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Sheena (cuddlybeena), Undiagnosed Bio

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I have had 3 blood tests one high one slightly high one normal

My endo saw me for 10 mins and said he wanted to rule in or out Cushings He has now sent me a letter stating I have not got Cushings and hopes Im happy ???

I have al the signs and symtoms of Cushings and 6 months ago was put on treatment for Hyrpothyroid which is all under control I am in a lot of pain in my legs and headaches and my speech is glitchy

before this I walked upto 5 miles a day I just want to be normal again

Should I go private and get another opinion ???

Thanks to everyone out there and to this website ūüôā

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David T (Wombat), Adrenal Bio

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adrenal-locationHi, I have been diagnosed with probable cyclical adrenal cushings. This all started after a scan on my abdomen for something unrelated revealed bilateral adrenal adenomas. When I googled adrenal adenoma everything fitted into place. I had been depressed , put weight on which were my main symptoms along with anxiety.

I was then referred to an endocrinologist in the UK who ordered some initial tests. I did Two 24hr UFC’s on consecutive days one came back at 36 and the one the day after was 91(normal below 50. Another time the normal range was 165 and the 1st one was 108 and the one the day after was 393.

I then did an overnight dexamethasone test and suppressed below 50 to 48. My endocrinologist then said he didn’t think I had cushings and said come back in six months and said it might be due to stress. I then got a second opinion and then the real testing started.

Roll forward four years and I have done about 30 – 24hr UFC’s numerous ACTH and full blood counts. renin and aldersterone, metoclopramide test, glucagon test, vassopression test, oral glucose stimultation test, day curve cortisol, spent a day in hospital walking round the ward for two hours, then eating a mixed meal and then sitting down for two hours while they tested my cortisol every hour . Did a Low Dose Dexamethasone Test and came out in a rash and my blood pressure dropped so got told I can’t do the test again. Had a bone density scan. I hIad a pituitary scan that revealed a lump inside my tongue and then had to have a whole body scan followed by a tongue biopsy(which turned out to be benign.

I have had about five CT scans on my adrenal glands and was referred to an endocrine surgeon this week who is going to perform a right adrenalectomy. The right one is 4cm in diameter.

He said looking at the scan he thinks it looks like macro nodular adrenal hyperplasia but wont know till pathology get to examine the specimen.

It’s been a long, long journey but finally looks like it’s coming to a conclusion now.

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Monika (Mokitsa), Undiagnosed Bio

2 Comments

undiagnosed3currently waiting on my test results

24 hour urine test

11 pm x3

and blood tests

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Denise H (deekay), Pituitary Bio

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I am a 45 yr old female

pituitary-glandI was dignosed with Cushing’s in April 2013 i had surgery in June 2013 to remove a tumor on my pituitary gland.

I have had some ups and downs with joint and muscle pains and emotional issues.After my 8 week check up they decreased my meds down but my levels were not normal at that time yet.   I just recently had my blood checked again and my levels were really high in the normal range so they advised me that I could stop taking my meds all together which they say is a great thing.

I had been having some of the same issues and symptoms as when i first went to doctor that  started coming up this is why i asked for blood test in first place and they are stating with meds and my own levels i am once again overproducing makes sense.  However i am not feeling well at all severe muscle pains in knees and feel like i need a crane to get out of bed from being so stiff everyday.

I feel like i am once again an emotional wreck and have issues and nobobdy seem to understand this terrible disease and what it does to your body and one’s self. ¬†I have been married 23 yrs and have 2 beautiful daughters.

I gained over 45 pounds with all this I am down about 20 so far still have a ways to go for sure.

I really  need some support with dealing with all this they say about 6-18 months to truly recover from this and feel so alone sometimes.

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Mallissa F, Undiagnosed Bio

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A Golden Oldie

Hi all:)

I am in a pickle, and i feel its time to take my head out of the sand and get this Cortisol thing sorted. So here goes.. My son is 7 – i breastfed for 2 weeks as only a tiny drop would come out and we just could not get it to work…. But 7 years on i still have white/milk like discharge from right breast, and clear from left. Mainly right breast. I informed my doctor for the last 7 years everytime i went that it was odd it was still coming out- and that i was literally tired ALL the time. I was also depressed – so i was put on medication for this, and each time i mentioned this, it was always put down to depression. Or how is your diet? etc. I grew tired of this old answer because life was good- i had nothing to be depressed about- and my lifestyle and eating habits are really good.

So the doctor ordered several blood test, a full looking over. And scan for my breasts- which were normal. But the blood test came back with high cortisol.
I do bruise easily yes, lower back pain, sever fatigue- but the doctor said bec i didnt not have the swelling etc it could not be cushings.

Next test was 24 hour urine collection and dex suppression (not sure if thats spelt right) test.

Still cortisol came back high. but prolactin was not high?

My doctor then refered me to a endo – which gave me an appointment almost 9 months away- (major shortage in endos where i lived- and i was not considered a risk)

IN this time i seperated from my partner and just got stuck into work- put my head in the sand and when i wasnt working or looking after my son i slept. Not normal.

I went back to the doctor again finally a year later – ready to sort this out- breast scan again- still fine. Blood test- cortisol still high, little higher than last two tests she said, but not alarmingly high.

I cant take any contraceptive pill etc as they make me crazy. Something is up with my hormones. I had a miscarrige 2 months ago, followed with severe abdo pain- for a month and a half. I am not one to make a fuss and very high pain tolerence so no ultra sound was given at first just antibiotics and assumption it would cure it.

I lived with it for one more month- then went to doctor again- scan done- ovary bleeding and other in wrong place- shrugged off and told come back in 8 weeks to see if on going problem.
Arhhhh

And now i have to get back into Endo and be placed in another waiting list to be seen. Because i am 28 – i think they do not see me as a person who needs help the quickest. Its just i dont carry on about my symptoms and moan- i get on with it, i have to, i am a mum- i am so frustrated now tho- something is not right.

Any advice. I dont know- any reassurance or explanation – help anything would be appreciated greatly.

I feel like i am some kind of person to the doctor who is one of those ones who is looking  for an illness. But i am looking for an answer to my symptoms.

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Leah (Lele), Undiagnosed Bio

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I am a 34 year old woman, not yet diagnosed, but suspect Cushing’s.

When I came across this website, it was like other people writing my life story.

I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism 15 years ago, with depression about the same time.  Once on thyroxine, I improved.

About 8 years ago, I started gaining weight, especially around the stomach.  Then as time passed, other symptoms appeared.  The depression was coming back worse than ever, despite increased doses of anti-depressants.  I suffered with extreme fatigue, joint and muscle pain, shortness of breath and rapid heart rate.

I had tests for Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, Fibromyalgia, Latex sensitivity, ECG and echocardigram, stress echocardiogram, chest X-ray, lots of blood tests.  The only thing abnormal was low iron.  I tried iron supplements, which do not agree with my stomach, so had to abandon.

Since then, I have pretty much struggled with further symptoms, the latest being the red stretch marks, the buffalo hump, fat on my shoulders (makes it hard to carry shoulder bags – they just slip off!), red, hot, puffy face, excess sweating, even in cooler weather, night sweats, pins and needles in arms, cramps in legs, high blood pressure, bruise easily, sores slow to heal – and that’s just the physical symptoms.

I am so depressed and low on self-confidence that hardly go out anymore, don’t have many friends, and had to stop working as nurse, which is the job I love.

I finally got my local doctor to send me to an endocrinologist in March this year. ¬†She did an ultrasound of my thyroid (showed a tiny nodule) and ordered a 1mg dex supression test. ¬†When the dex test came back negative and I went back to see her, I just cried my eyes out. ¬†She referred me to see a psychiatrist, and said she was done with me. ¬†¬†The usual – you can’t have Cushing’s, its too rare. ¬†No urine tests, nothing.

I called the Pituitary Foundation in my state who are really helpful, and gave me loads of information. The lady mentioned cyclical Cushing’s. ¬†But they can’t tell you which doctor who can help you, it is different in Australia because you need to be referred by your local doctor, and they have no idea who can diagnose Cushing’s or what tests to order. ¬†So now I have really lost hope of getting a diagnosis, it like fighting everyone all the time, just to be taken seriously.

There are days when I have no fight left in me, and wonder how bad it is going to get, will I get diabetes, heart disease?

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Jessica, Undiagnosed Bio

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First of all – I have to excuse my language – I’m Swedish, and will not always be able to find the right words.

After several years of increasing symtoms some of which worsened severely a couple of months ago, I finally found “Cushings disease” and recognised most of the symtoms. I’ve suffered from severe depression and thereafter adrenal burnout, and have explained most of my problems from this point of view. It’s “only” stress related, I’ve thought to myself.

I’ve always been slender, but gained weight using antidepressives. After ending SSRI I managed to loose weight again (I love running, and exercised a lot!) But my face stayed round and my belly stayed big. (Today BMI 21 and look 7 months pregnant)

I’m very easily bruised since several years.

I wake up several times each night and it’s often very hard for my to fall asleep again.

I get easily exhausted, mentally and physically. I’ve got lowered simultan capacity, am sensitive to impressions (sounds and vision)

My skin is very dry and thin and looks like paper on the back of my hands and on my lower legs.

My cheeks are always red, as well as the front of my neck.

I’ve always had extremely low blood pressure, and now it was high (in the lower region)

Inflammations won’t heal. I’ve had stressfractures in my left foot twice the last couple of years.

My legs always hurt.

The last two months my strength has decreased a lot!

I’m always thirsty and pee a lot.

I live extremely healthy (Exercise, eat good, hardly any sugar, exercise bodyscan/meditation, minimum of alcohol – my day ends extremely early) – all in order to manage my part time job, and my two children who are in great need of me.

And now we’ve found that my cortisol is high (urine and blood), ACTH is high and I’ve been a patient for a couple of days for several bloodtests, another urinetest and dexamethasone-test. Tomorrow I’m scheduled for an MRI, and next week I’ll see a doctor to get the results.

It seems that I’ve got Cushings – and my first feeling was a sense of relief. All this suffering all these years, and I’ve always thought that I wasn’t trying hard enough. And the explanation was that something was growing in my head that they would be able to cut away. And the tumour is almost always benign.

But having read some stories on the internet I’m suddenly scared. I realize that you are in deeper need of writing if you don’t get well, but still I’m suddenly very scared.

If anyone out there is a “success” (when it comes to getting well again) please respond. I desperately need hope.

Jessica

Britney (PandaBearHobbit), Undiagnosed BIo

2 Comments

I’m a 25 year old who’s in the middle of being tested for Cushing’s.

I have very high anxiety, hirsutism, fatigue, muscle weakness, can’t lose weight, acne, irregular periods, very high testosterone (163, normal is below 79 for women), always thirsty & pee often, ect. ¬†My doctor referred me to an endocrinologist, and I was diagnosed with PCOS. ¬†My cortisol levels were never tested. ¬†I was put on birth control & metformin and the doctors told me that would help with everything.

After being on these medications for two years and seeing little to no improvement I started to do my own research. ¬†I went to my endocrinologist and brought up the possibility of Cushing’s. ¬†She assured me that it is too rare and I am fine. ¬†I would’ve just taken her word for it, because I figured she knew what she was talking about, but my wonderful husband pushed for us to go ahead and do the tests. ¬†I’m SO glad that he did. ¬†All of the many, many tests have come back abnormal. ¬†I’ve never had so many blood, urine, & saliva tests in my life! ¬†After months of testing, my doctor said that Cushing’s is looking more and more likely.

I struggle immensly with weight loss. ¬†My mother is a personal trainer and has always been in amazing shape. ¬†She & the rest of my family told me I wasn’t doing enough to lose weight. ¬†At one point I was working out 4 hrs EVERY DAY at the gym in addition to having a very physically demanding job. ¬†I was able to lose a couple pounds, but that was it. ¬†I eat healthy, and I’m not just saying that… I really do! ¬†haha! ¬†I’m a vegetarian, eat loads of fresh fruit & veggies, & try to keep my caloric intake to about 1500 calories a day! ¬†I recently found information that a lot of exercising can actually raise my cortisol levels, which are already high. ¬†So, I’ve taken my workouts down to brisk walking for 30-45 min. ¬†Which, after years of intense working out, is weird for me. ¬†I have never been able to lose weight on my belly and face.

I really struggle with anxiety & Irritability, and I hate it. ¬†I get anxious about everything and it drives me crazy. ¬†I compete in dog agility & get so anxious before & after I go into the ring that my pulse is over 180 & I shake (Just while I’m standing there!). ¬†I love the sport so much, though, that I’d never give it up! ¬†My dogs are my life! ¬†I want to be able to compete & be able to enjoy it more, without all the intense anxiety! ¬†I lack emotional control at times, and it tears me up. ¬†I am a very loving person, and hate putting my loved ones through that. ¬†When I lose my temper, I can’t control myself. ¬†Once I come down from it, I feel aweful & can’t believe the things I said or did. ¬†I feel like a crazy person!

I often have mental fogginess & insomnia as well. ¬†Trying to focus on something is difficult, which made college a real struggle. ¬†It’s not rare for me to go through patterns of insomnia, where I can only sleep a few hours a night.

Hoping to get officially diagnosed soon, so I can move forward with treatment. ¬†I’m so eager to get all this figured out and feel “normal” again!

~~~

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Robyn N (Robyn), Adrenal Bio

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A Golden Oldie

~~~

Hi! ¬†My name is Robyn and I am a 48 year old wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt, 1st grade teacher and a recovering Cushing’s patient.

My story is so very similiar to the others on this site but because they helped me so tremendously, I felt that I needed to add my own.  Until I was 40 I was extremely healthy and extremeley thin (92-100lbs. on a 5ft. frame)  My menstrual cycle had been like clockwork.  I had normal periods every 26 days.  I had had no problem getting pregnant and was the proud mother of a daughter and a son.  I had never had PMS or pain with my periods.

This all changed around 40.  My periods started becoming very irregular, I had severe cramps, crazy PMS (my husband said it was like Linda Blair with her head spinning around), and heavy bleeding.  I was diagnosed with fibroid tumors.  Dealt with that with hormones but by the time I was 45 I had Premature Ovarian Failure and the pain had become incredible and the bleeding was almost to the hemorraging point.

I had a hysterectomy in July of 2007 (I was 45).  One month later in August of 2007) I was getting out of my bathtub, slipped and fell and broke my acetabulum (hip socket).  I spent 14 weeks non-weight bearing in bed and walking to the bathroom with a walker and in horrible pain until it was decided that I would have to have a total hip replacement.  It was another 9 months before I recovered from that.  By that time my weight had steadily increased.  I thought it was due menopause that I had gone through as a result of the hysterectomy and not being able to walk much less exercise in the last year and a half.

In December of 2008 I decided to have a tummy tuck and a breast reduction because of the weight gain.  In January of 2009, when I went for my post op appointment with my plastic surgeon, I was told that breast cancer had been found in the tissue removed in the reduction.

In March of 2009, I had a mastectomy.  At that time, the plastic surgeon started my reconstruction by putting in a tissue expander.  I had poor healing and all the incisions opened so I had the expander removed.  Since then my weight has increased dramatically.  I got the moon face, the red chest and neck, the buffalo hump and stomach that looks like you are 9 months pregnant.

During this time my primary care physician just left her practice with no forwarding address. ¬†I waited for several months to see if she would resurface in another practice and when she didn’t I had my oncologist recommend another internist. ¬†I saw her in Feb. 2010. ¬†She asked me what my biggest complaint would be and I told her it would be my weight gain in my stomach and how my face and neck looked.

My mother has Multinodular adrenal hyperplasia and I told my doctor that my mother thought I had Cushings.  She told me she thought my mother was right.  She did blood tests and called me to tell me that my cortisol levels were sky high and that she was referring me to an endocrinologist.  She also had me do a 24 hour urine test and a 1mg. dexamethasone suppression test.  Both were indicative of Cushings.  The first time I saw Dr. Rolbands he looked at me and said I was a classic Cushings case and sent me for a CT scan.  I had the scan and I had a tumor in my left adrenal gland.  I went swiftly down hill with symptoms.  The leg pain and fatigue became overwhelming.

By the time I had my surgery, I could hardly walk across the room and my blood pressure was 168/110 taking 2 blood pressure medications. ¬†I had my left adrenal gland taken out on June 29th, 2010. ¬†I am now recovering. ¬†Dr. Rolband is very pleased with my progress in 2 weeks. ¬†My blood pressure was 90/70 and took me off one medication. ¬†I have lost 6.1 lbs. and the pain in my legs had gone away. ¬†All very positive. ¬†I started weaning from the prednisone and that has not been pleasant. ¬†I went from 10 mg. to 7.5 yesterday and I had diarrhea, nausea, body aches and pains. ¬†I’m better than I was before the surgery but I’m ready to feel “normal” again.

Contact Robyn

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Grace (Grace), Undiagnosed Bio

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Hi Everyone

I suspect I may have cushing’s syndrome or disease but all I know for sure is I’m sick, I don’t know what’s wrong with me……..and I want to get better.

I just turned 25 in March but looking back i think i’ve been showing symptoms for the last 13 years.

At the age of 13 over the school holidays I gained a bunch of weight (14 kg in a month and a half) and since then my weight just keeps climbing up. I also became lethargic, depressed, unmmotivated, struggled with my concentration and continue to do so. The ¬†stretch marks followed the weight gain. ¬†I definitely have a really round face, which I guess could be moon face. My face gets really red and flushed. I have very little body hair but its quite strange that i have hair growth on the lower part of my fingers and toes. I have a significant amount of foot pain especially when I get up in the mornings. I have lower back pain too. I wouldn’t say my periods are highly ¬†irregular but they are often off from my usual 28 day cycle by about 5 to 14 days. This is becoming a more frequent occurrence. ¬†My skin is really thin, soft and doesn’t heal well. Small cuts and bruises take longer than usual to heal and almost always leave scars. I feel hungry and tired all the time.

The depression and fatigue is by far the most debilitating of all the symptoms I have suffered from. My grades in school and later on University have steadily dropped since the age of 13. I find it really hard to concentrate. It was only when I began failing in uni that my parents finally allowed me to see a doctor who was a psychiatrist in 2009.

I had an abnormal EEG showing evidence of seizures. The evidence was not sufficient enough to diagnose me with epilepsy but he called it seizure equivalent depressson. I was then put on heavy rounds of anti-depressants and anti-convulsants which kept on being adjusted. Different dosages and combinations would work for awhile then stop so that meant  more combinations, stronger drugs and higher dosages. To cut a long story short I finally quit the meds in Dec 2011 and began to see a new psychiatrist in May 2012 who ordered blood tests, a thyroid test, sleep-deprived EEG and an MRI.

My blood sugar and cholestrol is normal but heading towards the high range which worries me but not suprising given that I’m obese. The EEG again showed slight evidence of seizures but when I was referred to a neurologist he said I show no evidence of seizures and that normal people have abnormal EEGs all the time(?????) This is despite a history of epilepsy on my Dad’s side of the family. What about non-convulsive seizures-could this explain the lack of poor concentration?

The MRI came out normal, only showed that I ¬†suffer from chronic sinusitis. But then again it wasn’t done by a specialist in the diagnosis of pituitary tumours and they most definitely were not looking for one so if there is a microadenoma, its flown under the radar. The blood tests showed I have a low white blood cell count (neutrophils and monocytes). My cortisol level was normal but then again it wasn’t a 24-hour cortisol test.

From my own research I found that chronic sinusitis could be linked to the depression but my Psychiatrist seemed to be unwilling to explore these leads any further and advised me to stop researching so much online. At the same time he put me a new round of anti-depressants and anti-convulsants which left me feeling weak, tired and drained. For the first two weeks I slept all day and could barely get out of bed. I quit these too in September 2012 and since them haven’t seen any doctors but symptoms remain and its a struggle to live with them every day.

I am still financially dependent on my parents who are tired of my constant “depression” which they feel is an attitude problem so I don’t even speak about it with them any more. They feel I should just try harder. I hope to graduate from ¬†Uni this year but due to my health problems I’m ¬†3 years behind and my grades have suffered. I have health insurance which makes it very difficult to get referrals to specialists and they hardly covers pre-exisitng conditions. All treatment described above was paid for by my parents and not health insurance. They are retired now and don’t want to spend a ton of money they don’t necessarily have, looking for a phantom condition. I understand their point ¬†of view but I feel if I had a child I would do all I could to help them get better.

The more time that passes the more difficult it becomes and the more paralysed I feel. I have a part time internship at a law firm that is even becoming too much now. I can barely study. I’ve lost almost all my friends either because I isolate myself or am too tired and depressed to be there for them like a good friend should.

As of March 2013 I went to see a gynacologist about my irregular periods he ordered another thyroid test, prolactin test and a Pelvic scan so i’ll see how that goes….maybe its PCOS.

Anyway I have no one to talk to . I don’t know what to do next. I wonder if anyone else has been/is in a similar position.

Thanks for listening

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