My endocrinologist appointment was today and it went exactly the way I thought it would.
“Hmmm, we need to do some more tests because these test results are three months old.”
She did say, though, that my dopamine levels were high, but not as high as she sees in people with major problems. Since my CT scan came back normal and all other levels are normal, she wants to re-run the 24-hour urine collection test (oh, joy) and do a cortisol level test that is more definitive. I can’t do the tests for two weeks though, because I have to quit taking Tylenol for that long. I’ve been taking Tylenol almost every day due to the sinusitis issues, and now I have to switch to ibuprofen. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that this doesn’t bring back the stomach yuckies that have disappeared since I quit coffee three months ago.
Which, by the way, is what she thinks the problem is. She said that most doctors don’t realize how many systems of the body caffeine affects, and how long it can take the body to get back to normal. Especially after 17 years of daily caffeine intake and quitting cold turkey. Or the reaction to the sulfa could’ve kicked my body out of whack.
But, in summary, she doesn’t think there’s anything serious wrong, and just wants to do these two tests to make sure. If these come back normal, or with dopamine levels where they were before but no higher, then she will suggest to my regular doctor that he follow his plan to put me on an anti-anxiety drug until my body gets back into balance.
Going to see a doctor in the big city (okay, I know Spokane doesn’t really qualify, but for this small-town girl it does) is definitely different than seeing my regular doctor. Our family doctor is a kind, gentle Christian man who cares about my family. He always asks how Kevin and the kids are doing. He never makes me feel like I need to hurry up cause I’m wasting his time. When he comes into the exam room, he asks me how I’m doing and then he STOPS TALKING. He listens as I explain what’s wrong, taking notes and nodding, but NEVER interrupts. He doesn’t start asking questions until he’s sure I’ve said all I needed to say. He remembers my history – he knows about the c-sections, the gall bladder surgery, the past history of reactions to meds. He asks how the homeschooling is going. He asks if I’m getting enough sleep and time for myself. He delivered three out of our four children. Kevin and I have often said we’ll have to follow him if he ever moves out of the area because we’ve never had another doctor like him.
Today’s appointment was much different. The nurse, who never bothered to introduce herself, took me back to the room and very briskly took my vitals and asked some medical history. The same medical history that I had spent 15 minutes filling out in the waiting room. She didn’t even crack a smile when I made a joke about my list of medications to avoid. She sighed as if annoyed when I asked what my blood pressure was. She then informed me the doctor would be in “shortly”.
Evidently, “shortly” has a vastly different meaning in this woman’s mind than in mine. FORTY-FIVE minutes later, the doctor came in. The doctor who I could hear chatting with her nurse outside the door for a full fifteen minutes.
This doctor was younger than me. I don’t think I’m age-biased, but when I saw that the year on her graduation certificate was 2000, I felt very, very old.
But she seemed like a competent and capable doctor and said that my doctor had ran all the same tests she would have if I had come to her first. I knew he was good! Of course, this was after taking my medical history. You remember, the one I had filled out in the waiting room and that her nurse had written down before wandering off and forgetting about me.
So now we wait for more test results, but in the meantime I feel pretty confident that I am okay. I’m still having symptoms, but they seem to be slowly getting better and that’s fine by me.
Thanks for your prayers through this whole process. I’m hoping that I won’t have any health-related posts for a while!
Have a blessed Memorial Day weekend.