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TracyS' Story...

My name is TracyS. In 2003, I started to have a verity of very disturbing health symptoms. Headaches ( a few a month), upper body weight gain, facial hair, irregular periods, to name a few. In August 2004, I went to my gyn. to see if these symptoms were hormone related. After he some tests, he found cysts on my ovaries and fibroid cysts in my uterus. He said this may have been causing my hormones to be unstable and this could explain the other problems. The solution, was for me to have a full hysterectomy. This I did, without even really questioning him….it did seem to make sense.

I recovered quickly and went on for a few months not thinking much about it… beyond taking a pill once daily for estrogen replacement….a small price to pay. However, I did not lose any weight. After a few months, all the same symptoms had returned, especially the headaches (coming more frequently). At that time I started thinking the symptoms were from the hormone replacement. So back to the doctor I went. He also believed it was from the estrogen and changed my dosage. He said hormone therapy could take a long time for my body to get used to, that I had to be patient. I believed this too and off I went! The headaches kept getting worse, the weight gain was huge, the weakness in my muscles and bones was at times debilitating. (But I would “give it time”). By now, it is late into 2005. and my son ended up with a sinus infection during his Christmas break. I thought I might have one also and made an appointment with my general doctor. She was asking about the problems I was having and when I started to describe them, she said, “Oh my, this sounds a bit like migraines or sever tension headaches. I’ll treat the sinus infection symptoms, but also give you something to relax the muscles in your neck and something for the pain. But, I’ll send you for an MRI also, just in case something else is going on.” That diagnosis for migraines did not sit well with me so I did not take the medicine for the headaches, however, I did go for the MRI. Low and behold! Within 2 days they informed me I had a 1.9cm. X 1.9cm tumor on my pituitary gland and the radiologist felt it appeared to be bleeding. With that I almost felt relief! Relief, to know I had a tumor! It sounds crazy, but that is what I thought. NOW, I can get someone to fix this.

Well, it was not that easy…I was sent to a neurologist, who looked at me, then the MRI and told me that I had “a red herring”. That the tumor was not causing these symptoms, that it was hormones, that I did in fact have migraines. He told me that 25% of the population has tumors on their pituitary glands according to the experts at time of autopsy and these usually didn’t cause any symptoms what so ever. He prescribed some Verapamill,(which is a calcium blocker for high blood pressure) and told me I should see a neurosurgeon and have a field study test and some blood work of sorts… if I wanted to and was so concerned…. I took my prescription and left with my husband almost in tears. I was so confused.

I have this bleeding tumor that doesn’t mean any thing to anyone! At this point we didn’t know what to do…I needed to sit back from this for a few days to decide what to do. Meanwhile the headaches where coming every 2-3 days and keeping me from functioning. I started the verapamill and it didn’t touch the headaches. I now wanted to find a neurosurgeon that was not connected with this doc. My oldest daughter sees an ENT for allergies and he suggested a doc in Pittsburgh. We were on it quickly. Saw him on 2/7/06. He had a whole pit study done, a field study, a cat scan, another MRI and had plans for a patrusol sinus study. I was so grateful that he was taking me seriously. He was in contact with an ENT and an Endo right away. On my second, visit he wanted another MRI to see any changes and discovered that the tumor had hemorrhaged again. Right then he admitted to the hospital to have the tumor removed. I was blown away. All this time…then boom! I’m having this tumor removed. Next day, surgery, then 3 days in ICU from withdraw from cortisol so high., temp diabetes, potassium and electrolytes all out of wack. Not to mention that wonderful catheter up my nose! I feel alot better now!

It’s been a month or so since the surgery. I don’t yet know if I am cured… I’m just glad I found you guys! I wish I had a lot sooner. But….you know what they say….better late then never! Thank you for this site and for listening!
~TracyS


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