I was 39 at diagnosis of a pituitary tumor. I had cushings disease initially.
Once the tumor was removed transphenoidally I developed Addison's Disease because my Adrenal glands had atrophied. I also developed hypothyroidism, acromegally,hyperparathyroidism.
Three months before I had the pituitary surgery I had my first cervical fusion surgery. Five after the pit. surgery I had the next cervical fusion. Now all my cervical disks were fused. Four years later I had four ankle fusions. Two on my right ankle and two on my right. It took a year for me to recover from each ankle fusion due to the Addison's Disease(slow healing).
Next I had an umbilical hernia repair just a few months after my last ankle fusion. I then developed a prolapsed uterous because of the steroid use for the Addison's disease.
I have been a nurse for 22 yrs. I developed Cushing's Disease during my last year in nursing school. At that time I didn't know I had the pit. tumor yet. I new was sick, but I didn't know with what yet. I gained almost 100 lbs. my last year in nursing school. I saw several doctors after I graduated,but nobody had a clue. It took me several more years of suffering and research to discover my own diagnosis.
Once I thought I new, I went to my pcp and asked him to run a few tests. The results were suspisious for Cushings. He sent me up to our Medical University for further study. Even with high levels of cortisol many mistakes and early testing not done until the damage and years of suffering had occured, and a sensitive and untrusting relationship had developed between my endocrinologist and I due to having to be relentless in my quest to an answer to my health problems, because I knew they were not just in my head. Thats what you have to do is be kindly relentless. Its an art.
During the road of an illness to the day of diagnosis is a long an ugly memory for most of us. It leaves us with a kind of PTSD. It is very difficult to treat for the majority of us. For those of us who have a spiritual/religeous theme in it have a n easier ability to cope with the issues of having these types of health issues.
During my road I was single with no sinificant other. My mother had died 20 yrs. before. I was a single parent of a three yr old and a fifteen year old and I had a brand new career so I had to look bright and sharp everyday I went to work.
Had I not been a nurse I 'm not sure I would be here right now.