No, Really, Treat the PROBLEM

A comment for Treat Weight First? that I did not approve, but found striking for its ability to completely misunderstand, was:

There must be some powerful drugs in that koolaid you’re drinking. You admit you are morbidly obese, you have multiple health problems directly related to obesity, yet you shun the doctors that are trying to help you and others like you to lose weight. Amazing!

I posted here before that I’ve recently been diagnosed with multiple conditions that cause fatigue, muscle loss, and weight gain.

I repeat: cause fatigue, muscle loss, and weight gain.

What I haven’t posting about is that it’s been TWO MONTHS since the test that confirmed I’m deficient in human growth hormone — and I haven’t started treatment yet.

(Why? Combine a rare condition with an expensive, injectable drug treatment and you get fun “Who’s on First?” times with the doctor, insurer, pharmacy, and the drug manufacturer. I am not thrilled to have the drug manufacturer’s help line in my cellphone contact list. On the other hand, I do have the drug manufacturer’s help line in my cellphone contact list.)

Because I try to be a good patient, I read up on this new condition.  It has fun, familiar symptoms like:

  • A higher level of body fat, especially around the waist  (Like the 30lbs I gained since my dad died? Or the 50lbs between 97 and 2001? Or, er, my entire life?)
  • Anxiety and Depression (I didn’t have a problem with anxiety until about 4 years ago. Uh…)
  • Fatigue (So, not just hypothyroid?)
  • Feelings of being isolated from other people (So…not just getting older and less patient?)
  • Greater sensitivity to heat and cold  (So… not just getting older or hypothyroid?)
  • Less muscle (lean body mass) (Yeah, my weight lifting hasn’t had results it used to, it’s harder to build muscle…)
  • Less strength, stamina and ability to exercise without taking a rest (Like how I could walk a mile a few years ago and now I need to rest after a couple blocks? YES IT’S VERY NICE TO KNOW WHY.)

And a symptom that’s very, very scary for me: hypothyroid can cause impaired memory.

So let’s go back to that “koolaid” I’m drinking. And about how weight loss is going to “help” me.  Because weight loss will obviously fix the “obesity-related” health problems I have.  Except, wait — those hormonal deficiencies are “obesity-related” in terms of “people who have this tend to be fat”, not “caused by fat”.  And they’re screwing up my life. 

  • Weight loss isn’t going to fix hormone deficiencies.
  • Weight loss drugs won’t fix hormone deficiencies.
  • Weight loss surgery won’t fix hormone deficiencies.

If I were to lose weight without treating those hormone deficiencies? My quality of life would not be improved.  FUCK THAT.  Or, to be precise I am going to continue to focus on improving my HEALTH.  Because THAT will improve my life.

(How RUDE to put MY priorities first!)

And if, in the course of improving my quality of life — things like restoring my former energy levels (horrors!) and my former stamina (eek!) and regrow my muscle mass (Aack!) and reduce my anxiety and depression (gasp!) — I may end up losing some weight?  That’s up to my body.



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10 responses to “No, Really, Treat the PROBLEM”

  1. Phyllis Jeans Avatar
    Phyllis Jeans

    That was an excellent reply. Some people just won’t keep their mouths shut. Nobody has to know all your health problems but your physician and family of you chose to tell them. And just be cause your health problems do not always show up doesn’t mean you don’t have them!

  2. noellynnefigart Avatar

    Love this.

  3. kprofou Avatar

    So if I’m understanding correctly, you’re deficient in HGH and you’re hypothyroid? Gosh, it sounds like the two conditions are so similar in their presentation, do you think they are connected?

    I’m hypothyroid and it took over a decade to get a prescription for thyroid meds because my numbers were borderline, but the symptoms were quite severe. I got a lot of weight loss as a prescription, but when I finally got a prescription, it was amazing how many things i lived with daily just vanished without me losing a pound. (I stopped having suicidal thoughts, which had been with me daily for as long as can remember, my period returned to normal, I didn’t have huge temperature flucations, etc.)

    Good luck getting your medicine. I’ve been through something similar with psoriasis meds, it takes a while to get the wheels in motion.

    1. Living 400lbs Avatar

      I am indeed diagnosed with both hypothyroid (also borderline ) and deficient in HGH. The symptoms overlap, but numbers-wise, the HGH deficiency is much worse.

      Thanks for the good wishes.

  4. lsstrout Avatar

    Gosh, those symptoms are horrible. I hope you get it sorted out soon.

  5. Sunday links, 2/1/15 | Tutus And Tiny Hats Avatar

    […] Amanda looks at the messages Tess is sending and asks how she, and the rest of us, can do better. -No, really, treat the PROBLEM. -Leah writes about […]

  6. Kathy Avatar

    Keep strong!

  7. […] the endocrinologist again to follow up on my med changes. On my way into the office, the doc asks how the meds have made me feel; I said that I […]

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