listen to was when I said that I had a hard time breathing while training and I lied to her and said it had ruined my sport career  (white lie, it just meant I couldn't compete in a local taekwondo competition, I have certainly never had a career in sports.), she took that seriously enough to put me on a waiting list to have my thyroid removed, I didn't really think I needed to have it removed, but I was desperate for getting help with my problems and I thought this was the only way considering no one believed what a hard time I had with it. I had also mentioned that my period was irregular, so the doctor sent me to get my blood work done to see if they could find something wrong with my hormones. I wasn't told exactly what she was looking for, but when I checked my journals a few week later I could read that she looked for pcos.. since she never got back to me I just assumed that she didn't find anything  (although I do suspect I can hade endometrios, but that's a whole other story). The carousel with my thyroid goes on,

I had a few ultrasounds on my throat, the right part definitely enlarged, split opinions on the left. I did a lot of blood work, not much to say about that. Somehow I still managed to advocate for myself hard enough to actually get an appointment with a surgeon. He tells me that before doing the surgery I must do a biopsy on my thyroid  (yay, needle in my throat!) So I get an appointment to do this in another city, two needle right next to each other (looked like i've been bitten by a vampire..), doesn't hurt, so if anyone has something like this coming up, don't worry, the thought of it is worse than what it actually is! Anyway, time to wait for another doctors appointment, can't stress enough how grateful I am for the Swedish health care system, otherwise I could never afford all this. Anyway, get to see the doctor and finally, a year after my symptoms started showing I find out I have Hashimotos, didn't know what it was, the doctor tells me it's a chronic autoimmune illnesses that attacks the thyroid gland so it stops working, and that's pretty much all he tells me, oh yeah, he also told me that the blood work I had done before the biopsy showed that I probably had an autoimmun disease, but they didn't tell me that before they sent me to get the biopsy. 
After my diagnosis I have done a lot of reading up on hashimotos, and it really does effects the entire body, it gives joint pain, shortness of breath, slow/non functioning metabolism, lowers your stamina, your body temperatur goes down, and of course gives you chronic fatigue. I'm also at risk for diabetes, fibromyalgi, ME, celiaci, and endometriosis  (as I said earlier, I think I might already have endo, but that's another story for another day.) 50% of people with hashimotos develop one or more autoimmune diseases in 5-8 years time, 

So, I have the diagnosis, they know it's something wrong with my thyroid, they know my immunsystem is attacking my thyroid, and I feel like crap. Oh no, but wait, even though this is happening and you feel shitty we can't help you just jet, your immune system has to attack your thyroid some more, even though it's common knowledge that you can be sick, have all the symptoms and even have too low amount of thyroid hormones in your body for over a year before it shows up in your blood work, you don't get any help before it does. So now you have to live with this and walk around feeling crappy, but we won't help you cause we can't see anything in your blood. But you definitely have this illness that will affect both your physical and mental health. 
So, I kept fighting for myself, kept pressure on doctors for regular check ups and blood work to see how it progressed, and then "finally" this summer, two years after I started having problems, my blood work showed that my thyroid hormones were too low and I started on the lowest dose of levaxin. Now I just have to make sure to keep an eye on symptoms for some of the other illnesses hashimotos can cause you, and make sure to have regular check ups to see how my meds is working. 
I'm already fighting for getting help with some other problems with my body too, non thyroid related, and it's tiresome and you feel like a hypochondriac when you bring up one thing after another, but I really just want to get to the bottom with this once and for all. With my adhd I already have a mind that differ from most people, so can I
please at least get a body that works somewhat Ok? 

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