Please Help... Interpret Labwork, Etc. (37 Female)
I've attached my test results.
I know these levels don't look normal, but I don't know how to put them to good use.
Could anyone help me understand and apply?
Iâ€™ve included some background info. Your feedback/guidance is most appreciated!
Iâ€™m 37 yrs old, 5â€™8â€ and 123 lbs.
About 15 yrs ago, I sought psychiatric help for my anxiety/mood swings/lethargy. Doctors threw around diagnoses like Adjust Disorder, Gen Anxiety Disorder, Major Depress Disorder and Obsess Compulsive Disorder. Honestly, I donâ€™t know who had it right. Docs had me try Clomipramine, Zoloft, Clonazepam, Lexapro, and several other drugs in search of some relief. I struggled off and on with this for a couple years until I found Wellbutrin. It wasnâ€™t the â€œcure-all,â€ but it was the only one that helped some and it was better than nothing.
(Immediate family history includes: ADHD, anxiety, depression, OCD, substance abuse, hypertension, heart disease & â€œpreâ€-diabetes)
In 2007, I got married.
My husband started emotionally/psychologically and verbally abusing me. (this continued throughout marriage)
In 2008, I developed "torticollus." (during my "late" honeymoon)
Later that year, I developed a persistent rash/acne on and under my jaw line. (it eventually went away)
Around this same time, I developed a chronic cough, which prevented sleep and caused major fatigue.
I was prescribed prednisone, albuterol, and cough syrup with codeine.
Eventually, Prilosec seemed to do the trick.
Additionally, in 2008, I started struggling again with anxiety/mood again and felt like the Wellbutrin may not be the right fit for me. Knowing that my mother and 2 of my brothers had been diagnosed with ADHD, I completed a comprehensive evaluation. I was diagnosed with ADHD. I quit taking Wellbutrin and started taking Vyvanse. It had a significantly better impact on my symptoms. I've been told that my "depression" was simply a secondary symptom of my ADHD.
In 2009, as a high school teacher, I was harassed by a male colleague and then physically assaulted by a teenage (male) student. At that same time, my husband was continuing abusive cycle.
Later that same year, I ended up in the ER for oculomotor nerve palsy (left eye).
After having MRA/MRI/CT scans, the cause was still unknown (idiopathic). ???
A 7.5mm cyst on my pineal gland was inadvertantly discovered during the scans.
(A follow-up scan showed no significant changes in the size of the cyst.)
In 2010, I divorced my husband. (GOOD MOVE!)
Post-divorce, I ramped up my fitness, nutrition and overall health.
I started teaching at the local college.
The only meds I took were Vyvanse for ADHD and Velivet (bc pills).
I finally finished my 3rd college degree.
I worked ALOT and worried constantly about finances.
I don't know why, but 8 mos. ago, I started smoking cigarettes again (I quit about 13 yrs ago).
About 4 months ago, my life changed drastically.
I became a victim of stalking.
The experience has been extremely traumatic.
I've been unable to work (since early Sept.) and I'm afraid to leave my house.
One evening, about 3 months ago, in the thick of legal proceedings, unemployment/financial stress, and major waves of fear/anxiety, I was having tremors, sobbing and feeling totally helpless. I phoned my parents. While talking to them and without realizing I was doing it, I had pulled out 1/2 of the hairs on each eyebrow. I had noticed a tendency to pull at them or my eyelashes for years before, but never this extreme. The hair-pulling has increased. Why do I do this? My other symptoms have been and continue to be: intrusive thoughts, disassociation, avoidance, hyperarousal, hypervigilance, intense fear and feelings of isolation and helplessness. My anxiety/fear increases in the evening. I struggle to fall asleep at night. I usually cry at least once/day. Occasionally, I have nightmares related to the trauma and prior abuse. I'm ultra sensitive to sounds/tv/music. My libido has decreased. I usually feel cold and periodically get a very itchy rash on my calves/shins. Never had this rash before the stalking.
Within a couple weeks of reporting the stalking, my blood pressure had increased from approx 125/85 to 162/108.
Lately, it hovers around 135/90.
In the past few weeks, Iâ€™ve felt a lot more fatigued and falling asleep has become even more difficult.
I've completed 13 CBT sessions with my therapist (including "exposure therapy") and continue going 2x/month.
My diagnosis was updated to "PTSD" a couple weeks ago. (it had been â€œacute stress disorderâ€)
Post-stalking, I was prescribed these medications: Prazosin (for hypertension), Valium (anti-anxiety), Ambien (sleep) and Buspirone (help mood)
I quit taking the Prazosin soon after I started... made me feel VERY light-headed and I almost collapsed/blacked out one evening after taking it (2 mg). I took the Valium off/on for the first month to help with tremors, intense fear/anxiety, etc.
Valiumâ€™s addiction potential scared me. I didnâ€™t want to compound my problems, so I quit taking it. I didn't feel comfortable taking Buspirone in addition to the Vyvanse and Ambien (plus my birth control pills). That seemed excessive. Maybe I'm wrong?
The Ambien is the only way I can get any half-way decent sleep.
As long as my anxiety doesnâ€™t make me feel too nauseated, I eat oftenâ€¦ especially late at night when I struggle to fall asleep and the effects of the Ambien kick in. I feel like Iâ€™m hungry often. I do make a point to eat protein at almost every meal, albeit my meals canâ€™t require much energy to cookâ€¦ I simply donâ€™t have it. So, my â€œgoodâ€ nutrition is lacking. With very little energy and a serious aversion to public places, I find it very difficult to get food from the grocery into my fridgeâ€¦ let alone have any energy to cook meals. Just yesterday, I managed a very quick stop at the grocery. Before I even left my house, my tremors came back and my anxiety was through the roof. It was all I could do to keep myself from sobbing in the parking lot as I left the grocery. I never know when I might experience another panic/anxiety attack. It depends on the day, my frame of mind and the situation. I had felt anxiety prior to this trauma, but nothing as intense/overwhelming as what I can experience now.
Writing this forum post has wiped me out! Frustrating!
If you were to ask my friends what kind of person I am (most of my life)â€¦ theyâ€™d say, â€œoutgoing, social, resilient, independent, happy, go-getter, hard-working, etcâ€
Ok, so there's my mini-Bio!
Any idea what might be going on with my body based on test results and my history?
Is this part of agingâ€¦ pre-menopause?
Result of stalking trauma?
Do I need â€œbio-identicalâ€ supplements?
I don't want to be a "walking pharmacy," I just want to feel more like "me" again.
Could it be some combination of these things or am I missing something else entirely?