Discussions By Condition: I cannot get a diagnosis.

I need answers!! Help me.

Posted In: I cannot get a diagnosis. 3 Replies
  • Posted By:
  • April 17, 2007
  • 09:42 PM

This is a long story.......if you can help me, I would be forever grateful. Back in April 2003, I intentionally started cutting calories (1500 per day) and started exercising. I lost 100 pounds by December that year. I now maintain my weight at 158, and I am 5'10. Towards the end of 2003, I became very depressed, started having hypoglycemia and many food intolerances. (wheat, lactose, some fruit), also intense carb cravings. I was scared of gaining weight back so I would eat alot and throw up. I soon became bulimic. I went to the doctor in May 2004 regarding food intolerances and depression. He started me on Wellbutrin and told me to stay away from the foods that didnt agree with me. After taking the medicine for 2 weeks, my hair started falling out. I immediately stopped taking it. It fell out for 6 months, then stopped. I went to see an endo in 2005, said I was producing too much insulin, so told me to eat protein with carbs, that helped. My depression was still bad so after my mom convincing me that the antidepressant didnt cause my hair loss, I started it again in April 2005, after 10 days, hair falling like crazy, again lasting 6-7 months. By now my hair is really thin. I stopped meds again.
I was having sugar cravings so bad, I would eat , throw up, take diuretics, laxatives, eat some more. I started having yeast infections monthly, right before my period, so the doctor started me on a 6 month therapy of Diflucan. After 2 months, I started having heart palpitaions and hair loss again!!! Sure enough, after reading on the internet, it is a side effect if taken for longer than normal. In August 2006, I stopped throwing up and started eating normally. I went to a dermatologist and admitted to her about my bulimia and about the meds, she did bloodwork, said it was telogen effluvium and that I needed to stop the self-abuse and it would correct itself. I told her I stopped in August 2006. My problem is I still have some shedding, my hair is deperately thin and I have scalp pain sooo bad. I sometimes feel like my scalp is on fire. I do not have dandruff, dermatitis or rashes. It just turns red in different spots and feels hot to the touch. And feels like someone is holding a match to my head. It comes and goes. Some days are worse than others. Will this ever stop and will my hair grow back?? How long should it take and could I have a vitamin deficiency?? Please help me. My email is susanpgrier@yahoo.com. Thanks.

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3 Replies:

  • If either or both of your parents have thin hair, it could be androgenetic alopecia, which is adult-onset. Google it.
    deadlysauce 67 Replies Flag this Response
  • First off, loosing 100 pounds in less than 9 months is a drastic step that probably threw your body into a disorderd state. The rule of thumb is that you should loose no more than 2 pounds per week less the individual is not intaking enough calories or overtraining themselves. This amounts to about 8 pounds per month; multipled out that is 96 per YEAR. Granted everyone has a different tolerance level however you clearly state problems began towards the end of the diet year and so we can only assume the two are directly related.Because you didn't specify how many calories you were intaking prior to this mass diet, we have no way of knowing what kind of reduction you imposed to arrive at 1500 per day. If you were intaking over 3000 calories and cut it down to half while increasing your overall work load (exercise) then it most definately could have affected your health. This is even more true if you didn't provide your body with adequate nutrition in the form of vitamins, carbohydrates, and protein. How many calories are you eating now for reference, and what percentage of them comes from what source of nutrients (fat, carbohydrates, protein)?The hypoglycemia and depression experienced was no doubt your body's reaction to your dieting- it simply could not adjust to the caloric restriction/weight loss. While it's true that psychological medications can have adverse side effects such as hair loss, but it is also true that severe dietairy changes that affect the whole body can also affect the hair. Bulimia nervosa is strongly correlated with brittle, thin hair as well as outright hair loss. It is possible that your eating disorder, coupled with the psychatric medication, aggervated the hair loss. It can also cause heart problems which probably explains your situation. Yeast infections can also be attributed to eating disorders in the form of a weakened immune system/internal dysfunction as a result of malnutrition. If you haven't already, you desparately need to consult with a licensed nutritionalist/dietition who can thoroughly examine your current food consumption, assess the severity of the damage caused by the eating disorder, and recommend specific foods or suppliments to get your health back to normal. If you have any fear that the eating disorder may return it is in your best interest to speak with a psychologist to try and deal with the problem without taking medication, however medication may be necessairy. It is essential that you don't do any more damage to your body and only seek to repair what's been done. Do not assume that your own definition of "eating normally" is sufficent nutrition for your body's needs. Only a licensed nutritionalist, after examining your profile, can determine that. Please keep us up to date with your progress, and good luck.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • To Deadlysauce: I thought about that, androgenetic alopecia, but my mom is 65 and has more hair than I and my father who was 80 when he died in 2004 only started losing hair around 65 or 70 when he became very sick with strokes, congestive heart failure and diabetes. I have 1 brother and 3 sisters all much older than me (I'm 32) and they have full heads of hair. Both dermatologists have said telogen effluvium but who knows!!! Thanks for replying though.And to "unregistered", thank you for replying and I will definitely keep posting. I probably consumed at least 3000 calories per day at my heaviest. I read on the internet to take the weight you want to be and multiply x 10 to get the proper calorie intake. So, I wanted to be 150. Which is too thin for me. I am large boned and have huge leg muscles. (I jog and bike) I weigh about 158 now and I am satisfied with that. I know that I lost it way too fast. But I did eat veggies, fruits, low fat dairy, protein, however, Iam not a big meat eater and I ate everything low fat so I am assuming I probably have a fatty acid deficiency because I didnt eat fish either. The derm. said it could take at least 2 years to get back on track. I'm just hoping I don't have to get a wig because I am so self-conscious about my hair. I didnt realize I'd have to choose between being fat and having hair. I'd rather be fat. I'm so sad and I feel like I can't be a good mother to my sons because I am so depressed, I don't want to wake up or go anywhere. i always had pretty hair and now its horrible.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
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