Tuesday, October 27, 2009


Well, we haven't called the doctor. This is not a bad thing. {smile}

On Sunday around bedtime, Dad brought up something he remembered about his older sister, my aunt Kitty, having trouble with flushing when she was taking niacin. I am taking niacin for my balance, so he thought that might be involved.

One thing led to another, and we discovered that I am not taking 250mg of time-release niacin like one of my doctors suggested. The current bottle is not time-release; it's all at once. I'm pretty sure I remember that my doctor specified time-release to reduce trouble with flushing and burning sensations, as well as to improve it's effects on my balance.

I found some time-release niacin like I'm supposed to take. I haven't taken it yet. Monday I didn't take any niacin beyond that found in my vitamins. I wanted to give my system a chance to calm down. It didn't get a long chance. I started having balance trouble after 10pm on Tuesday, so I took one time-release niacin pill just now. I do hope it works, and doesn't cause any flushing. We'll have to see what happens. If necessary, the flushing was worse than the balance. However, I don't think time-release niacin caused flushing before. {cross fingers hopefully, {smile}

So far I haven't had any flushes since I stopped the other niacin. However, it's only two days; that's too soon to tell. Last week I don't remember what happened Sunday and Monday. However, I do know I had one Tuesday morning, one Saturday morning, and no bad ones in between. That's longer than I've been off niacin so far. {resigned smile}

I'm hopeful - much more hopeful than I was when my doctor prescribed vitamin D. This might not be the full story. I am beginning to near the expected age for menopause, after all. Still, this looks promising. Even if it just cuts out the painfully burning flushes, that would be such and improvement! I hope I'd get my life back if I got rid of those. {Smile}

Anne Elizabeth Baldwin

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

{steadying sigh}

Well, yesterday Dad managed to get the test results out of a nurse at my doctor's office.

Thyroid: normal
Pituitary hormones: normal
Vitamin B12: normal
Vitamin D: LOW

So my doctor wants to put me on theraputic levels of vitamin D, and run another test in a few weeks.

I know that Vitamin D deficiency can be a serious problem. I'm too old for rickets, but it can increase tendencies for osteoporosis and other bone trouble. I don't want that. However, I don't think Vitamin D affects hot flushes/flashes much. I can't find anything that claims it does, and Dad doesn't know of any connection, either. {half-smile}

I had another nasty hot flush yesterday morning. I couldn't go to the air conditioned room a few rooms away. I couldn't clear the table. I couldn't even get up to turn on a fan, or pour a glass of ice water. I had to wait for my parents to get those to help me cool down.

Mom picked up the Vitamin D this morning. I've taken two pills today, and will continue to do so. However... if I have another bad flush, my doctor will get a call that hopefully will make it clear that waiting a few weeks to do anything more for the flushes is unacceptable. {grimace} I don't feel I can take on any new projects until they're fixed somehow. That includes applying for a librarian position that's come up at the university. The deadline is in November, so I can't expect them to get
fixed in time. My health is just too unreliable when a single flush knocks out a whole morning, or a whole evening. {resigned look}

I just want my life back. {Sigh}

Anne Elizabeth Baldwin

Sunday, October 18, 2009

{peek in}

{peek in} Hello. {smile}

I'm sorry I've been neglecting my blog recently. I'm afraid this summer has been all too interesting on the medical front, as some of you already know. {rueful smile}

I had a really nasty reaction to a medication in July; it took me half a week to identify, and three weeks after going off to feel reasonably like myself again. Then in the first week of August, I had a panting-and-coughing-up-pink-mucous attack that was diagnosed as a panic attack, but followed by a similar attack without the worry.

The week after that, I had a really nasty hot flush, during which I blacked out. My doctor noticed that my diabetes was acting up. so she decided to treat that as the most likely cause of hot flashes. Well, the blood sugar levels responded favorably to the insulin she prescribed. The hot flushes did not. I've had a few near black-out since.

So my doctor is now beginning to look into the flushes. I'm... not handling waiting for test results as well as I'd like. {half-smile} I've caught myself being far too sensitive this weekend. I just hope my friends will understand. {tentative smile}

Anne Elizabeth Baldwin