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Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Pre-Diagnosis: In a Nutshell

The problems probably started before I was even aware of them, but I first began to notice things in Summer ’05. It had been months since I had seen AF, but this was normal for me as I had never been regular. What wasn’t normal is that in June of ’05 AF arrived with a vengeance! After about 3 weeks I ended up going to emergency and they told me my iron levels were extremely low and put me on iron pills. Other than that “I was fine”. Well, my gyno wasn’t so sure of that and wanted to do some tests but I was leaving for vacation so she decided to hold off. Well, that was a mistake. Half way through vacation (in Toronto) I got the worst migraine I have ever had in my life. I am prone to them, but this one was not normal. I took my migraine medication, crossed my fingers, and slept through it. AF was still very much present and I was extremely weak and scared. I called my doctor as soon as we got back home and she said that enough was enough. I had an emergency D&C followed by multiple tests, x-rays, you name it! In the end, she said that all she saw was a tiny cyst on my ovary and other than that “I was fine” and “not to worry about it”.

I was NOT fine and I WAS worried so I went to see my GP around September ‘05. He sent me for a barrage of blood tests and noticed something interesting. Since the last tests I had done at the hospital in June, my thyroid levels had gone down. He said he would monitor them before panicking and asked me to do more blood tests around November for comparison. The levels had dropped again only this time significantly. So, he sent me to an endocrinologist and sure enough, hypothyroidism. At this point I had so many of the symptoms (abnormal menstrual cycles, fatigue, thinning eyebrows, low body temperature, etc...) that I just sort of attributed everything to hypothyroidism and went on about my life... taking one pill every morning for the rest of my life. (Note: At the time this sounded horrible, but now I am up to 7 pills a day so in retrospect this was pretty good)

Almost a year passed and things were going well. But then, it started to happen again; AF from hell!  I decided not to go and see my gyno because I felt that she would just dismiss it so I went to see my GP. But, before seeing him I read websites, forums, books, you name it and I had discovered something; I had all the symptoms of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). Unfortunately, as this is a fertility issue and he is not specialized in that area he couldn’t really help me but he did look at some information I had brought with me and said that it definitely looked plausible. He wrote me the referral I needed and within a couple of months I had my first appointment (of many to come) at the Royal Victoria Hospital (RVH).

To be continued...