Tuesday, 5 July 2016

Battling With Hyperthyroidism

My last Friday's visit to my endocrinologist was a rather ecstatic one.

She showed me my latest blood test report and announced to me the good news:

I will just need to take four more pills over a period of four weeks and I won't need to see her until three or six months later!

I discovered that I had Hyperthyroidism back in March last year.

I was at my parents' place, sitting at the dining table, trying to pick up some fish with a pair of chopsticks. The tremors in my hand frustrated me and I commented to my mother casually,"My hand keep shaking."

My hands had been shaking for a number of years but I had always dismissed it as a triviality, but at times it can be irritating when some precision is required.

My elder sister heard my passing comment from her bedroom and immediately shouted,"You have Hyperthyroidism! Go see a doctor!"

From there, I knew that two other sisters had the same symptoms and were diagnosed to have Hyperthyroidism. 

I looked up 'Hyperthyroidism' on the Internet and found that I had many symptoms associated with the condition. It explained why I felt unbearably hot even with the air-conditioner switched on at full blast, why my heart raced like crazy when I was resting on a couch or bed and why I was losing weight quickly. 

I visited a GP and did a blood test and it was positively hyperthyroidism.
(March 2015 results)
The results showed that my indexes were very far from the normal range.

Subsequently, I searched for endocrinologists, specialists for thyroid, and decided on a female endocrinologist, Dr Yeoh, based on a few good reviews and her comparatively cheap consultation fee.

After three months of consistent medication, the indexes were better but they were still in the red:
(June 2015 results)
Just about every index was in the red

Sometimes I got worried as Dr Yeoh has the habit of repeating herself many times within the same session of consultation, like she has forgotten what she has said! I am not sure if it's because she has too many patients or she is genuinely forgetful. 

However, the blood test results saw improvements every four to six weeks. Gradually, my thyroid condition normalised and I was left with Graves Disease - a sub-condition of Hyperthyroidism, indicated by my poor TRAb results, to deal with.
(February 2016 results)

Subsequently, my TRAb results improved and after they had stabilised, Dr Yeoh decided that I no longer have Graves Disease.
(June 2016 results) 

I feel that not working has indeed helped me cope with and manage the condition a lot better. In Dr Yeoh's words, we need to manage the three 'S's: sleep, stress and seaweed, well. This year, I do not have to deal with work stress or get angry on a daily basis so that helps a lot. 

I hope that when I return to work, my stress level will not shoot up and affect my thyroid negatively again. Relapses for Hyperthyroidism patients are common but I hope I am one of the exceptions and don't have to be on continuous medication ever again.

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