I am 45 and female. In the spring of 2004, I began to experience heat intolerence. I would, and still do, have severe flushing (purple face, feels like a sunburn), sweat rolling off my face and body, nausea, and prickly heat type tiny water blisters mostly on my lower back and shoulders. The flushing so bad, strangers have asked me, "Are you alright?" I was in great shape at 42, still wore a 2 piece bathing suit. I felt and looked 32. Jump to fall of 2005, I gained 15 pounds and was experiencing severe bloating (could pass for 6 months pregnant), constipation, swelling mainly in my hands. Had to have my wedding rings cut off and stopped wearing them. Finally went to the doctor for a bladder infection, and wanted to mention the bloating. My blood sugar was elevated. He began running blood tests, and a 24 hour urine test. All tests were negative, except for glucose still remained high. Type 2 diabetes, started medication. I didn't really fit the profile for type 2 diabetes, except for being 15 lbs overweight. No explanation for the swelling and gastro problems. Started seeing another doctor, and after having a stomach emptying test, diagnosed with gastroparesis. That didn't make sense either, because gastroparesis is usually associated with long term, uncontrolled diabetes. Mine was neither. You're also supposed to feel early satiation and have weight loss. Not me, I can eat and have no problems gaining weight. Doc just chalked it up to the diabetes. Had a colonoscopy and upper endoscomy. No problems, except I have reflux and low potassium. I just thought everyone's throat felt like mine and threw up a little in their mouths from time to time. Started me on Prilosec, Zelnorm, and a potassium supplement, then switched to Amitiza after Zelnorm was banned. Bloating and constipation some better, but even with the Zelnorm was not normal. I still have fat fingers, and another 15 pounds. I am huge, 30 pounds in 2 years. Now my blood pressure is averaging around 145/100. I was put on a diuretic, but the BP is not under control. In the doctor's office recently, my BP reading was 218/120! The nurse said that can't be right, changed the cuff, and got a better reading. I don't know if the first reading was correct or not. I have wacky blood sugar levels, due to the fact my food digests so slowly, it's hard to judge when to test after eating. The medication is working, I suppose. I have neuropathy, pin and needles sensations in my fat hands and feet, some numbness in my fingers (3rd and 4th) on my left hand. Now a weird itch on the right index finger, past the last joint and sometimes the palms. My neck is fat, round face, although the shape of my face has always been roundish. I'm thinking Cushing's. That would explain a lot, except my cortisol apparently was normal based on the one test. Also, I'm extremely weepy, I get choked up and cry during sitcoms! I forget things and names I should know, and tired a lot during the day, which is understandable, because I now have insomnia at night, and constantly thirsty. I have a ridiculous amount of strange spots and skin tags just over the last year or so, but I'm told I'm just getting older. Used to be regular, but now I haven't had a period in 3 months. Could be perimenopausal, too young for menopause. If pregnant, there better be a star rising in the east, because my husband had a vasectomy 8 years ago! Was in Walmart today, thought about buying a pregnancy test, but I was too freakin' embarrassed at my age, plus I didn't know how to hide it from my 10 and 11 year old boys! I'm no more depressed than any other fat, 45 year old woman, looking 55, feeling 65, and accustomed to being thin, healthy, and working out, until now. I feel like my doc thinks I'm a raging hypochondriac. I hate to say anything to him, for fear of another eye roll from him. Need a new doc, but no one I would want to see in my town is accepting new patients. I know all about being a strong advocate for your health when dealing with doctors. The hospital staff hated to see me coming when my father had a bone marrow transplant, and if my kids have a medical need, again I'm prepared for a fight. It's harder when it comes to myself. I get so tired of always hearing, "These things happen as we get older." or "It's diabetes related." I just want answers, because I believe all this has to be caused by some underlying condition. Any input will be greatly appreciated. Sorry for the book, but I don't get out much.
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