Got a (Serious) Problem Here; Can You Provide an Opinion?
12-01-2008 02:00 PM
Got a (Serious) Problem Here; Can You Provide an Opinion?
I wanted to get your input about a health problem I am having. It has been going on for 3.5 months now and I have been discussing it on a few forums for the last 2 months. I am providing a summary of what I have posted on other forums thus far. I apologize for the length of the post, but I feel it is necessary to provide all this info. I am posting in chronological order, starting with the first post I had originally put up and underneath that, you will find my additional observations since that first post.
I am posting in the SUPPLEMENTS section, because this is where most of the intelligent people hang out and IMO this is the most relevant place anyways. Please read on and hopefully you will agree with me.
Damn, something bad happened to me, that's for sure. However, I am not certain what the hell is going on.
Basically, I get hot extremely easily and cannot cool down once I get hot. This isn't my only symptom but this is how it all started. This all began ~5 weeks ago and as the summer came to an end and weather cooled down, it got better but did not return to normal. If I am exposed to heat in any way for more than 5-10 minutes, I sweat an excessive amount and feel extremely hot. Once this happens, I cannot cool down without the A/C, even if the ambient temperature is somewhat cool. Even with the AC it is quite hard to cool down. Especially my hands and feet get hot very easily and are sometimes hot all night long, albeit only mildly.
Secondly, I am very badly inflamed, or this is how it feels. My feet always gave me problems and hurt a lot if I walk more than 10-15 minutes. I had a thread about this and received a lot of good advice. This has gotten much worse. I also have a lot of muscle weakness and find it very hard to finish my weight sessions. After weight training, I get sore as hell -much more than normal. This is actually scary; I had a leg workout and could not get out of a seating position without supporting myself with my arms. It was a hard leg workout for sure but damn, this is way way too much (CLARIFICATION; I HAVE BEEN WEIGHT TRAINING FOR OVER 15 YEARS AND UNDER NORMAL CONDITIONS, I WOULD HAVE VERY LITTLE SORENESS AFTER A WORKOUT)
I also get out of breath easily, much more so than normal. Even though I tend to have slightly high Blood Pressure, I get light headed quite easily right now. After leg presses, for example, I got pale in the face, which is the first time this has happenedin a very very long time.
I also gained some fat lately...
After I made the post above, I first suspected thyroid issues. I have had insomnia forever (really forever, almost as far back in my childhood as I can recall) and had slightly elevated Free T4 levels in some tests. So I went and had a thyroid panel done. The results were all normal and only T3 Uptake was outside of the range. Also free T4 was high but not above the upper limit of the reference range. To be absolutely and totally sure that thyroid was not the issue, I even took a low dose of anti-thyroid for 2 weeks (100 mg of Propycil) but saw no change whatsoever.
Furthermore, when I connect some other dots, I am thinking more and more that the issue has to do with vasodilation, which in turn is related to an imbalance between endorphins and adrenaline -this is my very amateur hypothesis here, so just bear with me...
Why do I think that? Well first of all, I got some Lisinopril -an ace inhibitor- during my last visit to the doctor and that helped my feet tremendously. The extreme swelling and pain in my feet went down by 75% I'd say. I was not at all expecting that but the effect has been very reliable and consistent. (FYI, the doctor was an idiot and found nothing. All we checked was my thyroid, because I refused to get more tests done; I have no insurance and that was all i could afford. I know it sucks, but this is the reality of the situation, nothing more I can do on that front now. I am not sure what he would have looked at if I had all the money. He just suggested "doing a full blood test" but did not have any theories what could be causing the issue). In addition, the Lisinopril also reduced my Blood Pressure from around 89/169 to around 80/120 (80/120 is where it has always been).
Now, based on the many conversations I had with friends and intelligent acquaintances over the last 2 years, I have reason to think that my feet swelling have been due to vasoconstriction (again, just so it does not get too confusing: feet have been hurting for a while, the heating started only 3.5 months ago and together with that the feet swelling got worse) and the fact that the swelling of my feet got worse lately, makes me think that vasoconstriction is playing a role in this most recent episode. Also, and more importantly, I am often waking up with "pins" in my arms. Whenever I sleep on an arm, it gets completely numb, which happened almost never in the past. Also, I am getting redness in my skin during weight training sessions, which too makes me think vasoconstriction. In barbell curls for example, I have to stop after 7-8 reps because my muscles will get shut down and my skin gets all red, as if the skin is about to explode. It is not exactly "a pump", but more of a lack of circulation.
The fact that it is now taking me much longer to recover from workouts is also a sign in my mind that the blood vessels are constricted. Some athletes, for example, are reporting better recovery from weight session by using viagra. Viagra of course will cause vessels to relax, which is the opposite of what I think i am having, and the pieces seem to fit in perfectly.
Now, if we for a moment assume that vasoconstriction is the issue, I can come up with two ideas as to why this might be happening. The best candidate is excess adrenaline, which I think was caused by the very stressful event in my life (a very close friend passed away), a month or so before my symptoms began. Of course, the conventional explanation is that stressful events will rise your adrenaline in the short-term and if they persist for too long, cortisol will go up. But it appears that in this case, adrenaline remains high. My sleep is very bad, and breathing is very fast. My heart rate goes up pretty quickly and then takes a long time to come down. If there is a sudden noise, for example, my heart will start beating and it can take many many minutes to return to normal. Another very important reason I think that adrenaline is off (hihg) is that my appetite is completely gone. I used to crave lots of carbs and loved food in general, but now I can barely eat. If I do not force myself to eat, I actually forget to eat. If I eat my regular portions too quickly, I feel like puking.
Now, the increase in adrenaline may not be the only cause and I say that because I also suspect that something with my endorphin system may also have been screwed up. This is not so much something new and has been going on, well pretty much since birth. I have always been extremely sensitive to light and noise, which is one of the symptoms of opiate withdrawal. Also, I have quite an exxagerated pain perception. I have been invovled with martial arts for a long time and do not consider myself a girly man as Arnold would say, but I also believe that I feel a more intense sense of pain when hit than my training partners do. The ever-lasting insomnia is another reason that makes me think I am having an endorphin problem.
That being said, both of the above theories have a weakness.
1- I had been prescribed PROPRANOLOL years ago to treat my insomnia and have tried to use it again recently. The result was the same as before: No relaxation or reduction of heart rate if I take only 1 tablet (10 mg) but when I take 2 tablets, on around day 3, I get extraordoinarily tired. Yet still at that extremely tired state, I am feeling equally hot... (earlier, when my issue was sleep, again, I saw no beenfit from 1 tab but was extremely fatgued at 2 tabs). So is the adrenaline theory out? I hope not... Maybe another beta blocker will work, no?
2- I also tried Xanax for this condition, which also had been prescirbed to me years ago for insomnia, but saw no benefit whatsoever. In fact, neither valium nor Xanax helped for sleep (in the past) and the reason I still have some of both left in my cabinet is that they did very little when I tried them for my insomnia (similarly Klonopin also had little effect. all 3 drugs do make me sleepy to varying extents, depending on how high a dose I use; but none really make me more relaxed). The doctor was amazed and after all these experiments, I am thinking that I maybe have too few opiate receptors all over my body... A very indirect piece of evidence for this hypothesis is that my Testosterone levels are off the charts. So high that in some tests it was slightly above the top number in the reference range. This is without touching any aromatase inhibitors, steroids or anything of the sort... We know that opioids play a role in LH secretion and drugs such as Naloxone can increase Testosterone. So naturally low opioid levels or lack of of opioid receptors may similarly have lead to high Testosterone.
So, what can I try next?
Before you make a suggestion let me clarify a few points:
I have never used an illegal substance and I am not saying this because I am scared that the police will read this post. I really wish to clarify that so that people who read this post do not try looking for answers in the wrong places. I understand that many opioids or items such as cocaine can make the body do bizzare things but those cannot possibly be the culprit here. I have used the benzos and other items described above but they were all prescribed by a doctor back when I had insurance and none helped me enough to justify their use for a long period. The only thing I used over the years with some consistency is Amitryptiline at a mere 10 milligrams - I would say 2-3 times a week for some part of the year. When I am able to get some sleep without it, I do not even use the A.triptiline.
I am generally in good health with the exception of the issues above. I weigh around 200 lbs but having trained with weights for over 15 years, I can confidently say that a great deal of this is muscle and my bodyfat percentage is not above 14% by any means. Not a bodybuilder in contest shape, but not a fatass either...
Please do not suggest that I should "just see a doctor" I fully realize that I should but I cannot right now. I am doing the best I can to straighten my financial situation and will see a doc as soon as I can. At this very moment, the money is just not there (no insurance either)
Please do not simply suggest that I do breathing or medidtation exercises. I am fully aware that relaxation techniques would help and I am doing some of those already. At the present moment, those alone will not solve my problem.
Thank you very much for your time
12-01-2008 03:13 PM
you may have some heart problems. Sounds kinda like atherosclerosis (plaque in the arteris) could explain high bp, swelling in the feet sounds like constricted vessels and poor venus return. i dont think its just an "imbalance" between adrenaline. This sounds like a serious heart condition. But I am no doctor or nurse or have any sort of qhalifications to diagnoss any medical condition. You might want to getyour cholesteral checked when you can afford it. Things are hard finnacialy right now for a lot of people so try to save some cash or get insurance because you could be in for some serious **** if you dont get checked up. Sounds like you couldnt even pass a cardio stress test to save yourr life.
12-01-2008 03:14 PM
sorry for any mispelling I am in a hurry
12-01-2008 03:18 PM
Addison's Disease: Adrenal Insufficiency
Addison's disease is a profound chronic adrenal failure caused by damage or disease of the adrenal gland, resulting in a deficiency of cortisol. This disease is sometimes called chronic adrenal insufficiency or hypocortisolism. The most important job of cortisol is to help the body respond to stress. Among its other vital tasks, cortisol is partly responsible for:
Maintaining blood pressure and cardiovascular function
Balancing the effects of insulin in breaking down sugar for energy
Slowing the immune system's inflammatory response
Regulating the metabolism of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats
Addison's disease is characterized by muscle weakness, reduced blood sugar, nausea, loss of appetite, weight loss, and low blood pressure, which can impact the act of standing, causing dizziness or fainting. Skin changes also are common in Addison's disease, with areas of hyperpigmentation or dark tanning that are mostly visible on scars, skin folds, toes, lips, mucous membranes, and pressure points, such as the elbows, knees, and knuckles
12-01-2008 03:24 PM
maybe high cortisol levels. would explain the swelling and some other things
12-01-2008 07:18 PM
I very respectfully say that I really don't think it is Addison. A close friend of mine has that disorder and the symptoms in Addison are often the exact opposite of what I am having. Especially the racing pulse and elevated B.Pressure in my case make Addison very unlikely. Also, people with Addison tend to sleep a lot and not be able to get out of bed in the morning due to crashing brain glucose levels; I have the exact opposite of those as well.
Originally Posted by jsp0785
I think high Cortisol is a better candidate -just my opinion
Thanks much Ladies and Gentlemen
12-02-2008 10:51 AM
12-02-2008 11:42 AM
Aren't there free hospitals in the US for people without insurance? Sure looks like there are in shows like ER but also they look crummy compared to ones supporting insurance.
12-02-2008 01:00 PM
Well, if it were an adrenaline problem, the beta blocker would help becuase they block epinephrine from binding to the receptor. To me, this sounds like CHF, but I am no doctor. As far as some of your hypothesis, although possible, I'd say extremely rare. I've never heard of someone having too few opiate receptors. Most hospitals will work out a payment plan with you if you're hurting financially, and honestly I'd suggest you go to an emergency room immediately. The symptoms you describe: edema, weakness, flushing, rapid heart beat, ect sound pretty serious, I wouldn't dismiss them as a one in a million type of ailment. JMO.
12-02-2008 04:26 PM
hahahaha free hospitals in the US. great joke man
Originally Posted by eatingisfun
12-03-2008 12:17 AM
CHF(sob), arrythymia, endocrine dysfuntion, renal artery stenosis (causes hbp), pulmonary hypertension (hbp,lightheadedness, fluid build-up)...you have so many symptoms sub7. It's your life. Find a great doc!
12-03-2008 12:36 AM
I know you said don't tell you to just see a doctor, but you need to. Even if you're in a financial hell right now, your health is not something to mess with, and all these things you describe sound fairly serious. Please, take care of yourself.
Most medical institutions offer financial aid, Payment plans, discount for no insurance, ect. You most likely have options you don't even know about. I would suggest you call up a medical provider in your area and see if you can speak with a financial councelor about your situation if you have trouble paying bills.
You may not be able to "afford" it now, but if this developes into something even more serious or you arn't even around later, it won't matter that money was an issue.
I hope your situation improves man.
12-03-2008 01:26 PM
Originally Posted by LilPsychotic
1- I also have and always had some anxiety in public speeches and tried to utilize the propranolol for that purpose as well -long before these problems came up. Propranolol had no effect on public speaking performance either. So it may not be as simple as "prop. renders adrenaline ineffective". It is designed for that and is supposed to do that, but it may not do as expected -same as with many other drugs. I won't go into the many reasons drug act funny sometimes because I am sure you know those better than me, but I wanted to indicate one instance where propranolol failed to work for me. So maybe another beta blocker would make things better
2- CHF refers to chronic heart failure I guess? I forgot to mention one key fact: When I was at the doctor's office, I got an electrocardiogram (Spelling? LOL)
That is not sufficient to diagnose the problem I guess, but it looked pretty normal.
12-03-2008 09:20 PM
I feel for you man. It sucks not to have health insurance in the US. You might be able to find some affordable alternatives in the form of cheap clinics that can at least run a few basic tests and then more importantly, refer you for further blood tests etc... Not quite the same thing as seeing the top cardiologist in town but I think that it would be better than posting & hoping for a detailed diagnosis.
That said, what's the family medical history? Any hypertension? Diabetes? Other fun stuff?
12-03-2008 10:18 PM
Originally Posted by Sub7
Pay particular attention to the signs and symptoms portion. It almost describes you to a T. Its just a shot in the dark, but that is what came to mind when you described your symptoms.
12-04-2008 01:22 AM
Originally Posted by eatingisfun
The hospitals are not free, however, they are required by law to treat you if you have a serious condition. There are request forms you can fill out to get financial aid from the government if you are unable to pay. I don't mean to use a petty situation, but my mother works in E.R. registration at a very highly populated and large hospital. She has to help people fill out this paperwork all the time... so it is possible to get health care like this if you actually need it and do have the funds.
Of course, if you can possibly pay for it, it is much more noble to do so... but man, if your health is at serious risk, IMO, there is no shame in going and getting checked out and applying for aid.
12-04-2008 01:30 AM
12-04-2008 01:32 AM
You're condition is serious, I don't know what it is or can provide any help but I will say that I have some similar problems.
The problems I have that are similar to yours are the getting hot very easily and excessive sweating and the tired feeling and getting out of breath much faster than normal. Its cold winter where I live already and just going up 3 flights of stairs I break a sweat.
Its really embarrassing and uncomfortable as far as the sweating goes and it definitely doesn't seem normal to sweat so much and so easily. When I get out of breath right in the beginning of my workout or other simple tasks I get scared and think its linked to my heart. I wasnt like this before, ive had this for about over 1 year.
I was going to get a cardiogram to check my heart but my general doctor thought I didn't need it at the time and that was 4 months ago.
12-04-2008 01:39 AM
IF your body is too acidic you will have
1) elevated BP
2) flush hot skin
3) Gastic discomfort, gas, pain, diahreah and sometimes vomitting or a burning anus
4) pale skin blothchy and red in spots
5) eczema, dry scalp, dandruff, scoriasis and slow healing wounds
6) dark, smelly urine, dark feces
7) Bloating and slow digestion as well as impaired healing and energy storage.
8) delayed onset muscle soreness esp after excercise
9)Accumulation of pain and acid in the weak points of your body ie. feet, back, arms...
10) congestion, shortness of breath and chronic hearburn feeling in sternum area.
11) dramtically decreased cardiovascular performance, inability to catch your breath easily.
12) fat gain/ muscle loss
13) premature hairloss, accelerated hairloss
14) loss of muscle tone, fullness
15) weakened immune system and irritability
These are some of the symptoms of an acidic body. We are largely made of water and when our PH is off it can impair every function of the body and result in cancer or death.
You may experience more symptoms after a workout due to the increase of cortisol and lactic acids making your body more acidic for your effort.
Fat buffers acid so typically weight gain and muscle loss/ lack of strength come with an acidic body.
The delicate intestinal flora cannot survive in a acidic environment and digestion suffers. you have the chronic feeling of hunger most times and a lack of appetite when you consume certain food items as you can become gassy right afterwards.
You need alot more sleep....... and are always tired..... energy drinks dont help becasue they make you more acidic in the long term.
I may be waaay off but i see it everywhere as most illnesses and problems are nutrition related, you are malnutritioned and acidic that is my 2cents.
P.S emotions can cause the body to become very acidic. Typically people who are very stressed, nervous and angry are the most acidic. If you are thin you are at a higher risk because fat buffers acid and slim people dont have that luxury.
12-04-2008 01:48 AM
If the above post sounds like you here is an action plan.
1) read about the acid alkaline diet.
2) eat more water bearing fruit and vegetables
3) eat less animal protein, less prescrip meds, coffee, pop, sugar and tobacco and alcohol products.
4) drink more water, stretch and laugh to lower stress levels.
5) carefully monotor how foods make you feel, for me dairy (animal protein) bloated me made me tired almost immediately and i limited it totally until i was more alkaline and now have it with low incidence. I suspect you have alot of these foods.
6) pesticides, herbicides and pollution can be in your food go organic if you can. if not wash it thouroughly.
As a weightlifter animal protein is a huge part of your life, but if you are as acidic as i think you are it will either give you cancer to where you are genetically most vunerable or make you live miserable until some other disease takes hold over your weakened immune system.
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