Saturday, December 8, 2012

Medical Musings

I am heading home for winter break exactly one week from today. This semester has gone by insanely fast. I say that about every semester, but this time I swear it's true. I have a bunch of essays and two take-home exams due over the next week, and then I'm DONE. Except for the truckloads of thesis and grad school stuff that needs to get done over break, but at least I won't be graded on that.

Therapy went a little better than usual yesterday, probably because I was in a little bit better of a mood and wasn't opposed to, like, using my words and talking like a grown-up person. Plus, I had some good news about my eyes for once, so we started off on a more positive note. R said that he had brought me up (anonymously) with a couple other therapists to get their opinions and perspectives on the world's most difficult patient, so maybe that helped too. I'm not sure. But for whatever reason, I didn't spend the hour pouting and sniffling away. Progress!

He also mentioned that he had spoken to the MD in his clinic, who wants to get copies of all my records and hopefully help me figure out a more comprehensive plan of action. I see tons of specialists (ophthalmologists, gastroenterologists, gynecologists, pain docs, surgeons, etc.) but no one really seems interested in the full picture. I've always felt in my gut that all my health issues have something to do with my anorexia, being amenorrheic for years, and some fucked-up hormone action—the nature of which I am fully ignorant and unqualified to determine. Being the control freak that I am, of course I've done tons of research, and have thus discovered that** (a) tear production is significantly correlated with hormones; dry eyes are super common in postmenopausal women and women on birth control. The first thing every eye doctor asks me is, "Do you get regular periods?" and then "Are you on birth control?" (b) The type of nerve pain that I have is related to connective tissue damage, which is—you guessed it—affected by hormone production.

So basically, the moral of the story is, something funky is going on with my body and I.want.answers.dammit. So I'm having all my records sent over to Dr. C and hopefully we can get a plan in place to start dealing with the root cause of everything. Not going to get my hopes up—I'm already seeing lots of very good, qualified, smart doctors and it would be silly and arrogant to assume that they've all missed something huge and major. But I still think it'll help to get a broader perspective on things, especially from someone who is fully aware of my history and current level of misery.

** Bear in mind that these are super simplified explanations because I am NOT a scientist and do not have the education or language to discuss these in detail. Most of my info comes from reading studies online and pestering my doctors. Anyone feel free to elaborate on or shoot down any of these theories.

1 comment:

  1. I had no idea that hormones could have that kind of effect on tear production and nerve pain. Yikes! I'm so glad someone is going to start looking at the whole picture of your health and trying to come up with solutions that will treat multiple things going on. I really hope Dr. C is able to figure out something that might help your whole, overall health! Good luck, fingers crossed for you!