Newbie, questions

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2007
Newbie, questions
2
Thu, 03-04-2010 - 1:32pm
I have been experiencing strange symptoms for a year, and finally made an appointment to get my thyroid checked next week. I am wondering if I have Grave's disease. It would make everything make sense. If I don't, then I guess I am just crazy! I have been having hot flashes (I am 31), irritability,fatigue, anxiety, irregular menstrual cycles, strange patches of skin on my legs and feet, etc. The list could go on and on.
I am wondering what kinds of tests they will do when I go, and how long the results will take. After that, what do I do?
It doesn't help my comfort level that I am going to a doctor I have never been to, having moved to a new state a year ago.
I'm just wondering what to expect, and whether or not I can feel for abnormalities by feeling my neck.
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iVillage Member
Registered: 06-05-2008
Thu, 03-04-2010 - 6:38pm
In my experience, they feel your thyroid to see how it feels. (They also listen to your breathing and such - not sure why.) Mine usually check to see if my hands are steady or not (you've probably read that shaky hands are a symptom). They will probably ask what symptoms you've been having. And - a biggie - they'll draw blood to check your thyroid hormone levels. (Not sure how long it will take them to get back to you but it could be a week.) All in all, not a big deal at all. If your levels are abnormal they can put you on medication, but it takes something like 4-6 wks to start working. They continue checking you on about a monthly basis or so til they get your levels in line.
I wouldn't worry too much about the new dr in a new state thing. I'm on my 3rd endocrinologist now and I typically don't really care who it is as long as they make me feel better asap! But, having said that, if I end up w/an endo who doesn't share my views on treatment course, I would switch to a different dr. For instance, my 1st endo wanted to zap my thyroid w/radioactive iodine w/my 2nd episode of hyperthyroid, stating - it'll just keep coming back. Well, that may be but I don't want radioactive anything going into my body, potentially leading to cancer down the road! But, that's just me. I prefer the periodic bouts of medication to settle it back down.
I've never been able to feel any abnormalities in my own neck, even when I was once told that I had a bit of a goiter. Probably because I have no idea what a normal vs abnormal thyroid feels like.
Avatar for cl_calley7
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Thu, 03-04-2010 - 7:43pm

Hi Meredeth,


Welcome to our board.


At the appointment, the doctor will probably feel your neck to see if there is any swelling and sometimes they can feel nodules.

 

Calley7