My Autoimmune Disorder: Is It Connected to Epilepsy?
Let's rewind to 2018 when I found myself dealing with some thyroid troubles. At first, it all seemed pretty straightforward – my bloodwork showed irregularities, and the first endocrinologist I consulted had an answer: Graves' disease.
Getting to the bottom of my autoimmune disorder
This autoimmune disorder messes with your thyroid, leading to hyperthyroidism. Not the best news, but I figured I could manage it. The initial treatment plan included various medications, one of which was for my heart.
My pharmacist – the hero of my story – said that the heart medication I was prescribed didn't quite match up with my heart rate. This red flag prompted her to suggest a second opinion.
My autoimmune diagnosis: Hashimoto's disease
My current endocrinologist dug into the matter with his own set of bloodwork. The result? I was misdiagnosed with Graves' disease after all. Instead, I have Hashimoto's disease, a different autoimmune condition. My immune system's prime target is still my thyroid.
Connection between epilepsy and autoimmune disease?
At my next neurology appointment, I shared my newfound diagnosis with my neurologist. He explained the potential correlation between my autoimmune disorder and my epilepsy.
This conversation led to the mention of a blood test called the "Epilepsy, Autoimmune/Paraneoplastic Evaluation." Naturally, I said yes to gaining a better understanding of my current health situation.
Testing to see if there was a connection
Soon adter, I went in for my bloodwork hoping it might uncover a connection between Hashimoto's and epilepsy. Waiting for those results was tough, mostly because I had set my expectations pretty high. The idea that addressing one health issue could potentially resolve another had me feeling genuinely excited.
After some waiting, the results were in. In my case, Hashimoto's and epilepsy didn't correlate. The blood tests didn't find any autoimmune markers linking the two.
Admittedly, there was a moment of disappointment. Then I realized, at least I now had an answer to a question I hadn't even known I needed to ask. This answer, even if unexpected, guides me towards the right path for treatment. So, how did all of this affect my life?
Treating my Hashimoto's
Initially, I took medication for my thyroid to nudge it back into the normal range. But since 2019, I've been managing Hashimoto's through diet. Pregnancy prompted a temporary return to thyroid medication as a precaution. My endocrinologist wanted to ensure that my thyroid could keep up with the demands of my pregnancy. Regular bloodwork every six months keeps tabs on my thyroid's well-being.
Staying on top of my epilepsy
My epilepsy stays in check with medication and vigilant trigger avoidance. Every 3 months, I get my blood drawn to fine-tune my medication dosage. Periodic EEGs and MRIs are also part of the game plan.
I'm grateful that my duo of health conditions is under proper management, thanks to skilled physicians and that insightful pharmacist. Looking back, her intervention was a significant safety net.
Looking at the whole picture of my health
My experience really highlights how crucial it is to explore different perspectives and stand up for your well-being. So, don't lose hope – if necessary, keep hunting for answers. Remember, your health path is unique, and while what works for someone else might not fit you perfectly, it's certainly worth considering. And, having a fantastic pharmacist on your side can make all the difference.
Always remember, you are not alone.
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