Friday, July 18, 2008

Cushing's is everywhere online these days

A possible Cushing's patient: from

I got more news from the doctor today.

Seems my super fun 24 hour urine test was not a waste of time afterall. The results showed elevated levels of cortisol, which is a sign of the Cushings disease I mentioned before. This means that some more testing is needed to either confirm or rule out the disease as the cause of my Daisy Bee Bees. I have to go in next week, late in the afternoon, and have more blood drawn. Cortisol is in high concentrations in the blood in the morning typically, and the levels drop throughout the day. So if the late afternoon draw still shows high levels of cortisol and ACTH, then it's a good bet that either my pituitary gland or adrenal glands are producing it, probably because of a non-cancerous tumor. Unfortunately, this test has to be sent out to another lab, and the results will probably not be in for another week (bringing us to roughly the 1st of August for this diagnosis).

So, what then, you might ask? (at least, I asked...)

If the levels are still high, I go have a scan to determine whether it's the adrenal glands (which sit atop your kidneys) or pituitary (in my brain) causing the dysfunction. The next step, it turns out, is surgery to remove it.

Now, y'all, I've never had anything more serious than a minor sprain and the chicken pox, so the word "surgery" is darn near terrifying. Not to mention I can't decide which gland is the lesser of two evils--BRAIN surgery, come on? There is nothing scarier. BUT, they go in through the nose, recovery is minimal, and at most I'll have a sinus headache and nasal congestion to deal with post-op, as opposed to stiches, scarring, and somewhat invasive abdominal surgery which will probably land me on my couch for a good two weeks. It's six of one, half-dozen of another if you ask me.

So that all sounds less than thrilling, right? But wait, 'cause here's the upshot:

If I do, indeed, have Cushings, and they remove the offending gland, everything is fixed for good. I mean EVERYTHING. I have an excellent chance of the Daisy Bee Bees being COMPLETELY reversed. All my hormones even out, there's no extra risks if we decide to get pregnant, to me or the baby, and I will probably have a much easier time conceiving. The signature extra weight most patients have with Cushings (the fun extra poundage that's all carried on the 'trunk' of the body) will probably fall right off. Oddly enough, having this disease will be a dream come true.

So, y'all, I need your help--send all your prayers, meditations, and karmic good thoughts my way in hopes that I DO have Cushings disease, and that I don't go crazy waiting another 10 days or so to find out.

And someone who is post-op: from


Friends - praise God, I'm home! Short recap:

Monday July 7 - emergency room visit
Tuesday July 8 - admitted to hospital
Friday July 11 - BRAIN surgery to remove tumor from pituitary gland
Wed July 16 - shocked surgeon confirms healing with MRI
Thursday July 17 - HOME!!


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