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Marianne, Cyclic Cushing’s Bio

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I was diagnosed with Cushings in 2005 after 10 years of living the nightmare.

My first symptom was a 30 pound weight gain in 1995 over only 3 weeks.  My MD told me to go on a diet. At the time I had whooping cough and was bed-ridden and not eating anything. I thought it was my thyroid, which I had problems with since giving birth in 1983.

I was diagnosed by my endo, who soon after became my primary physician as well. It was very hard to diagnose the Cushings as it is cyclic, but finally in 2005 a dexa test finally showed up. We had tried everything at that point.

I did have pituitary scans; the first time showed a microadenoma of about 5mm in the left lobe. When he repeated the test that was gone and there was a 2mm one on the right side. That too disappeared, but at the time I was going to healing masses often.

We cannot find the cortisol producing tumor, so we just try to keep me calm and address the symptoms to make me as comfortable as possible. The ONLY symptom I do not have is the striae, but I have every other one including the lovely moon face, hump back and GASP whiskers.

Thank the Lord God above for tweezers and hair removal products!

Renee (Renee), Pituitary Bio

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pituitary-location

I am really not sure where to start! I have struggled with medical issues my entire life. I am 25 born with many anomalies–bladder, cleft lip/cleft palate, dilated aorta, hydronephrosis…the list really goes on and on. Thankfully, I have had great doctors and everything is under control until recently.

I had my first appointment with my new endocrinologist. She listened to my history that I highlighted for her and she actually took the time to *think* about me and all of my little medical issues. It was great to see her brain trying to piece things together. When she was doing my exam, she gently touched my shoulders and made a comment that my shoulders were holding a lot of weight. I said that I’ve noticed and that it makes me feel that I look like a football player. She told me that it isn’t that bad, but then asked me if I have stretch marks on my body. I told her that I do and that I’ve actually noticed that they are getting worse and deeper than usual. She looked at my belly and she said that she wants to get my checked for Cushings Syndrome.

She asked if I was on any steroids, and I am not, but I did have a pituitary cyst in 2008 that was surgically drained (specifically a Rathke’s Cleft Cyst). From what I’ve learned, whenever a doctor works near the pituitary there is a risk that hormones will be effected. This may be what is happening to me.

Last April 2012, I was also diagnosed with a pseudotumor cerebri. It is basically under control and I am on Diamox for it. These are my symptoms for why I really think I have cushings:

» Extreme weight gain

» Moodiness, irritability, or depression

» Muscle weakness– my leg muscles get tired very easily, even just walking a few blocks. It feels like I have shin splints, at times!

» Hypertension–possibly, but undetected because  of I am on meds for other heart anomalies.

» Immune suppression– a possible reason why I got pertussis (whooping cough) during the end of 2012 even after being given the vaccine

» Hirsutism–embarassing, but true

» Hypercholesterolemia–to the point that I am on a medication for it

» stretch marks

» “moon face”–it isn’t too bad, but it is noticable.

» the storage of fat on my shoulders/back

Today I got my blood tested with the dexamethasone. I don’t know how long I have to wait for results, but I am really fighting urges to call my MD immediately. I found this board because I need support. I am nervous for what my future holds because I really don’t want to have ANOTHER brain surgery, but I think all that I can do it be positive and wait. Thanks for this forum!!

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