Sunday, October 26, 2008

Martha's Story

The Cushing's community recently lost Martha. In her honor, please read a post about Martha at Robin's blog. Much love and heartfelt sorrow for her partner Stacey during this difficult time. (((((Stacey)))))

Friday, October 17, 2008

Aspirin Allergy

I just looked at the clock and wondered: "Why am I up so late? Arg! Why, why... oh. I took 30mg of hydrocortisone today. That's why." Oops.

It started out innocently enough. My youngest daughter loves to cook with me, and baking? Even better!

We made a blueberry pie yesterday. Well, we intended to make a blueberry pie. If you don't add enough sugar to the blueberries, guess what you get? More like, a blueberry tart.

Guess who loved to bake *blueberry tart*, but didn't like to eat any? That would be my youngest daughter. So Momma ate some. Then some more, because tart or not, it was good. :)~

I couldn't figure out why my face was so red and felt sunburnt last night. It was sooo weird.

I woke up this morning with a face *so swollen* there were actual creases between my eyes and my nose. My cheeks were chipmunked out and it was hard to see out of those slits for eyes. ACK!

Benadryl only made me pass out and drool. Claritin didn't do much. Then my lungs started getting wheezy, so I went straight for the steroids.

I must say, nothing will put you off going to the ED or Urgent Care like having a 4 year old in tow. I think that could resolve ED *over-crowding* in one fell swoop. Just hand over a 4 year old that needs to be entertained and, most importantly you must answer every question they have to their complete satisfaction while you wait. Ha!

The hydrocortisone worked a bit, mostly stopped the wheezing that I was most worried about. [I have an epi-pen, so I wasn't completely crazed by staying home. ;)]

What on earth does this have to do with *aspirin*? Well, my dears, aspirin is a naturally occurring substance and if you are allergic to aspirin? Most likely, you'll have a reaction if you touch or eat:

fruit juice
fruit-flavored drinks
wine, rum, port or liquers
olive oil, peanut oil or sesame oil
tomato paste
spices, vinegar, mustard
honey, jam, liquorice, mints
almonds, water chestnuts
nuts, seeds
sweet potato

You can have:
peeled pears
bamboo shoots
white peeled "new" potatoes
poppy seeds
maple syrup
white sugar
sea salt
garlic (whole, peeled)
decaf coffee
soy milk
homemade pear juice
butter, margarine, canola oils
gin, whisky, vodka

Just a public service announcement.

Time to take some sleeping pills. And my pupils are this.big.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

"But I Am Not That Smart"

The new specialist mentioned that during my appointment in August. He was referring to rare diseases or complicated ones, I suppose.

Is that a heartening statement? I implore you; if you wield any power in your life over people that need your services, do not say that to a client. Especially one that will be billed regardless of your capacity for thought. Egads. For goodness sakes, you are billed as a research scientist and scholar.

So, I did manage to make it two months hormone-free and finally went to the lab for some blood tests.

TSH elevated, T4 low ~ secondary hypothyroidism still there

low Estradiol, LH and FSH ~ hypogonadism persists

8am cortisol & ACTH normal ~ woohoo! but without midnight serum & salivary results. I don't want to waste time doing any tests until there is some sort of agreement on what a "valid testing procedure" entails.

fasting insulin level is high ~ 20uU/mL on a range of 0-17

DHEA is low *insert adrenal mumbo jumbo*

RCDW high ~ ?

IPTH is high 80 on a range of 10 to 65, with 45 being a commonly considered high result for people under the age of 60 but a useless result in some senses since the Calcium level is currently pending

Bicarbonate is my only low electrolyte result, which is common for me.

All of that means... absolutely nothing to me! ;) Ok, it probably means something to someone somewhere.

I am not sure which way to go. One of my specialists better start coughing up answers, or handing out more lab slips, or Googling for me, or something...

Once again, it points towards something genetic, endocrine and usually an autosomal dominant trait. Which scares the beejeesus out of me, with two small children.