Monday, March 12, 2007

Thyroid Cancer - I'm Pregnant & It's a Girl!

On October 7th I was feeling nauseated. My period was late. I decided to take a pregnancy test. I did not believe that it would be positive because I had been told that it would take a lot for me to get pregnant, if at all. I took the test and immediately the second line popped up signaling that I was in fact pregnant. I was in disbelief! It has been so easy. I was convinced that God wanted this baby here for a reason when it had overcome all odds.

I had been reading and reading about pregnancy after a thyroidectomy and RAI. I had learned that as your pregnancy progresses you will need to add more thyroid hormone to help give the baby what they need. The baby uses your thyroid for the first 2 trimesters and then in the third it’s own thyroid begins to take over. My endocrinologist didn’t seem to know this but luckily for me he was willing to oblige to a point. I had appointments with my endocrinologist on November 8, 2001, December 14th, 2001 and March 19th 2002. During that time my TSH rose so my medication was adjusted from .150 mg Synthroid to .175 mgs. My Tg began to rise as well. I was told that we were not going to test Tg until after the pregnancy was over. One of my tests came back as 54 which was quite high. My endocrinologist told me that the proteins for thyroglobulin and those produced in pregnancy by something else were very similar and caused the Tg levels to be artificially elevated so he decided not to test my Tg until after my daughter was born. I do not know if this information is correct because I have not been able to find research to support this information. I have found that Tg is elevated in an iodine deficient state which is what I was – I am convinced. I never took any supplements after the second round of RAI to build my levels back up. I am allergic to seafood so I avoid all things related to fish and seaweed and I did not use salt. Although the use of refined salt is not recommended for iodine supplementation either due to the chloride used in the refining process.

I was so sick with my baby. This was even worse than when I was pregnant with my son. I was nauseated with him in the morning would throw up and then would feel a bit better. With my 2nd child I was sick all day long. I had to take drugs to keep from vomiting all day long. I threw up every morning and sometimes during the day. It was awful. I did not want to eat much of anything. I know my diet was lacking in good nutrients.

On June 4, 2002 I gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. Sierra was born VBAC because I didn’t want more surgeries. It was 34 hours of labor. She was a healthy 8 lbs 5 oz and 19” long. I was so relieved to see a healthy baby after worrying for 9 mos that she would be OK after having 2 rounds of radioactive iodine.

I had a follow up with my endocrinologist on June 25th. This was my first appointment post pregnancy. My levels were not doing well but I was still dealing with coming off of pregnancy hormones so we would wait.

At 6 weeks postpartum I had my follow up appointment with my OB/GYN. We decided that I would go on the mini pill so that I could continue to nurse my daughter. I had done this with my son and had no issues. This time things did not go well. I had a very bad reaction. My brain fogged and I had no coordination. It was awful. I knew it was a problem when one day I started running the water to fill the utility sink to soak some baby clothes and forgot about it for several HOURS! I didn’t notice it until I had flooded my laundry room. The water was running out of the room into the garage through the walls. It was at this point that my husband and I decided that I needed to go off the pill. I just couldn’t deal with the hormones. They were reacting poorly with my thyroid issues. This was only the beginning of what I would deal with after this pregnancy.