"My Thyroid hell!"

About: Heartlands Hospital / Endocrinology

(as the patient),

Im a 26 year old male suffering with Hypothyoidism. I have now suffered for 4 years. First I was treated by my G.P. who gradually increased my Thyroxine from 50mcg to 150mcg. I had many symptoms of Hypothyroidsim but was told that it wasn’t my Thyroid disease, it was "depression/mental health issues". Even though all these "apparent" symptoms were related to my Thyroid disease.. I was thinking. If I have Thyroid disease, and I have many symptoms of an underactive Thyroid, maybe JUST MAYBE its not just a coincidence. I told me G.P. that I was still suffering and he eventually agreed to refer me to a Endocrinologist. The Endocrinologist was very refreshing telling me he could get my health back to how it was before I started suffering. I was very optimistic. He increased my meds from 175mcg upto 250mcg of Thyroxine. I was feeling better but I wasn’t feeling 100%. I went back to see him a few times with an A4 page of debilitating symptoms each time. But he said my blood test results were within "normal range". I now know this as a reference range, not in any way a "normal range". So my blood tests were apparently "normal", but my health was still not well. I asked my GP to help but he said he would only treat with the consent of a specialist. But he wouldn’t give me a second opinion, so my NHS options were over. I had read some great things on the internet about a drug named Armour and how after Thyroxine had been exhausted people, had tried this medication and became well. I spoke with a few Doctors and pharmacists and they had said they have never heard of it, and my G.P. would not prescribe it unless it was suggested by a specialist. I had told him that NHS doctors are allowed to prescribe it on a named patient basis, but even after giving my G.P. around 10 pages of FACTS to back my reasons for trialing Armour to see if my symptoms would become easier. He would not budge. So I went in search of a Doctor who was willing to treat me. I had heard many, many great things about DR Skinner, how he had given so many with Thyroid disease their lives back from the crippling disease. He wouldn’t treat on my blood tests alone, he treated on symptoms too not just blood tests. So I had made up my mind, I will go private and pay for my treatment. After getting a referral from my G.P. I went along and saw Dr Skinner. He was the first Doctor ever to take my condition seriously, he gave me a full examination and told me some new facts I never knew about Thyroid disease. He agreed to try me on a combination of Armour and Thyroxine and sent me on my way. He kept in regular contact with my G.P. to let him know what his action plan was for me, and what he had started me on. 3 months on and I feel like I did before I had Thyroid disease. After 4 years of suffering, and believe me Thyroid disease does make you suffer. It is not, as the Locum doctor told me an easily managed illness and "at least you will get free prescriptions". My G.P. is still not willing to prescribe me Armour even though, I’m feeling better and not draining the NHS of precious money. So I’m buying the Armour myself. Why then am I not being treated properly and fobbed off even though, Armour works? I know Armour costs £25 per month per patient, but Thyroxine costs £1 a month per patient. So the NHS are blatantly putting costs over patient well being. Why oh why am I not being treated properly??!! I will never know, but I will continue to fight for proper treatment. So, what have I learnt from books such as "What the doctors don’t tell you about Hypothyroidism" and websites such as www.thyroidforguysforum.co.nr and www.thyroid-disease.org.uk. That doctors shouldn’t just go by blood tests alone, they shouldn’t rule out other medications that are available, if Thyroxine isn’t working. They should, go by symptoms as well. They should take patients concerns and symptoms seriously, as they are serious to us and not just disregard our symptoms as mental health symptoms. So I have had a difficult journey over the last 4 years but I have persevered. I was lucky enough to be able to pull enough money together to go private, although, if NHS doctors were trained properly and treated Thyroid patients correctly I wouldn’t have too. Pull your finger out NHS!
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