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Old 11-03-2013, 08:55 AM   #1
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ordering my own tests?

Hey all -
I have Hashimoto's. Untreated as of yet due to a series of really crappy doctors who either have problems returning calls, haven't ordered the right tests, or who don't seem to give a crap.
I have had a serious uptick in symptoms recently, though, and am going to see someone new in about 2 weeks. I am very, very hopeful she will help me out. She came personally recommended by someone I know who's had thyroid cancer and who is prescribed Armour through this NP. It'll be an hour visit. Please wish me luck!
I'm wondering if it makes sense, though, for me to try to get testing ahead of time? I am feeling really crappy these days. Totally exhausted. Stupid. Lots of achiness. If I do anything physical - walk my dogs, work in my garden, etc. I am a waste the rest of the day. I'd love to go into the appt. with my bloodwork done.
Is there anywhere I can order this myself? I will pay out of pocket. I am pretty desperate. I have lab work from earlier this year - Feb. and again in June, but the 2 different doctors didn't order the same tests and neither of them did all the tests suggested in the sticky on this page.
Oh, help. I feel like poo. I'm also angry with myself that I've let it go on this long!
A
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Old 11-03-2013, 09:58 AM   #2
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In your situation, I'd contact the new doctor's office and ask about ordering labs in advance. You don't want to pay out of pocket and then have the doctor want his/her own tests anyway. In addition, you won't have to 'guess' about what to order, and if you have insurance, they'll be covered.

For example, when I first went to my current endo, the practice was to draw your blood at the time of the visit, and the doctor evaluated them later.

To me, that was a waste of a visit because I wanted to be able to discuss the latest labs with the doctor (rather than simply report symptoms and have him do nothing until he saw lab results), so I suggested that I come in for the blood draw the week before each check up. He not only agreed that was a good idea, but it's been working well for us for the past 5 years.
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Old 11-05-2013, 07:57 AM   #3
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Just called and they said no, no tests ahead of time.

I explained that I already had the dx. and I thought the NP would order standard tests but the front desk was adamant that they don't do this.

Once I see her I will suggest advance blood tests for future visits, like the system you describe. They do bloodwork there, at least, so I won't have to go somewhere else. I am hoping I like her and feel like she'll listen to me. I'm at kind of a low point physically and mentally and I am worried she'll say I'm depressed, etc. like several other people have suggested. I am not depressed when I don't feel exhausted and achy and stupid. I am not sad. I'm frustrated b/c I have a lot going on - a lot of projects I'm really passionate about - and some days I don't have the brain power to get through what I need to.

It's just frustrating because I am feeling intensely awful and I'm really mad at myself for not making an appt earlier. This summer I thought I found a dr. I could work with but she did tests, gave me no instructions, then just sent the tests to me with normal circled except for the antibodies. So no feedback about my symptoms, and it turns out the tests she ordered were just TSH, ft3, and ft4 and antibodies. Is that enough? I told her I am chronically low on D and B12 and she didn't test them. She also said she'd call to discuss the results and she didn't. I'm really tired of doctors who don't follow through, but apparently that's the rule vs. the exception and I need to get used to it.

Anyway, same old story that everyone tells. I guess I'll just wait and wait and wait.
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Old 11-05-2013, 08:45 AM   #4
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That's too bad. In my experience, the 'front desk people' are a problem in most of my doctors' offices.

As for being 'depressed,' low thyroid and/or Vit. D can mimic clinical depression. In fact, many women are prescribed anti-depressants because they are actually hypothyroid, but there lab values seem 'normal.' So beware of any doctor who tells you that you're just depressed.

I had trouble getting diagnosed (I have Hashi's) because my lab values didn't seem to indicate a problem. It was only when I self-referred to an excellent endo that I discovered that is very common--and a good endo knows how to diagnose on labs AND symptoms.
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