The Fat Girl Treatment

My letter to an attending at the family medicine:

I am very disappointed in my appointment from today.

I requested Vitamin B6, Vitamin D, & Parathyroid tests. I have a history of B6 def. and an ongoing issue with Vitamin D def.; as for the parathyroid test, I understand that vitamin D and hyperparathyroidism are related. While the B6 & D test requests were accepted, the PTH test wasn’t. Instead, I’m getting my TSH level checked, which gets checked every year and is always normal. The PTH request was to make sure that that isn’t playing a part in the D deficiency. My mom has a D deficiency that has caused many fractures. I want to prevent that from happening to me.

I also requested a referral to pool therapy. My knee has continued to buckle when I’m exercising. I also feel like the muscle in my leg has gotten weaker. I would appreciate being able to do pool therapy so I can exercise more often. The therapy could also prevent injuries that the D def. & my EDS could cause.

A nurse said I had high blood pressure again. It’s funny how I have geographical hypertension. If I’m in the family medicine clinic, I have it. If I’m across the hall at the gynecologist or down the street seeing the rheumatologist or the hematologist or the ER staff, it’s on the low end of normal. The “hypertension” I get there is related to the machines and a lack of competency on the part of some staff members.1

I was also a bit annoyed that the doctor looked at my chart and declared me to be a prediabetic. My chart doesn’t indicate this. My A1C is normal. My random blood sugar levels are low to normal. My fasting sugars are normal. My glucose tolerance test is always normal. The only “prediabetic” thing about me is the insulin resistance and my weight. My sugar is normal.

I’m a bit disgusted that I’m always given the fat girl treatment. I went in, said what I needed, and why I needed it. I was then told on the PTH that I was wrong about what I needed. I want my parathyroid checked because hyperparathyroidism is linked to vitamin D deficiencies, especially ones that are long-term, which mine is. She thought I wanted my thyroid stimulating hormone checked. Considering that most of the tests they do for hypothyroidism don’t even work with people who’ve had it confirmed via antibody tests, I really don’t want unnecessary thyroid tests done.2 She also ordered tests for cholesterol, which is typical. I get it done every year, even though it is recommended once every five years for someone at my age & risk level. Doing it so often is wrong, especially if you factor in that every unnecessary test puts unwarranted stress on my fragile veins.

  1. The test is done multiple times on the same arm within minutes and seconds of the last test with the wrong size cuffs. None of the nurses know how to do a manual check. In addition to the faux hypertension, always leave with redness, petechia, and bruises. I’ve also been given blood pressure medicine before for it. Taking that medicine caused me to become hypotensive. 

  2. To be honest, my TSH levels are closer to what you’d expect for someone with hyperthyroidism, not hypothyroidism. Always have been, except the time that I actually had medicine-induced hyperthyroidism. 

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Janet Morris

I'm from Huntsville, Alabama. I've got as many college credits as a doctorate candidate, and the GPA of some of them, too. I have a boss by the name of Amy Pond. She's a dachshund. My parents both grew up in Alabama.

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