Since 2002 at age 13 my daughter had joint pain in her hips that doctors decided were "growing pains." Later they got severe enough that sometimes she would miss school because it hurt to walk. Many x-rays later, there was still no diagnosis. In the meantime, she also began having terrible menstrual cramps and irregular periods, for which she was given a low dose birth control pill, but it didn't help. By age 16 she was having large mood swings at times but was still doing well in school and had lots of friends. By age 18 she started to believe she had a mental/personality disorder and was starting to have memory loss. At age 19 she saw a psychiatrist a couple of times but would not continue going. In the meantime she had seen doctors a few times for various things but none connected the dots. At age 19 she began to suffer constant mood swings, memory loss, insomnia, and other mental symptoms, and she died by suicide. Her autopsy found chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis (Hashimoto's disease).
Now after the loss of my daughter and discovering that this thyroid disease seems to run in families, I think I probably have the answer to a severe illness I had in 2004-2005 that a GP, 2 gastroenterologists, and a neurologist could not diagnose. In fact, the GP and 1 gastroenterologist were certain it was all in my head. None of them checked my thyroid. My main symptoms were sudden weight loss (148 lbs to 121 lbs. in 3 weeks), extreme abdominal pain, diarrhea, malabsorption, panic attacks, extreme fatigue, tremors, vision changes, and changes in consciousness. For years prior to that illness, I had experienced unexplained attacks of "hypoglycemia" at least by the symptoms, night sweats, lightheadedness, and panic attacks. Doctors told me it was anxiety, and none checked my thyroid.
Although I have not had that many problems since recovering from the illness in 2005, I will be seeing an endocrinologist next month after finding out what my daughter had. It is CRIMINAL and tragic that people should suffer like this while most doctors cannot seem to make a diagnosis of a disease that is treatable!
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