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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Health and Doctors

As most of you know, I have health problems. I am not a very good patient because I just refuse to accept some diagnoses and take medicine that is suggested or prescribed.

I am not concerned in this post about the orthopedic problems--torn meniscus in each knee, torn rotator cuff in both shoulders, last vertebrae in my spine is sitting on bone, two herniated discs, L5 is out of place. It will take a 6-inch incision in my back and spine.  I am concerned and do want surgery, but there is no pill to pop, so they are not anything concerning this post. No, I take no pain meds because they won't give me anything strong. So, to avoid whimpering and shaking from extreme pain, I just take it easy. Oh, forgot--I almost had my right hand ripped off and ex husband refused to let me have surgery because he did not want any ugly scar on my body. Then, a bank employee smashed my hand when I reached into the drive-up window. That was never fixed.

What I do recognize:

Half my thyroid was removed because of a growth behind it, so I take thyroid replacement in order to suppress my production of thyroid hormone. The growth behind (NOT ON) my thyroid was the type that eventually becomes cancerous. So, I will readily agree to this medicine. That is one pill.

I have been taking hrt for 25 years and will until my pulse stops. I know all the risks, but I do know the benefits--no hot flashes, I can remember things, like who I am and where I am and why I started this conversation. It is called quality of life that hrt gives me. One pill.

For my GERD, I take one pill. I am grateful for this relief.  One pill.

So, I take (prescribed ) three pills each day.

I take one 1 mg melatonin for sleep, pseudoephedrine for sinus problems occasionally, and allergy tablet once in a while.

I have fibromyalgia, but there seems nothing to do for that and the chronic fatigue syndrome other than an anti-depressant, which I refuse to take. Besides, the doctor said more sleep would mean less pain. I take the melatonin for sleep!

What meds I don't need that most people my age (67) do need: high blood pressure;  blood sugar problems (no diabetes here); no heart problems; other than cataracts, I have no eye problems, no arthritis. I am not bragging, just informing for this post.

About a month ago, I quit hurting so much. I had ten times the energy but not fully restored. I remarked to exbf as I worked at things more diligently. Then, the crushing load came back down on me.

I had an epiphany last night. I saw one headline about pain and gluten. I had not had any bread for three weeks when the pain lifted because I could not get to the freezer to get out bread bought cheaply. Well, I thought there was bread in there but bought 5 loaves to put in there if and when he removed the older bread. Within a few days of resuming regular bread consumption, I was distraught with the load of pain and exhaustion I tried to carry around.

Could gluten be the problem with some of the pain in my body? the exhaustion? Hmmm I wonder why no one else mentioned the possibility? Maybe I don't have Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

During those two weeks of release from pain and exhaustion, I did have wheat, just not everyday. Maybe the chocolate in the Tasty Kake neutralized the wheat? Just being silly with that.

I could be wrong!

Your turn
Have you ever had to sort of figure out things for yourself rather than depend on a doctor to just prescribe a pill? I could be wrong, but there was some reason that I was so much better for weeks.


  1. Gluten caused me a tremendous amount of pain before I finally found a doctor who could tell me I had celiac disease. It also caused chronicle hives, edema, heartburn, throat swelling and so many other symptoms. You really should try to go without, it could change your life if that is the problem. I have seen a lot of bad doctors.

    1. Patti,
      I have had all of those! grrr

  2. Chronic hives, sigh. Hate autocorrect.

  3. They can test for celiac. It would be good to know.

    1. I already know I have a wheat allergy. The only person I know who has celiac disease is....well, a pain. I don't want to turn into Thanks for the suggestion.

  4. A test for gluten intolerance sounds good to me. I take rather more medication than I like. Some of it as an act of faith. Every second day I have a betaferon injection. It is supposed to reduce the number and severity of MS relapses. I still relapse, but am not prepared to take the risk of having more relapses and more negative effects. So I keep sticking needles into myself.
    And I am not fond of quite a lot of doctors.

  5. EC,
    I can understand your dilemma. Although some may disagree, I think that gluten intolerance or wheat allergies will not have the same adverse effects as MS. So, I would keep taking the injections, too. The doctors I love, I love. The rest that I have come across, not so much.

  6. I quite often research illnesses/cures online to "fix" myself. It usually works.


    1. Janie,
      I can understand how you would be able to figure out what is going on in your own body. You have lived in it a while. I think as long as a person reads the right sites, it is possible to figure out some things to at least be tested for.

  7. My friend's 13 year old daughter was just diagnosed with gluten intolerance after going to multiple specialists for her chronic foot pain which was to a point of almost crippling her. I can let you know how their gluten cut backs work for the girl, if you have the freedom of eating whatever you want and can cut things out it might be worth a try. Good luck from snowy and now rainy Wisconsin.

    1. Shinny,
      I was ready to give up gluten last night. I felt elated. Then, I read that eliminating gluten before the blood test will result in a false negative.Thanks.

      Daffodils are poking through the ground here and almost 70 degrees.

  8. I just become friends with a lady that has Celiacs. If you are gluten intolerant, it can affect nearly everything.

    And it's a simple test, like you just found out. Quit eating anything gluten for a couple of weeks and then eat something with gluten. If you get a reaction, that pretty much answers your question.

    My problem is that I cannot even imagine going without bread and pasta. Especially pasta.

    1. Rita,

      Remember, I did go almost completely without and felt better. When I talk to the doctor next week, I will be able to start on another no bread stint. Or, maybe it will be forever. .

      If I can get the test quickly, I will make a glutton of myself on bread and pasta, then quit when I get the . I know it is not a very good attitude, but I wonder if I could have pasta once every two weeks or something like that. ???

      Pasta forever would be difficult to hard to give up.

      And, to think I have been prescribed pain pills, anti-inflammatory, and anti-depressants. I just knew none of that would work.

    2. If you have Celiac, you will feel so much better that you don't even want gluten again. Also, eating gluten when you have Celiac also increases your risk for some cancers, so you don't want to mess with it. They make gluten free pasta and some of it is pretty good. Take Care.

    3. Patti,
      I read that about the cancer connections. Scary stuff. It is funny, but I stopped in front of the gluten-free section at the grocery story the day before I had the epiphany about the fact that gluten intolerance. I did get a good overview of what is out there.

      I had decided that eating boxed cereal was making me feel bad about six months ago. Gluten never crossed my mind. Thanks.

  9. I'm always googling my ailments, trying to figure things out myself. Mostly because I'm a constant worry-wart, impatient/need to know now, but also because I don't want to always be treated with a pill. Some things can be controlled naturally. But I do still go to the doctor and take medication when needed. I usually take my findings with me and ask lots of questions. Like my research on inflammation.. my new primary care doctor wholeheartedly agreed with my assumptions. It's ironic you blogged about this yesterday because I've been mulling over a few health things myself :-/

    1. tlc,
      My friend said that XXXX said that someone who stays up all night surfing the internet is called a hypochondriac. Love friend, huh? So, I gave up a 30-year friendship because she does not understand she insulted me and called me a hypochondriac. Tests confirm there were/are problems.

      She can no longer walk because she never questioned her doctors. Although she is confined to a wheelchair and developed end-stage renal disease, she is NOT a hypochondriac.

      I think googling information about our health is prudent. I do not read I read the Mayo Clinic site or anything with an .edu suffix.

  10. If I had had such an outstanding result, I would sure keep experimenting.


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