PCOS/Insulin Resistance Support Support for us with any of the following: Insulin Resistance, Syndrome X, Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, or other endocrine disorders.

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Old 06-01-2004, 10:57 PM   #1  
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Default PCOS Monthly Chat - June 2004

June is here! May went by incredibly fast. Maybe because I have surgery scheduled for tomorrow, and dreading always makes time fly.

Anonymouse - I understand your being nervous about the surgery and the recovery time. If it makes you feel any better, your endocrinologist couldn't help you with the surgery even if you did have it in town unless she is a plastic surgeon, which probably isn't the case. They are the only doctors that work in reconstructive surgery. You will only need to 'lay around' for about 2 weeks. I think most people go back to work in 2-4 weeks depending on how extensive the surgery is. I was out 6 weeks, but I had a hysterectomy at the same time. If you had your mother with you for 2 weeks, that would probably be plenty. If I had the tuck alone then I could answer your questions better, but my recovery and pain was more extensive due to the other surgery involved. I won't lie to you, it DID hurt, but nothing that I couldn't live through! I'd get it done again if I needed it. The difference was worth it.

Have you had complications with your sagging skin? If you don't have infections or sores, you might not get it approved by insurance. I had to pay for mine. The costs were cut since I shared it with the hysterectomy, so that helped. Go to www.tuckthattummy.com and read their pages. That's a page that MrsJim suggested I read when I had some questions about the procedure. It has a load of info!
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Old 06-01-2004, 11:24 PM   #2  
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Anonymouse - Read this thread - it has a lot of good information.

http://www.3fatchicks.com/forum/showthread.php?t=36040
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Old 06-02-2004, 11:22 PM   #3  
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[italics]Okay...this is WAYYYYYY long winded. I'm sorry. I rattle when I'm sleepy, and I started classes tonight for my eventual-doctorate. So, I was gone from 6:20 am to 10:15 pm.[/italics]

Thanks, Jennifer. The plastic surgeon doesn't think there will be any problems getting it approved given that I can't handle the medication that is required to make both my insulin and other hormones balance. I have literally been unable to eat solid food except at home for the last 2-3 weeks because I get very nauseated and sick or throw-up. This is very worrying to my endocrinologist because I need the contraceptives for the hormones (I don't make them), and the spirolactone to get rid of the testosterone. My endocrinologist checked all of my blood work again last week to make sure it wasn't blood sugar or something else, but that is all good... better than it has been in the past, better than it was in december when she last checked.
She (and I) were worried it was high blood sugar because I felt a lot better after exercising. The thing that bites (and this is like the glucophage), I've lost very little if any weight despite not eating and exercising (I'm still going to the gym and swimming because it makes me feel better and if I don't, I usually can't keep anything down at all).
My endocrinologist wouldn't be able to do the surgery, but I have a feeling that if I asked her, she'd be there. And of course, I still have issues with some pain on the right side, but they cant find anything, so during that surgery would have been an excellent time to look. The surgeon is board-certified, and was sensitive to my feelings. She asked about rashes or skin issues as well, but I don't have either.
The surgeon told me 6 weeks... 2 days in the hospital. My mom can't stay for 2 weeks: my grandmother lives with her and while independent, doesn't drive anymore. Also, I have a studio apartment. My mom is going to sleep on the air mattress that I use for friends... I have somebody in my building who is going to help me out, and some local friends who have made me promise that I'll ask for help. I'm really bad about that.
I have most of the information from the first website that you posted. My procedure is a bit different, but I admit that some of the pictures on that site scared me just now. I've never had any kind of surgery at all before... I think the closest I've come is
the procedures on my ankle, and I dealt with the pain because I refused to let them put me to sleep. That was an option... I chickened out the day of the first procedure.
I found out about the procedure from the link you posted in the thread.
I'm also scared of being out of my classroom for so long at the beginning of the year. Even if I could go back to work in 2 weeks, I'm not sure that working with students that I work with would be a good idea. When I had the cast on, I was promised that I'd ALWAYS have another adult in my room with me so I could keep teaching. But that never materialized so when my assistant was out for 2 weeks, I was by myself for most periods. Reality is that this is what would happen if I went back: and I think that is a bad idea.
I need to have it done because I can't continue not eating... and that is what is happening because of the medication. I've lost 50 pounds since October, but NONE of the pannus has gone away. EVerywhere else you can see muscle (from the weight lifting I've been doing in the pool, water aerboics and lap swimming), but that piece hangs.
I could wear smaller pants, or non-knit pants because the WAIST fits, but the hanging off part won't allow it... so I nearly need suspenders at this point to keep up my pants because they are way too big. I look like some of my inner city male students with
my pants hanging down.
So I'm not sure that I have much point anymore. We've tried the medication for 3 years, plus all the diet changes and exercise. It didn't start to work at all for loss until they added the spirolactone in August... Although I was able to stabilize it and keep myself from gaining more.
Frankly, I am also very tired of the discrimination and snide comments from the other supposed adults that I work with: the new dress code on no short skirts or sleeveless tops earned me,"Well, guess you'll NEVER need to worry about that!", comments during lunches or meals or food-based activities,"should you really be eating that? Do you think you NEED that?" And the whole issue with them trying to fire me because I "smelled". Does anybody think that would have happened if I weren't obviously overweight? My administrators know about the surgery, and at least 2 of them have already assumed that I'm going to have a gastric-bypass.

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Old 06-03-2004, 09:16 AM   #4  
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Anonymouse--I've missed something big while I've been gone. I hope you are Okay and I will go back thru the other threads to see what I missed. A big hug!

Now, this is what I've been up to lately....

STARTROOPERS, CAPTAIN KIRK, AND WHIPS

The Thundercats were smoking cigars.

Captain Kirk had been shrunk (no doubt by some vile alien laser) to a height of 12" and had to be carried around by one of his crewmates. Predictably, the crew spent their time in the bar and on the dance floor as opposed to rescuing their fearless leader. I suspect Kirk will be stuck in the form of a plastic doll for a long time.

There were battalions of Startroopers patrolling the halls and enforcing peace.

And I even saw a few members of Scooby Doo. I think they must have solved the mystery as I only saw them for a few minutes. Or perhaps Pan kidnaped them.

Confused?

What the **** am I talking about?

Why Marcon of course!

I went to my first ever Sci Fi/ Fantasy convention this weekend and had a blast.

The diversity of the participants was amazing. There were attendees of all ages, from little old ladies in housecoats calling themselves ďMartianĒ to young kids dressed as squires. There was something for everyone, particularly anyone with a kink in their tail.

It was quite an eye opener.

The people watching was just amazing. There were several attendees into S&M.

I counted three people on leashes and one person with their hands publicly restrained. Vinyl, spandex, and leather were popular materials for scanty, barely there outfits. One woman simply wore lingerie complete with garters.

I spoke to a gentleman who was into whips and what not. He gave me an in-depth tour of all the whips he had with him, but unfortunately it was one in the morning and I was very tired and canít remember a word he said. He seemed very nice though, but when he mentioned he was into public sceneing (which I gather would involve whipping a partner in public) and paused waiting for my friend or I to express interest, I felt the need to decline. It was an interesting offer and a new one for me.

Did I mention I was dressed as a zombie wench at the time? There was a costume ball the second night and my friend and I decided to take our renaissance faire costumes to the next level and go as the walking dead.

Apparently if you make me up to look like Iím dead and put a somewhat low-cut blouse on me, Iím hot. Youíve heard the saying jail bait? Well I guess Iím grave bait. It was interesting to see how many men felt the need to hit on me. It didnít last long though, as once they saw my friend, I was dropped like a hot potato as my friend is gorgeous. I wish I could say my wedding ring had a similar effect, but it didnít. Needless to say, there were a few men we hid from during the conference as they didnít seem to understand we would not be going out with them, no we were not sisters, and yes, a menage-a-trois was definitely out of the question.

With respect to the wedding ring, I have never been so glad in my life to wear it. It was shocking how many guys thought fidelity was optional.

One guy asked us both out to dinner and when I said I couldnít as I was married, his response was, ďAnd thatís a problem because?Ē

Now, let me clarify, this was not some innocent letís go out and be friends. This was an ĎI want to get into your pantsí kind of thing. (My husband, upon hearing the story, said I shouldíve accepted the invite for the free food.)

Then there was the truck driver, with no teeth, who felt the need to share with me that he was so lonely he paid women $100 to keep him Ďcompanyí at truck stops and no sex, just Ďcompanyí. Yeah right and Iím a size 0 supermodel (and remember I have to put on makeup to make myself look like Iím dead to go up on the hot chick meter.)

So as the weekend wore on, I became happier and happier that I did not go to Marcon by myself. It wouldíve been just too weird.

As interesting as the people watching and as weird as some of the guys were, I was at Marcon in a professional capacity. There were a series of lectures by publishing pros for wanna be writers.

Maureen McHugh (Hugo award winning author) was on several panels as was Ellen Datlow (Hugo award winning editor of scifi/fantasy), Paul Stevens from Tor, Cecilia Tan from Circlet Press, and Julie Czernada (author and editor).

They were all very kind and generous with their time. I have a lot of respect for them after watching how patiently they answered the same questions over and over. I imagine there must be times they wished they could just send a video of themselves to the conference or play a tapeĖ-it must be mind-numbingly boring after awhile for them.

I learned a lot from their lectures. Mostly that Iím on the right track, I just need to be networking and making contacts to facilitate publishing anything I write. I also need to find a really good writing group and I want to attend a writing workshop later this summer.

It was reassuring to know that, on the business end of things, I know what I am doing. I just need to hone the writing and get something ready to submit.
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Old 06-03-2004, 08:19 PM   #5  
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I think I might have posted about the surgery in the May thread... I'm not at all sure, Violet. About 2 weeks ago, I was evaluated by a plastic surgeon to have the pannus that was created by the weight gain from the endocrine disorder removed. I've had serious issues the last few weeks tolerating the medication (its happened before, but never this bad... usually I go off it a few days and it goes away, and then I can safely take the meds again for several months). I've been off the spirolactone for a week now, and I still can't/don't want to eat. As much as I want to lose weight, I don't think I want to lose it by throwing up and not eating.
My endo did blood work again, and all my levels have improved again... and I think the lowered insulin levels are the reason I can finally lose weight. They've dropped again, which is also good.

I am a SF buff too, Violet. I know Julie Czernada: she and I were part of the group that did Millenium PhilCon (Worldcon 2001)'s panels for teachers. She did way more than I did, but I do know her. The convention I was supposd to go to last weekend, but was way too sick to attend was Balticon. Memorial DAy, in Baltimore. I usually only get to Balticon and Philcon because of cost and my work schedule. I was bummed that I was really feeling too sick to attend. In fact, I'm worried I'll miss PhilCon because of money this year if I have the surgery! I'll run through all my sick days and comp time at work, so I won't have any time to take to go to Philcon!

Oh...and I am now regularly swimming 1/2 a mile: did it just under 40 minutes today, and then walked another mile in the pool.

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Old 06-07-2004, 09:18 AM   #6  
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Anonymouse - how much weight do you have to lose, if you don't mind me asking? I somehow had the impression that you only had 10-20 pounds to go, which was just the apron. Is this what your co-workers make such horrible remarks about?

Violet, sounds like you had a much more interesting week than I did. I hope you came home with lots of helpful info. My surgery went not as expected. I had complications due to adhesions, so I came home with a large scar instead of lap surgery, so this means no exercise for a month. I'm really having a hard time with that.

I also had my ovaries unexpectedly removed. They were bound in adhesions so she had to take them out. She said they would be bound again in 6 months and she'd have to take them out eventually anyway. Now I have to research and see what this changes for PCOS symptoms in the future.
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Old 06-07-2004, 09:51 AM   #7  
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Jennifer - Sorry to hear about the complications in your surgury Hopefully it will alleviate your PCOS, though.

Anonymouse - Have you already had the gastric bypass or are you getting it in the future? Congrats on swimming the 1/2 mile - you're in better shape than me!

Well, I've reached my first plateau But all is well otherwise. I didn't lose any pounds this past week, but I've been losing so rapidly that it all evens out anyway. I did lose about 0.5" from my hips, so at least my exercising is paying off. I've been kind of slack in my exercise the past few days - weekends are the worst because we always go to my mother-in-law's and she has all kinds of yummy German food cooked. It's hard enough to stay away from that - I'm not even thinking of exercising. Especially with hubby laughing at all the silly yoga positions She is really good about it though, and always asks me if I can eat what she's fixing or if she needs to make something special. It's bad when your mother-in-law is more supportive than your husband! Eh, I'm not complaining

Hope you're all doing well! Any hints for kicking myself out of this plateau? I've increased my calories a little bit, and I'm increasing my exercise this week too. Any other hints? Thanks!
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Old 06-07-2004, 04:16 PM   #8  
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Jennifer sorry if I missed it somewhere else but how did your surgery go? I hope you are recovering okay. I know it feels so sore in that area after they are digging around looking for things. How big were the cysts they removed? Well just a quick note to say get well soon and take care. Julie
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Old 06-07-2004, 11:26 PM   #9  
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Jennifer: I am glad you are healthy after the surgery, although sorry to hear the outcome. And I'm very understanding about the exercise: I couldn't exercise for 7 weeks because of my cast. Can you swim? The surgeon I talked to said I could swim or walk in the water as soon as I can get the scar wet and drains are removed.
I have at least 200 pounds before I'd be a normal weight on a BMI chart. But while I've lost weight everywhere, I've lost nothing there. However, I would honestly be content to be at the 220 I was at in late 1998-1999.
I get all kinds of comments. They seem to think that this is utterly hilarious. I also get excused of smelling bad They make comments about what I eat or don't eat, I get offered high-fat, high-calorie foods in nasty voices or I get told that I don't need that. Lately, its been people asking me if I'm pregnant because I can't eat. And its not all of them, but its enough to really get me down.

Biogeek: Please understand that I am not demeaning or slamming anybody who has had weight-loss surgery, but it wouldn't help my problem. My problem is directly and only related to the endocrine imbalance I have. I gained 180 pounds in about 2 years (Feb. 1999 to January 2001). My endocrinologist has examined my food logs for the last 3 years, as have various primary care physicians. My endocrinologist and 2 of my 3 primary care physicians have agreed that a gastric-bypass operation would only make me miserable... and since I already throw up lots, make that more likely.
I've been eating under 1100 calories a day every day for the last month: during the school week, its 800 or less, and I've only lost 6 pounds. The not-eating is directly related to the medication: I'm constantly nauseated or if I do eat, usually throw up. Most people would have lost more weight than the 6 pounds, especially since I'm still swimming.

Thanks for the compliment on the swimming. A good friend of mine who is really in good shape and does Pilates, yoga and weight training (she used to dance till she blewout her knee) said the same thing.
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Old 06-08-2004, 11:28 AM   #10  
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Anonymouse-

Oh, I see. I just assumed when you were talking about medical complications and people assuming you were having surgury that it was gastric bypass and that you were doing it Seems like your medical problems are much more complex than that. I didn't mean to trivialize it

Swimming is such great exercise. I used to swim all the time, then I got into basketball. I blew my knee out too, so now I'm onto yoga and callanetics, with a little running. I need to get back into swimming, it would be great for my knee, but there's no pool big enough to swim in around here. Most public/apartment pools are just oversized kiddie pools that only go to 5 feet or so.

It's horrible what your coworkers say to you! I remember always telling myself that once I got out of high school all the teasing and snide comments would stop because people grow up, but they don't. Basic primate heirarchy - you'd think we would have evolved past that socially by now. Have you talked to your boss about it? That's pretty blatant harassment. Did I hear you say you worked in a high school? I'm just sitting here shaking my head...what kind of examples are they setting? Geeze, people are stupid
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Old 06-08-2004, 03:36 PM   #11  
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Anonymouse, 50 pounds since October sounds encouraging. Have you lost anything recently? Other than from being sick from the medication? About losing the pannus - unfortunately the weight rarely leaves in the order we wish. I've heard so many people talk about losing their boobs first, or their legs, etc. I think the stomach is fairly commonly the last to go, especially on insulin resistant people. Have you tried many different combinations of diets? Like Atkins, Schwartzbein, etc. I don't know if you have looked into Schwartzbein or not. I was on a mailing list for that once, and there were some people that were truly ecstatic that they could finally lose weight. It wasn't a fast weight loss, but it was working. She is an endo (or maybe a gyn, but I am pretty sure endo) in California. I'm sorry that you are having such a hard time. Don't give up! There IS a way for you to do this, you just have to keep looking and trying, although that is really difficult, I know.
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Old 06-08-2004, 03:43 PM   #12  
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Vanessa - sorry I hit reply too soon. You sound like you're doing all the right things. The only thing I can see that you might add is lifting weights. If you can add a bit more muscle, you will require more calories to maintain, and that could give you a boost.

Julie, I'm not sure how big my cysts were when they actually took the ovaries. I remember they were approximately golf ball sized at the time of the last ultrasound. That isn't too big, but they finally understood how I was having pain because they were bound in scar tissue. It was equivalent to binding and squeezing a testicle. Ouch!

Oh Anon I just realized you had lost 6 pounds this month. You might be disappointed in that, but that is very good! That is 72 pounds a year, and that is very reasonable! You might take a long time to lose, but that is still an admirable loss and it will start adding up soon.
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Old 06-08-2004, 04:48 PM   #13  
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Talking Hi Girls!!!

Hey everybody!!!

I'm still here in smoggy Southern California but I wanted to check in and let you know I'm still alive and ticking!! I've been running ragged ever since I got here and somehow managed to drop about 6 pounds!! Course that might be because we moved stuff all day Friday and I was up until 5 am setting up for a yard sale, then saturday same thing, plsu cleaning, walking, swimming, etc. Phew! I've also been doing major pc work on everyones computers...my poor friends are all still on dial-up. YECK!! But DSL is coming soon.

I have managed to get my friends eating semi-right...got them whole wheat foods, salads, veggies, etc. They hadn't seen me since Feb 1st and were amazed at the weight I've lost. I didn't really think I looked that different but then of course I see myself daily. They dont. I still feel fat though...must be a guilt complex thing or something heheehe..

Jennifer: Hey girl...hang in there... I bet you are glad its all over. Intake lottsa soy! Helps with the side effects of going straight into menopause.

Mouse, Violet, Seek, Biogeek, Jbbm, and everyone else.. HI!!

Time to go clean some more then going roller skating tonight. I'll check in later if I can get to the computer. Miss all of ya!!
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Old 06-08-2004, 07:10 PM   #14  
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Vanessa: Thanks. Yea, I not only teach in a high school, but I teach at one for kids with severe emotional disturbance and other multiple disabilities. Some of the staff isn't any better than the students! Actually, some of the students are WAY better. I haven't talked with my supervisor about it, primarily because the administrative team was part (and mostly conducted) the whole "You Stink!" campaign. They threatened to terminate me, brought in HR, required that I go to counseling (and a person THEY chose!), and I also have a written warning in my employee file about how bad my personal hygeine is. Now, I swim nearly daily: So not only am I in the water for an hour or more a day, but I shower afterward! There are days I take 2 showers!
I nearly quit over the whole thing and then another staff member who is truly my friend discovered who started it (my teaching assistant from last year; I have a different one now), and convinced me to stay. The topper was when they talked (without my permission) to my endocrinologist (not the one in Va, but the one she referred me to when I moved to Baltimore).

Jennifer: I actually saw my new primary care doctor today (she was pretty nice), and she was concerned that I'd lost 50 pounds since October, and 6 pounds in the last 2 weeks. She is making me have an abdominal ultrasound to make sure there isn't something going on there as well. :sigh: That can only be done in the morning because you're not allowed to eat or drink anything after midnight the night of the test. This is going to be a problem to schedule... my current TA had a minor royal hissy fit when I left 10 minutes before the end of teaching and 45 minutes before all the kids were gone... Most of our homeroom was absent anyway, so she probably had kids for a total of 15-20 minutes. She'll freak if I come in late and miss part of 2nd period (we don't have a class first period). I don't really want to wait over a week to have it done... And now I'm worried because my endocrinologist called and left a message that she had my blood test results and wanted to discuss them with me. She's never done that before. And she discussed the test results with me almost 2 weeks ago when she got the results the first time. She had the insulin results then, so she should have also had the blood sugar results... I know she had the thyroid, and the cortisol then also, and most of the CBC results. The only things I can think of as being bad would be the testosterone... It might have gone up again... or the liver enzyme tests. And of course, I didn't check my phone messages from work, so I didn't get it till I came home tonight after 6.
As far as the weight loss goes: I'm glad that I'm finally losing weight. I'm following a low-fat, healthy carb diet that is a combination of things: most of my dinners are picked up at my gym (because of graduate class 3 nights a week, I'm not home until after 10, so I take my dinner with me... and this way I'm never tempted by any type of fast food. Not only do I dislike fast food, but the way I'm feeling now, it might be disasterous! The chili that was the special at the college deli last night nearly knocked me over with the smell... And I couldn't leave the room! 3 other students were eating that!), and those are low-fat, healthy carb: mostly multigrain products, lots of fresh fruit and fresh veggies. Tonight, for example, was broccoli cheddar soup with a whole-wheat soft pretzel. Very yummy. And okay, its supposed to be LUNCH, but since I haven't been eating lunch because of the nausea, it makes a good dinner. it was about 400 calories for the whole meal. Tomorrow dinner is seafood salad with lowfat mayonnaise, a multigrain bread stick, an apple and a can of V8. The other meal is a fresh pasta salad with low-fat pesto (the pasta is whole wheat and veggie), and a rye crisp with cherries. Those are both a little over 400 calories each.
If I weren't nauseated, breakfast was egg whites with 2 strips of bacon; lunch varies: lots of times its turkey bologna sandwich on thin sliced wheat bread (3 slices is a serving, I forget how many carbs), some sort of fresh fruit and either unsweetened iced tea or diet soda (no nutrasweet).
And that is very typically how I've eaten for years, except that I used to skip breakfast all the time. I've made a concerted effort over the last year
and a half to make sure I eat SOMETHING for breakfast. Because I've been sick, its been these AchievOne drinks that I pick up at TraderJoes, which are low-carb high-protein drinks for women with all kinds of added vitamins and minerals. That's been lunch or another kind of high-protein shake.
I realize that some of the reason that my initially losses were so slow was because I was also gaining muscle. I swim and do water aerobics (which includes weight training using the water weights).
I'm not entirely convinced that the surgery is the way to go, honestly, but my endocrinologist is pretty concerned about the effects of too much insulin, and since I can't tolerate the glucophage, this may be the only way to have some measureable effect in a short time period.

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Old 06-08-2004, 09:14 PM   #15  
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Gosh Anon, I'm sorry you are having all this hit you at once. Would you be eligible for home health care to help you after the surgery? I have a very modest insurance policy, but some might do that if they are better than mine. I know all these blood tests in the air are worrisome. I just went through all of this. I think I asked my surgeon 2-3 times in that many days if my ovaries looked cancerous. I kept wanting to reaffirm that I did ask and didn't dream it. I waited for a month to have the surgery after she told me I had a complex cyst, and that was a tough wait. I hope the waiting goes by quickly for you. Hopefully they find out answers for you. Don't be too concerned with surgery. I don't know anybody that isn't afraid of it, but it happens every second. You aren't alone.
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