March 28, 2006 Categories: All About Me | 12 Comments  

The nurse called late this afternoon and told me that the dopamine levels in my urine sample were high. I asked her what that meant, and she hedged and said, “The doctor will talk to you when you come in on Thursday.”

When he ordered the test, he said it was because a certain tumor on the adrenal gland can cause increased levels of adrenalin, of which there are three kinds; dopamine is one of the three.

A google search of increased dopamine levels showed three possible causes: schizophrenia (I may be a little crazy, but not that crazy), addiction to drugs like methamphetamines and cocaine (no secret habits here), and pheochromocytoma.

Some research into pheochromocytoma shows these symptoms: feelings of adrenaline surges, nausea, heart palpitations, sweating, anxiety and panic attacks, chest pain. It’s like a laundry list of everything I’ve been experiencing.

I see my doctor on Thursday, and I’m guessing the next step will be an MRI or CAT scan to see if this is what we’re dealing with. The good news is that 90% of these tumors are benign and can be removed with laproscopic surgery instead of major surgery.

I’m scared. I was really expecting this test to come back normal and I still feel kind of in shock. If you feel like praying, these are the areas I would covet your prayers in: peace of mind, that I would be able to sleep, that if this is a tumor it will be easily spotted with a CAT scan or MRI, and that it would be benign and not have spread to any other part of my body. Also pray for Kevin, my husband, who is worried and already deals with anxiety disorder.

Thank you for all of your comments and encouragement. It is such a blessing to know that in addition to my “real-life” friends, I have all of you standing with me.


  1. lady laura


    Definitely praying for you!!!

  2. hornblower

    Oh, I’m so sorry you have this worry. I hope you can reach deep in your faith to find the peace to cope with the waiting and with whatever the doc says….

    And try not to google too much – though I know how tempting it is, it may cause more anxiety than you need now. Perhaps you just need to sit and be with some people IRL and try to enjoy your days….

  3. Andrea (admin)


  4. Mama Heffalump

    Dearest Carrie, I know what you are going through. I went through agony testing… waiting… more testing… more waiting. I hate the unknown. I just wanted to know what it was so that I could “deal” with it. Once I knew what was going on… I was relieved. Not relieved that I had something going on, but relieved that it was real and that it had a name.
    Praying for God’s comfort all around you and your Kevin. *Hugs-a-bunch*

  5. Carrie K.

    Lady Laura, Hornblower, Andrea, and Mama – you ladies are all so terrific! Thank you so much for the hugs and encouragment and prayers.

  6. Karen

    Lifting you up at this very moment…

  7. carrie

    Thank you, Karen.

  8. Ron

    What Andrea said. Enter into His rest.

  9. carrie

    Ron – thanks.

  10. Randi

    Carrie, I will be praying for you and for your hubby! Remember that God holds both of you in the palm of His hand!

  11. Cindy Swanson

    Carrie, I just lifted you up in prayer. May the Lord be very real and very near to you right now!

  12. Sherry

    Carrie, I’m sure this is very scary. I’m praying for you and for your doctor(s).