Sunday, April 15, 2007

Self serving bloodwork update, for future reference

Beginning thyroid treatment Nov 05, my total cholesterol was 287, not all that bad in my grand scheme, as it had been over 400 before. It's genetic, runs in the family. In April 06, it was down to 222. It was so significant that I would have been satisfied, but Dr. Thyroid wasn't. She figured a cholesterol med should be prescribed by my GP. Yet I drug my feet because of the expense.

Last fall, Wally World put out a list of $4 prescriptions and a statin was on the list. Of course, the pill dosage they offered was only a quarter of a normal dose, so it costs $16 per month. Actually it costs $8 every two weeks because it is so popular that WallyPharm refuses to dispense the whole wad. Yeah, I just love extra trips to visit Wally.

Around the time Sad!e was sick and died, the statin was dead to me as well. I absolutely forgot about it in my nightly spillage of the pillage. Despite being back on it only about two or three weeks, when I got my bloodwork back on Friday, I learned that my total cholesterol is a mere 194. That is some significant progress - 100 points in a year and a half.

Back before I was 26 or so, before my body fell apart at age 30, before doctors gave me lupron, induced menopause, and shot up my cholesterol numbers, I remember having cholesterol numbers of 140 and 180. I'd thought that the genetic cholesterol curse had bypassed me. Ha! Maybe if I can get the cholesterol down this far, I can get that same girlish figure back, too.

Good news also that my HDL was up to 44, admirable for me because it usually hovers a good 10 points lower.

My triglycerides are down over a century, but still come in at 300. Bad, I know, but not as bad as they were.

I'll admit that I have not altered my diet for this. The only thing I've done is to begin buying whole oats bread. I get bacon on a burger, eat fries, sour cream, ice cream, whatever. Granted I don't eat out as much as I used to, but I have homemade nachos all the time. Cool, if I can eat what I want and let it all play out to my benefit. I deserve a break someplace in my life. The weight loss has stalled because of the changing thyroxine dosage (which according to the below is still not enough), but hopefully that'll be straightened out again soon.

As I'd mentioned several months ago, last time it was measured, my fasting glucose was 104, a tiny bit high, but not exceedingly. In fact, none of my doctors caught it, but I certainly did. Seroquel, my sleeping pill, and its class of drugs raises glucose and the risk of diabetes. Having been off Seroquel for two months, mine is now 88. Obviously the effect is reversible, but it still happened to me, Ms. Side Effect. I desperately want to sleep again. I desperately need more Seroquel. I desperately would need to change my strategy on it. Before I took it nightly for the blessed routine; it's really nice feeling reassured you can sleep. However, Seroquel doesn't have to be taken routinely; you can skip nights. I would consider trying it again, taking the lowest dosage, and limiting myself to four times a week or so. Now for the $180 it costs from Canada...

And on to the thyroid. Normal TSH is about 0.5 to 4.5. Some doctors do not take numbers seriously until they are out of those bounds. My psychiatrist would periodically measure my TSH - it was a lab test I used to love to run for some reason, so it always stuck out to me since. Mine used to always be 1.5 or so, right where a normal should be. Probably 2-3 years ago, it began creeping above 2, 3, 4, 5 and then I began to freak, officially learning that if it gets above 2.5 or if you have symptoms, you should be treated.

Mine got up to 5.7, then after treatment which was constantly being tweaked, it went to the 4s, then in the 2s. Last week, it was just above 3. It's gone back in the wrong direction, but that might be because when I began on bcps in Dec, she lowered my thyroxine dosage and began to titrate back up. Then I began on a different bcp (no more crankiness, no more crying!) last month and that might have done something.

Anyway, TSH of 3 isn't where it should be. It explains my fatigue and the ball-of-my-right-foot-pain-to-where-I- will-limp, as I still dally with depression, another hypothyroid side effect.

My T4 is high 13.5 (norm 4.2-11.0) and that's probably because I take thyroxine (T4), but I'm not completely sure. In May, I hope Dr. Thyroid is willing to order extra tests to see about thyroid antibodies, etc.

Some days I feel well. Some days I actually feel unencumbered by all of this. Then I am reminded of how tenuous it all is. Health is so fleeting. Especially for someone complicated like I am.

PS - The woman with the cat and the sick baby froom Saturday didn't call back yesterday; J wants to call her and I want to wait it out a bit.

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