My Remission Story On Methimazole **psychotic Episode With Happy Ending - Personal Stories - Living with Graves Disease


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My Remission Story On Methimazole **psychotic Episode With Happy Ending


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#1 Chocolate Apsara

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Posted 17 October 2019 - 07:30 PM


I feel very grateful to have been in remission for 2.5 years, without surgery or RAI. To save everyone time, I would like to first tell what I think helped me. While they may not work for many other people, but I would like to share them in case they may be of help.


*Self-compassion, gratitude, and appreciation of beauty


In my case, treating myself as a good friend rather than an abject failure who deserved disgust and humiliation, seemed to have made all the difference. 

I channeled my anger into instincts to improve, appreciate, connect and protect. I looked for the good and the beautiful everywhere, and discovered how fortunate I have been. 


I had been an incisive, excitable, self-righteous person who was giving but self-absorbed. I was cynical in a way that I thought made me superior to other people who are deceived. I came to see that I was just like everyone else and bonded through our common destiny. 


Me: Asian-American female, 5'5, 125 lbs and age 46 when diagnosed in June 2015, "numbers off the charts." (One aunt has GD too.)

Personality: perfectionist, high-achiever, procrastinator with addict behavior (to innocuous things like books, food, and the Internet. But it all added to the guilt.)

Triggers: first-responder type job with secondary trauma. Unemployed through what I felt was an unjust dispute.



Treatment: My endo started me on 10(?) mg daily, then slowly tapered the dose until June 2017. Tapered down eventually to tiny daily dose; used a cutter. Small goiter present to date.

Endo gently suggested surgery and RAI to me, saying that remission only happens for 25-35% of patients. 




*I work out 4-6 times a week, 15 min-1+hour. Learned boxing to take out my aggression. Boxing with light weights; swimming; modified adult ballet; yoga; jogging. Whatever gives you pleasure.

*I eat food I enjoyed, with a lot of dark greens (I scald them in chicken soup), some grains, fruit, tofu. But also have meat and seafood in what was a balanced yummy diet with small but satisfying amounts of fat. (Stayed away from GD-trigger foods as doctor said until remission.)


Long live dessert! As I came off the methimazole and my emotions fluctuated due to some life stress I cut back on sugar and chocolate, but still had small amounts when I could. The key was not to deprive myself entirely but heed my body's message. Fruit is a lovely substitute.



*Sleep was often disrupted; quality could be poor. I struggled with my perfectionism and bad habits and all too often still would not rest. Naps, if you can take them, are lifesavers. 

I was depressed but did not realize it. Childhood wounds that were unhealed kept me despondent. But I gradually healed as the methimazole brought me back into equilibrium. 


*Psychotic episode: After two years I was on a minimum dosage (I think .5 mg every other day?), but endo was (very understandably) hesitant to take me off for fear of relapse.


Then a life stressor hit in mid-2017. I became suicidal. I'd never felt that way in my life. As bad as the stressor was, it did not warrant my reaction. If I misplaced my car keys, a voice in my head told me I was so incompetent I would never be able to survive and I should just die. I then understood what manic depression was: "a black cloud that hangs over you wherever you go." The episode went on for several weeks. 


I contacted my endo. She halted the drug that same day. Immediately my spirits began to lift, and within a week I was tolerably myself again.


REMISSION: I had not been back on methimazole since mid-2017, so almost 2.5 years in remission. I had a number slightly out of range twice, but the endo said not to worry. In March 2019 she  told me to go back every year. 

I may be slightly hypo sometimes; get quite chilled. Or I may be yo-yoing between the two like some of you experienced. But I take care of myself and it's okay.



Bless you all. My suffering, including the suicidal spell, receded and was replaced by bliss. I realized how precious life was.


I've since found a job, restarted my career, and have been weathering divorce (unwanted) and saved my child from thoughts of self-harm. Even then, GD has not returned and...if it does?


There is a Daoist saying that goes: If Nature turns my arm into a rooster, I'll use it to tell time. As I hope for the restoration of my family and accept that my marriage may not survive, I remain grateful in the thought of the joys of that love and know that I will strive for grace and honor. This life is worth living. 


I wish you all the very best healing. May we all be happy, healthy and loving.


#2 Chocolate Apsara

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Posted 19 October 2019 - 06:24 PM

Sleep is now much better. You'll feel it gradually get better, deeper, sweeter, more wholesome. Let us all get drunk from rest. :)


At my thinnest I was down to 115 pounds. I was eating 7 meals a day, wore no coat in the depth of winter, and cavalier about the pounding of blood in my head. Didn't really even notice anything was wrong until my primary doc flagged it. So I was a pretty bad case. 

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