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Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The diagnosis is grave......

......actually Grave's disease. Yeah, I've got Grave's disease. I told Tal yesterday when I called him after I left the endocrinologist's office, "You know, the name actually sounds worse than the disease really is!"

If you want an in-depth description about this ailment, go to www.mayoclinic.com or www.webmd.com. In a nutshell, my thyroid is overactive (hyperthyroidism). The course of treatment will be radioactive iodine. I will go to the Nuclear Medicine department at the Imaging Center, and a doctor will give me a pill to swallow that contains radioactive iodine. The iodine will be absorbed by the thyroid and the radioactive ions will kill the thyroid cells that are overactive. This will probably make me go the opposite direction - underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) which can be treated with medication to bring the thyroid levels back into balance.

Some of the indications of this treatment, according to a few websites I've read, is that I will have to avoid contact with pregnant women and small children, and stay within arm's length from everybody for no more than two hours - for 4-11 days. I won't even be able to sleep in the same bed with Tal for several days. I will have to have a separate set of tableware that I will have to wash separately, I will have to wash my clothes separate from Tal's, and I will have to flush 2-3 times after I use the bathroom and wash my hands thoroughly. This is all to minimize radioactive exposure to those around me until the iodine and radioactivity are all diminished in my body. I swear, you'd think I was exposing myself to cooties with all these precautions.

Tal asked me if the radiation is so dangerous to those around me, then how is it not dangerous to ME? I couldn't tell him, I don't know. If anyone has an explanation then SHARE, SHARE! :-)

As far as my lucky penny. Well, I guess it may be pretty lucky after all. I mean, I wasn't hurt in the car accident. I may have "diabetic neuropathy", but I don't have diabetes. I may have Grave's disease, but this is a very treatable condition, and it's not thyroid cancer which was one of the possibilities. And another stroke of luck - I got an email today that said I was the grand prize winner of the "This Old Gingerbread House" contest. Now, I won't be 100% convinced of this until tomorrow morning when they post the results to the website so I'm not telling a whole lot of folks, but I wanted to tell you guys! I just couldn't wait! Woo hoo!

So, check out the website on Wednesday- https://youroldhouse.thisoldhouse.com. Don't know when they'll post it, so watch for it!

I hope you all have a nice holiday!

-S.G.

2 high-fives:

Talmadge Gleck said...

(posted in the wrong entry)

Y'know, I've always thought you had that inner radiance.

And, you make me glow.

So this is gonna be different HOW?

PS: re the gingerbread contest, talk about burying the lead. :-)

Irvin_Family said...

I am sorry to hear that you have Graves disease. Given that you got the news before the holidays I hope you were able to enjoy yourself. You are in my prayers!