Wednesday, December 19, 2007

More info about this last week

I've gotten a couple notes from people asking about my PS on the previous posting. Here's a bit more info to tell you about what has been going on this past week.

Please know that I did not tell many people, because I knew that Heidi and Tim needed to concentrate on the birth of their first child, and that this would only worry them. I did not want to risk them finding out about it, as I felt that depending on the results, this was something I wanted to talk to them in person about.

In short, I haven't been feeling well lately. Things that I felt stupid even complaining about (hair falling out, feeling run down, super dry skin even when I drink tons of water and am always covered in lotions and creams, gaining 10 lbs in less than 2 months while keeping to my diet and exercise regime, etc...), because in the big scheme of things, I don't feel terrible--just not myself. I am already on a low dosage of thyroid because my thyroid levels were borderline the last time I was at the dr. for my physical. Anyway, all of my symptoms are things that led me to believe that something wasn't right with my thyroid levels.

I scheduled an appointment in Hesston last Thursday and listed off my symptoms. I told the dr. at the time that I thought something was going on with my thyroid and she agreed. She felt my throat and discovered a nodule. At that point she told me that I could have a nodule because my thyroid was having to work so hard to get my thyroid in the "normal" range, or that it could mean that I have cancer. She got right to the point, which I am grateful for. I'm sure she is aware that I'm the type of person who would have gone home and done more research and ended up more scared, and on my own. This way I had a way of asking questions, etc... She called in another dr. who also felt my throat and agreed with her findings. They drew some blood for additional testing (these came back the next day that my thyroid level was within normal limits--this scared me further because in my research I found that that can be an indication of a malignant tumor). The 3 of us talked a bit, with them reassuring me that it was most likely benign, but that I definitely needed to get it checked out. I was worried that since I'm leaving tomorrow for Germany, that I wouldn't be able to get any further answers and would have to stew about it over Christmas break. As a favor, I think, they got me in with Dr. Cranston in Newton for a biopsy this last Monday.

Dr. Cranston was wonderful! He did a sonogram on my throat and was very good at answering all my questions. During the course of the examination he found that I had a larger mass than originally thought. He called it a multinodular goiter. He aspirated some fluid (using a 3 inch needle straight in my throat without any numbing agent! ouch!!! still hurting from that!) and sent it in for tests. I was told that he would try to get back to me either Tues. or Wed. depending on when the tests came back.

He called yesterday around 5:00 p.m. and told me that there were no cancer cells in the biopsy sample he took. He will be increasing my thyroid dosage to try to help regulate the goiter, and hopefully shrink it. I have another appointment in 3 weeks to monitor it, and test my thyroid levels again. I'm hoping that the synthetic thyroid will help, as I do not want to have surgery for removal and risk damaging my vocal chords. I know that is vain, but music is an important part of my life and identity.

I have been given a wondeful Christmas present this year--my health! (Actually, I've been given several wonderful Christmas gifts at this point!) Merry Christmas to all of you, and I hope that you will be blessed as I have been!


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