thyroid issues/mulitnodular goiter--dysphagia

crittermom

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Has anyone had any experience with either issues? I was diagnosed as having Hypothyroidism about a year ago. I was placed on 75mg of Synthroid.
In August of this year after being hospitalized,they found that my levels were too high.So, I was placed on 88mg of Synthroid.And told that,that would help my thyroid issues.Sadly, this is not the case for me.
At the end of August, I had some x-rays done--for some spine issues.On one of the x-rays,there were some cysts discovered.I told my primary about these.He then ordered a thyroid ultrasound to be done.I had it done last week.
Yesterday, I got the news from that scan.It was to say the least, VERY upsetting for me and my hubby.Not to mention my kids,although they do not know everything yet.
I was diagnosed as having Mulitnodular Goiter on my thyroid.If you picture your thyroid,it is supposed to be smooth.Mine is not.Mine is covered in MANY nodules.The biggest one measured a centimeter.
My Dr kind of shrugged it off as nothing to worry about.I was livid!!! I am the one here that can barely swallow anything.I am in constant pain in my throat area.Food gets stuck in my throat all the time.
So, after me telling him that I wanted something done about it,he decided to send me to an Endocronologist(sp) for further testing.
And then proceded to ask me if HE had ever ordered a Barium swallow.To which, I of course said NO. Then,he asks ME why not....ummmmmmmmm hello you are the Dr--I don't know.So,being that I can NOT swallow ANYTHING--water/pills/spit--without it feeling as if it gets stuck,he has ordered me to have one done.They are checking for any blockages what so ever in my throat--plus the dysphagia.
I am VERY nervous about what they will find on the scan,and what the Endo will say he wants to do.I know the barium is NASTY stuff too(not looking forward to that)
My question, is has anyone here been through this? Or am I as I've learned,just a freak of nature? Anyone care to share their stories with me?
 

calico2222

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No honey, you're not a freak of nature! I just found out this spring/summer that my thyroid basically looks like swiss cheese. The originally thought I was hypo because I had all the usual symptoms (tiredness, forgetfulness, thinning hair, dry skin, etc) but when I did the nuclear test where they pumped my body full of iodine my thyroid started overproducing. My endo said my body basically isn't producing enough iodine and put me on kelp pills to see if that helps.

I admit I DO feel better! I had the same problem as you where I had a hard time swallowing and things getting stuck and gagging. I had so many tests ordered by my PCP and everything was coming back negative that I finally made an appointment with an endo on my own. I have to go back for another nuclear scan in a week to see if there has been improvement but I feel like there has been.

I wouldn't worry about things too much. Before my test they told me it could be nodules, a goiter or a tumor. Nodules just happen as you age. Some people get them worse than others which is what causes the problems but it's easily controlled (from my understanding) once you get the right dosage of whatever you need. Even a tumor isn't terrible. Scary? Yes. But with medication you can live a long and healthy life without a thyroid. I know 3 people that have had to have their thyroid removed and they are fine. My endo said that thyroid cancer is very rare though. Many calming and good luck going out to you.

Oh, I hate the barium stuff too! Easiest way to take it is as cold as you can get it and through a straw. Don't taste quite as nasty that way.
 

catmom2wires

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I've had/have dysphagia and have had 2 barium swallows over the years (neuromuscular disease here). Feel free to ask any questions.

Good luck! Glad you are finally getting some help.

Cally
 
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crittermom

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I am actually hoping that they take my thyroid out.That way, I don't have to go through the tests every 6 months to see if the nodules--or goiter has grown.
Cally,do I need someone to go with me for this test?Someone to drive me home? I didn't think to ask that of my Dr.I do know,that I am NPO after midnight.And that the test should take about 20-30 min.Also,how much do I have to drink? ewwwwwwwwwww just the thoughts of that junk. I heard that it is 2 to 3 cups of barium.
If I think of anything else to ask, I will be sure to let you know.
Thanks Cally and Hope!!!
 

ldg

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I don't know a thing about it, I just know I'm at risk for thyroid problems because my Grandma died of thyroid cancer, and my mom had some kind of problem with hers (I was young when it happened), and she had them removed. She never had any problems after they came out - and since I'm 46, that was probably 40 years ago, and she's 76 now.

 
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crittermom

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My Mom also had thyroid problems.She had to have a bone scan done,and had to have her throat asperated.I don't have cysts,so that is not something that needs to be done right now.Or at least,that is my impression of things.
My Dad died from Stage 4 Throat Cancer.So, I am at risk for it because of that.
Thanks Laurie!
 

crazyforinfo

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Tammy I had the test done before for other reasons. It's thick like a milk shake. They gave me a large cup there to drink. Take your time drinking it even if it's nasty. It wasn't that horrible but it makes you feel like you have burp and you CAN'T for the test. If you can not burp and follow their directions properly it will be over before you know it.



Also my cousin had the goiter and you could see it sticking out of her neck. It was HUGE. She had to take meds to shrink it down and it worked without going through surgery. She has been fine since and I think that was about 2 years ago. I will ask mom for more details tomorrow.

You will be fine!!!
 

calico2222

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Originally Posted by crittermom

I am actually hoping that they take my thyroid out.That way, I don't have to go through the tests every 6 months to see if the nodules--or goiter has grown.
Cally,do I need someone to go with me for this test?Someone to drive me home? I didn't think to ask that of my Dr.I do know,that I am NPO after midnight.And that the test should take about 20-30 min.Also,how much do I have to drink? ewwwwwwwwwww just the thoughts of that junk. I heard that it is 2 to 3 cups of barium.
If I think of anything else to ask, I will be sure to let you know.
Thanks Cally and Hope!!!
You shouldn't need someone to drive you home afterwards, but check with your doctor. The tests I had to drink Barium for weren't for my thyroid but all that really does is allow the machines to pic up images, it shouldn't knock you out. For mine, I had to drink 2 bottles (it was for a stomach, intestine scan) but in the middle I had to get a mammogram...yeah, a fun day.
I really isn't that bad. Do the "pinch the nose thing" and just chug. That's why I said drinking it from a straw makes it a little easier going down. It really isn't SUPER disgusting. The crap you have to drink for a colonoscopy is worse....be glad you aren't having that done!
 

strange_wings

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I had a GI series done and had to drink 3 cups of barium. The fake fruity flavoring was nasty - but that tastes bad for just about anything. Texture wise, it would be like drinking mud... technically is since barium is a component in some drilling muds to make them heavy. (useless info of the day
)
You may be nauseous afterwards if you have a more sensitive stomach. When I had it done I was in the middle of a gallbladder attack episode, so anything on my stomach caused pain and nausea.
I'd suggest having someone with you just for moral support.


I'm pretty sure my maternal grandmother had her thyroid removed for this. My mother has a few nodules showing up on hers.


I hope your scans go well and that the endocrinologist proves more helpful to you.
 
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crittermom

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thanks everyone.
I'm not as nervous about the barium swallow now.I had one done YEARS ago--for an upper GI series.
I have a very strong gag reflux,so I am hoping I can keep this junk down.Atleast until they are done.LOL!!!
I would LOVE for someone to be there with me.But, my hubby will be at work.And I need to find someone to take my Daughter to work that day.So,that leaves me all alone for this.That's a scarey thing.
I'll call the hospital and ask if someone needs to come with me.If they say yes, he will have to take off of work.If not, then I would MUCH rather he go to my Endo appt.
 

catmom2wires

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You won't need anyone to be with you. He'd just have to sit in the waiting room anyway due to the radiation involved in the testing.

Barium swallows are pretty much a non-event. Since you have dysphagia, they won't be expecting you do gulp down vast amounts of barium, as it will be impossible and they don't want to be doing the Heimlich there in the room!

You'll be fine. Be sure and post with a follow up.

Cally
 
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crittermom

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I will.Thanks Cally!!!
I just called the X-ray dept. They verified that I don't need a driver.Thankfully
 

starryeyedtiger

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I had a barium swallow done a few years ago when I was having a ton of GI problems. It's really not as bad as you think it will be!
I promise!

The secret is to chug it. If you chug it is a lot more plesant than trying to sip on it. Mine tasted like a weird smoothie.

Good lucky sweetie, you're in my prayers!
 
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