I am now two weeks post my diagnosis of suspected adrenal insufficiency. Here's an update.
One of the things I've been doing while bedridden with fatigue is to read forum posts on this condition, as well as joining a support group. One of the topics I ran into was that some people were having trouble with a particular generic drug (made by Qualitest). It turned out to be the one I was on, which I discovered by calling the pharmacy one morning when I mustered enough energy to pick up the phone.
I might add that, in spite of being on what should be a fairly accurate replacement dosage of hydrocortisone, I was still dead exhausted, having digestive issues, and losing a bit of weight.
I decided to try switching to Cortef brand, which is about three times as expensive as the generic, but potentially worth it. My doctor agreed to rewrite the prescription, my husband picked it up for me, and I started it a few days ago.
Unfortunately, I also came down with a cold at the same time, so it's a bit tricky to assess how that is going. So far, though, I noticed less digestive problems the first day.
Day two was a banner day. I was actually able to do a few light chores around the house (with lots of rest in between). It was noteable because I have not been able to do any for weeks. I actually wanted to start a load of laundry. I was careful not to overdo it.
Day three was not so wonderful. While I had beaten back the cold with a slight dosage increase (per suggestions from The National Adrenal Foundation) plus ample vitamin C and oil of oregano, which seems to work really well on viruses for me, I started out with my traditional post-cold headache, which I think is a migraine induced by sinus swelling. It happens every time I have a cold or sneezing due to allergies. It also makes me tired. My daughter, who lives a very long way away from us, got admitted to the hospital the night before in a lot of pain, which they weren't sure of the cause of, and my three lovely grandchildren were in the care of a friend because my son-in-law's work had him on a ship in the North Atlantic!
All of that added up to a lot of stress for me, of course.
Being new to this whole AI thing, I have no idea when I need to bump up my dosage for this kind of stress. The guidelines are clear for things like fevers, vomiting, and diahhrea, but each person has to figure out what makes them need those smaller adjustments.
I got very very weepy. I felt so badly for my daughter and her stressed out children. The youngest has autism and has a very difficult time with sudden changes of circumstance. Mommy in the hospital was very difficult for her.
Thanks to my support group, I was advised to take a small extra dose of HC. Within 30 minutes the excessive weepiness was gone. I now know that is a sign for me to watch for, a clue that I'm getting too low on cortisol.
Needless to say, the day was a wash as far as energy goes. It all went into coping with the headache, the crying, the worry about my daughter and grandchildren.
Things are better today. First of all, they finally have some direction regarding my daughter's care. Her father-in-law was able to make the rather long drive to their house to take care of the children until their dad gets home. Their dad will be home tomorrow.
My headache is no better, but I went with my husband to sit at the beach this morning anyway, my first excursion out of the house other than for doctor's appointments in weeks. It used a lot of my spoons but it was worth it.
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad