Sunday, 7 August 2011

No, I'm not a hypochondriac...

....I'm just trying to find out why I feel like I've been hit by a ten ton truck so often!

Those of you who are used to me moaning about feeling unwell or who have the pleasure of my regular company will know what I'm talking about.

I'm just kind of writing this blog post as a reference for the future.

It's been a year now since I was first referred to the hospital mainly for investigations as to why I don't sweat (ever!) and why I overheat so often. A year later and I'm no closer to finding out why my body can't regulate its own temperature like most people do, and why I have days or weeks of every month where I wake up feeling like I have a hangover and feel generally awful.

A year ago at that first appointment they did take me seriously, but got sidetracked from my initial symptoms when they took my blood pressure. Back then it was averaging about 145/90 and was considered high. A year later it's been hitting 197/128 at times and is considered dangerous.

So, the average thirty-something year old doesn't have ridiculously high blood pressure. Even the ones who live on fast food, smoke 20 cigs a day and never get off the sofa don't have blood pressure like that. And I eat healthily and rarely sit down.

So to cut a long story short I started undergoing tests. Lots of tests. Firstly these involved taking lots of blood, and moved onto collecting ridiculous amounts of urine and a chest x-ray. They ruled out thyroid problems and adrenal problems, ruled out Cushings Disease and various other things from these tests.

Then I had a kidney scan, followed by an MRA scan of my renal ateries (an MRI scan with the addition of dye in the artery) which ruled out a condition called Fibromuscular Dysplasia. Then I had an ecocardiogram of my heart which showed my heart is pumping pretty damn fine and is really healthy (phew!) and wore a blood pressure monitor for 24 hours so that they could measure the full extent of the problem.

So all these tests took a year. I was back at the hospital last week to be told that they still don't know what is wrong with me or why my blood pressure is so high. The 24 hour bp monitor proved that my blood pressure is indeed high, both during the day and whilst sleeping. So the doctor started talking about making lifestyle changes, such as cutting salt out of my diet. I explained that I'd studied nutrition and hadn't been adding any salt to my diet for quite some time.

Soooooooo now I'm on blood pressure medication and have been collecting more pee-pee. Oh joy! I was told that my thyroid antibodies are high and that I may be developing an underactive thyroid but its too early to tell. The doctor went over all my symptoms again and then asked to look at my arm pits!! Hah, yeah really. I have various patches of vitiligo around my body including under my arms pits. This, along with the thyroid anitbodies made her decide to test for one last thing.... latent autoimmune diabetes in adults (or LADA). This is a very rare type 1 diabetes that can also cause the same symptoms I'm having. Because type 1 diabetes only occurs in children (apart from this rare form of it) and usually progresses very quickly (whilst this one progresses slowly) it is rarely tested for and usually overlooked.

God knows if I'll ever find out what's wrong. But the blood pressure medication has done wonders already. I am on the lowest dose, which wasn't expected to work at all, but which has brought by BP down to almost normal in under a week! Yay!

And the good news is that I haven't had a migraine for a few weeks now and currently don't feel hungover or that I've been hit by a truck!


Anonymous said...

Any results on the LADA tests?

Venus said...

Well I haven't heard anything so I suppose thats good. But I wont find out till my next appointment. However the BP tablets are working and I feel great atm.

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