Are Women Over 50 Being Misdiagnosed?
Hundreds and thousands of women are usually the ones who have this undiagnosed condition that can lead to very serious really life-altering symptoms which is very often overlooked by your doctor.
Now read about the following symptoms carefully that will be mentioned ahead. If you have more than three of these symptoms, then you should really go to your doctor, ask about the diagnosis and ask him for the special lab work, you will get to know about.
- If you suffer from chronic fatigue that happens almost every day.
- If you have a depressed mood either diagnosed with formal depression or you are down in the dumps all the time
- If you have bone pain and you have not bumped or bruised yourself
- If you have muscle pain or your muscles are very stiff every morning and sore for no real reason.
- If you have nausea or abdominal pain that seems to happen pretty chronically.
- If you have constipation that you cannot really figure out what is causing it.
- If you have frequent urination.
- If you have mental fogginess for no real reason.
- If you have brittle bones that break with the slightest of an impact.
- If you have heart palpitations where you feel your heart skip beats for no real reason.
- If you have ever had a kidney stone that is a sign/symptom of perhaps having this condition.
- If you have a slow cognition and a decreased reaction time and you cannot figure out why you are slow to react.
- If you have heartburn all the time for no real reason or if you have been diagnosed with osteopenia or osteoporosis and not really given a reason as to why.
Now that is a lot of symptoms and a lot of women suffer from it every single day and they just think that it is a part of getting older. They also end up thinking that it is all in their head and that is quite often because their doctor told them that it is just a sign of getting older and that they should ignore it.
Not receiving a diagnosis can lead to serious medical problems. Now here is the thing. If you go to your doctor, you have routine labs checked, hopefully, your doctor checks a calcium level once a year.
Many times, that calcium level will be one-tenth of a point elevated or two-tenths of a point elevated and your doctor would not think that it is a big deal. He or She might just suggest that you get it next year. It is not a good practice and some would even consider it as malpractice.
But you can have this serious condition and the only thing that your doctor will look at in your lab work will be the slightly elevated calcium level. If you have this then you need this extra lab work that you will know the name of, by the end.
If you have any of these symptoms, your doctor may not order any of the extra tests. Be respectfully persistent and demand that they have such extra lab tests done and checked on you because if you have this diagnosis, you absolutely need to know it.
Now the diagnosis that has been mentioned above is HyperparaThyroidism. This is much more common than it should be and it is one of the most frequent diagnosis by primary care doctors and other health care providers. You can have multiple symptoms but this is usually a benign condition that you have you a parathyroid adenoma and it can be confusing because the word thyroid is in the name.
Parathyroid glands are completely different from your thyroid gland. They actually sit behind your thyroid. There are four of them and are very small but if one of them starts to act up and starts to become overactive then you can develop hyperparathyroidism.
The symptoms mentioned earlier are very subtle. Any doctor can completely scoff it off and say it is in your head and not a big deal. Hyperparathyroidism can be caused from parathyroid cancer. Eight out of ten times it is not cancer. It is just a benign tumor of one of your parathyroid glands. But the problem is about what it can lead to if it is undiagnosed. First of all you are going to be miserable from all the symptoms mentioned earlier.
This can also lead to an increased risk of having breast cancer, colon cancer, kidney cancer, kidney stones. Although this condition is uncommon in men, if a man has it it can increase his risk of prostate cancer.
So it is vital that you know if you have this diagnosis or not. It can lead to an increased risk of serious heart arrhythmia or irregular heartbeats that can lead to serious heart complications. It can increase your risk of developing many other medical conditions.
And ultimately here is the very important thing, it can decrease your life expectancy by upto six years. So if you would like to live a long time and feel great while you are living that long time then you need to know if you have this diagnosis or not. So, first of all, you should know that you can ask for a copy of your old labs from your doctor and if you are a man or a woman over the age of 40, your doctor should be checking your calcium level at least once a year.
If they have done that then you need to have a discussion about what you need to do next. So here are the labs that you need to ask for, you need to ask for an intact PTH which is for the parathyroid hormone. You also need an ionized calcium level, a fraction alkaline phosphatase level, a vitamin D 25 level checked.
In some point in the workup if any of those come back abnormal then you need either an ultrasound or a Cat scan of your parathyroid glands. If any of these are abnormal or any of the scans are abnormal and your doctor really does not seem to know what it means, then you should go refer to an Endocrinologist who is a hormone specialist.
So these are the things that you need to do immediately instead of taking them as signs of being old.
Tags: What To Do If You Have Been Misdiagnosed, Medical Misdiagnosis Cases, Misdiagnosed Mental Illness, Failure To Diagnose Or A Delay In Diagnosis