New member in San Jose seeking Kaiser GP advice

Discussion in 'Chit Chat' started by deerphoto, Aug 26, 2013.

  1. deerphoto

    deerphoto Member

    I'm not sure if I have CFS or something similar but want to investigate this avenue. I wonder if anyone wants to contribute thoughts and if anyone has a recommendation for a sympathetic Kaiser based doctor in San Jose area (or I'll drive up the peninsula or to the east bay if necessary)
    I recently stomped my foot and my Kaiser GP did run some "extended" bloodwork . Mostly normal with "slight" C Reactive protein (.7 Kaiser scale <.5 mg/dL normal) ESR at top end 20 ( 0-20mm/hr) and Vitamin D of 18 (kaiser norms 20-79)
    Concurrently, I have been dx with sleep apnea (Cpaps are not fun - actually anything with pap isn't fun). I have had clinical depression off and on for years. (currently treated with venaflaxine) ADD (adderall)
    My current Kaiser doctor has sent me to the allergist who said that I did not have allergies but a "super sensitive" nose and prescribed flonase. She sent me to get a CT because I complained of headaches and a general fogginess. Fortunately it was normal. She said that the sleepiness and foggy headness were related to the sleep apnea. She said that people who are depressed frequently have various aches and pains. I also get the sense that she sees the depression diagnosis and since she can't find anything diagnostically wrong is dismissing my issues as depressive.
    So the basic symptoms I note are : tired ( alot!), non localized aches and pains, frequent "colds", sleeping many hours and not feeling rested- over 12 last night (even with the CPAP), low energy, numbness in hands (most often after sleeping yes I'm a side sleeper but also 30% of the time not related to sleep, headaches, stiffness. Sore throat several days a week.

    Any thoughts appreciated
  2. rockgor

    rockgor Active Member

    Hi Deerphoto

    Welcome to the Board. If you click on "Forums" above, you'll see there are other boards at this site.
    There is a board for CFS and Fibro. The discussion group is the 4th one on the list. It shows over
    100,000 messages.

    We have no doctors here. Just fellow patients who can sometimes give helpful info. I've had CFS for
    over 30 years. Still can't make much sense of it. Medical science seems pretty perplexed too.

    Are you treating your depression? Here are the modalities that helped me. Meds; therapy; hospitalization;
    the 12 step group Emotions Anonymous; the book "Feeling Good" by David Burns. Didn't get cured,
    but they all helped.

    Good luck
    Rock
  3. mbofov

    mbofov Active Member

    deerphoto - some thoughts: first, educate yourself as much as possible. Regular doctors pretty much just hand out drugs. e.g., Flonase is a steroid. It's not without side effects and to prescribe a steroid for a "sensitive nose" (whatever that is!) is maybe not a good thing. Read about steroids and their effects, they can be pretty damaging to the body.

    Sleep apnea definitely can cause low energy and foggy headaches. One of my sons had sleep apnea and was constantly tired until he was diagnosed, started using the cpap and it made a world of difference for him. It may not be a fun machine to use but from what I saw it was worth the inconvenience or discomfort. It really made a big difference for him. He's also in the process of losing weight, which I think was a contributing factor to the sleep apnea. How long have you been using the cpap machine? Maybe it takes time for results to show.

    How's your diet? Many many people are sensitive or allergic to wheat or gluten, and feel much better when they cut it out. There are several other common allergens: dairy, corn, soy - you might try an elimination diet and see what happens. One member here had pretty bad fatigue until she cut out wheat. Also, I'm sure you know that sugar is just bad for so many reasons. So look at your diet. Cut out processed foods. Eat lots of vegies and some fruit and make sure you get enough protein, etc.

    Low energy: you might have low B12 - have your doctors checked this out? Also, low folate can cause a form of anemia and fatigue. Look at the MCV number on your CBC complete blood count (annual blood work). If this number is on the high side, even if in the normal range, it can indicate a B12 and/or folate deficiency (not folic acid, which is synthetic and can cause a folate deficiency)

    Low B12 can cause numbness and tingling.

    You might be low in pantothenic acid also, one of the B vitamins crucial for adrenal health. Low pantothenic acid can cause frequent sore throats. Have you had a lot of stress? Long-term stress can weaken the adrenals and cause a pantothenic acid deficiency. Do you take a good B vitamin complex? You might need extra pantothenic acid too.

    re depression: prescription ADs can have some pretty negative side effects. You might look into something like 5-htp or l-tryptophan, amino acids that naturally raise serotonin levels without the side effects of things like Effexor. They are much safer. Also, low omega 3 levels are linked to depression. Do you take a good fish oil or something similar (flaxseed oil etc.) Also, exercise has been shown to be just as effective as prescription ADs in the treatment of depression.

    There are so many things that can contribute to how you are feeling and most M.D.s won't get at the root causes. I'd urge you to see a naturopath or integrative medicine doctor if possible. They should look at your diet which is extremely important, also the drugs you're taking, your adrenal health, food sensitivities, etc.

    One more thing - you may be hypothyroid. Again, I would urge you to investigate this possibility with a naturopath of IM doctor.

    You really do need to educate yourself. Years ago I was tired a lot and so a doctor just prescribe Prozac -(why???) I took it for 2 or 3 days and hated it so stopped it. I wasn't tired because of a lack of Prozac. Lack of Prozac does not cause fatigue. I ended up seeing a chiropractor who does muscle testing who found that my adrenals were weak from years of chronic stress - this can cause severe fatigue and the answer is not Prozac or another AD. The chiro gave me an adrenal glandular which helped a lot and I had to learn how to deal with stress - meditation, counseling, etc. Also extra pantothenic acid.

    They are so many possibilities for why you are tired but I think there are answers. But I don't think you will find them with a regular M.D. Good luck -

    Mary