June 3, 2000

Yesterday was a very frustrating and disheartening day. I had an appointment with my endocrinologist, Blonde Bimbo. My husband had taken me into the city since I had been feeling so miserable. I was walking with a cane since that was the only way I could remain in an upright position. I asked the guardian of the consultation room if my husband could join me. The guardian thought for a while and said yes. After the regulation wait of 15 to 20 minutes, we were honoured by the presence of the Blonde Bimbo. And oh my! what an honour that was! The Blonde Bimbo walked into the consultation room, took one look at my husband and the rest of the visit went straight to hell in a hand basket. I told Blondie that I had asked my husband to join us to make sure that I did not forget something that I needed to tell her. By this time, the woman should have officially changed her name to Dr. Grouch. I have seldom seen such pouting on the face of child let alone a so-called educated adult! I had done what all Internet Support Boards tell you to do which is to make a concise and to the point symptom list. I handed Blondie my symptom list. She barely glanced at it, and threw the list aside without reading it. She told me she had just gotten my thyroid numbers from my family physician and my symptoms had nothing to do with my thyroid. I actually had a fleeting moment of joy! But alas it passed very quickly.  My husband mentioned to Blondie that he had made graphs showing the constant fluctuations in my TSH, T4 and Free T3.  Before he could finish his sentence she told him that she was not interested in any graphs. Then Blondie got very rude, (basic good manners do not seem to be a requirement for Medical School) and told me that I no longer had a thyroid problem since I was on medication. She told me that I had told her I was doing much better when I had seen her on January 6th, 2000. I replied that at that time I thought I was doing better on the Cytomel but my health had been steadily declining. Blondie said that was impossible! I asked her about my <0.1 TSH and she won’t answer my question. Blondie did a physical exam after which she informed me that I had fibromyalgia. She told me that I must be depressed because that is what caused fibromyalgia.  She also mentioned that I was at the right age for depression!  She told me I had 4 options: to take cytomel, not to take cytomel, take something for deep sleep, or take Estrogen.  She told me she did not care what I took or what I did.  I told her that the cytomel caused my heart to race among other side affects. I asked her very politely if I could stop taking the cytomel and go back to taking .175 of synthroid. Her answer was “I don’t care – do what you want.”  She did not give me a prescription for any of the medications she suggested and at that point I certainly did not ask.  I tried to bring up a few of my symptoms but she refused to listen. Blondie then told me that she had had a patient who Blondie thought was psycho. Apparently after taking estrogen the patient had been okay.  Made me wonder if she was implying that she thought I was psycho.  I had finally had enough.  I told her that fibromyalgia was a label that doctors liked to give women my age when the doctors did not have the expertise to figure out what was wrong with us.  I told her that fibromyalgia was a nice long name and that the doctors hoped women my age were too stupid to pronounce it or know how to spell it.   They also expected we silly women to be impressed by the long name of the disease we were supposedly dealing with.  I told her I knew exactly what fibromyalgia implied. By diagnosing me with fibromyalgia she implied that I was a depressed hypochondriac who might even be psycho and that I as an intelligent woman refused to accept that.  She answered with, “fibromyalgia is caused by depression and thyroid problems do not cause depression.”  The Great One had spoken!!!

During the whole visit she kept mumbling about the fact that my family doctor had not written her a letter outlining his concerns and that her nurse, the guardian, had to have my lab results faxed to them that morning. When she was ready to show me out of her office I casually mentioned my high serum cortisol levels.  Blondie sat right back down on her throne when she heard this.  She wrote out requisitions for blood work to be done immediately.  I left the consultation room and sat down with her nurse while I waited for the requisitions to be filled out. In the meantime, Blondie was standing beside the nurse’s desk muttering about my family doctor and flicking through my file that was still in her hand.  Well to Blondie’s amazement guess what she pulled out – a four page letter from my family doctor.  Blondie then quickly flipped through the letter, ordered a 24 hour urine cortisol and started to walk away muttering under her breath that her nurses don’t know where to file things. That was the straw that broke the camel’s back. I stood up and said rather loudly “And where exactly do you think the nurses should have filed my doctor’s letter and lab reports if not in my file where you just found them?  Blondie alias the Grouch walked off in a huff as only those with MD behind their names can do!

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