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Date: August 4, 2018

I took control of my health in December when I went to a doctor recommended by someone in my RWA SD group. He runs a weight loss clinic which I joined. He has more expertise in thyroid. Bang! I got on Synthriod at a dosage of 175. My original surgeons had balanced me at Synthroid at 200. In 1970. About 20 years in the drugstores had decided to switch me to Thyroxine - which had been found not to work for me. And the doctors had decided they could play with my dosage. So my weight - in spite of diet and exercise - climbed. And after my younger son's death - it really climbed, even when I was walking 4 miles a day with my dogs.

Arthritis stopped my walking on hills. And my shortness of breath climbing said hills was scary. The knee has settled (right leg shorter than the left). I began replacing the inhaler --- it was not high on my list - I was using up all the inhalers I had. I also was getting all the shots - for the 23 and 13 (whatever) versions of pneumonia, Shingles, the Flu, etc. I kept myself up-to-date. I take vitamins. Lots. I am careful about my meds - and the meds the dogs are on.

I was easing into more activity.

I lost 20 pounds the first 6 weeks. I had developed a rash at Christmas we had not identified.

Happy with the initial progress - and 70 pounds to go - Imagine my horror when on February 10th I got up and the right side of my face was drooping.

I had Bell's Palsy. Hospital ER visit. An MRI. Drugs - which includes steroids. Steroids cause you to scoop up food and shove it in your face. My diet was going to hell.

Looking back, that rash at Christmas we couldn't identify but that went away with Benadryl Anti-Itch cream - was in fact - SHINGLES. A VERY MILD CASE. None of those horrible red blisters and pain. NADA. So - December - SHINGLES - and February - BELL'S PALSY (the step after the Chicken Pox - Shingles parade.

It took 3 months for the effects of taking steroids to stop.

By now I am nuts.

But I was determined to get back on track. I need the weight down so I can have surgery for: Cataract in my left eye; the possible knee replacement for my right knee; and the vaginal prolapse and rectal floor collapse - damage from childbirth - which prompted my doctor to tell me I was a surgical challenge.

Anyway - so I decided - heart check - been 5 years. I HATE the stress test. I do not run. I have an artificial hip. I will never run again. I can't jump either. And I need to stop flinging myself out of bed. (The test was so much better this time.) And I also decided Mammogram (ugh).

OK - I need to come back for another mammogram of the left breast and an ultrasound too. I have dense breasts so - been there before. It's why I had breast reduction in the 90s. I did the redo. And --- they want a biopsy.

So the echo and stress tests were one week. The biopsy the next.


I arrived for the Echo and stress tests - and - ooops. I had Medifast for breakfast (still hugging the diet). Medifast had chocolate powder and caffeine. I knew other diet foods had caffeine. Hadn't checked Medifast.

The heart tests - look the same as 5 years ago . They laughed. I am ready for surgery, they said.

So the heart isn't causing the blood pressure to shoot from 112 to 184 - now lower due to meds.

One pill - I hung around 159 - 2 pills - wait to test.

We had to reschedule. And the slammed into the biopsy.

When I moved the heart test - I messed up the prep requirements for the biopsy. Different rules.

The biopsy was moved.

They did the biopsy. Now - the needle used in this biopsy was developed in the 1990s - and in fact, when I had breast reduction surgery to reduce my "pendulous" breasts, my doctor had me donate my breast tissue to the people beta-testing the biopsy needle.


And then we waited. And yesterday the doctor walked in and said she had the results - I said - what was it - she said positive.

I meet with a team I know nothing about on Tuesday. We will discuss options.

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