March 3, 2009

I'm not a doctor, I just play one on the internet

I’m doing that thing again where I feel kind of fat and maybe a little achy so I start Googling symptoms like fatigue, weight gain and moodiness and start reading up on all my possible illnesses. There are a lot of things that pop up when you Google those symptoms. The top 10 are:

Abdominal Obesity Metabolic Syndrome.
Ok, I feel kind of fat and that may be because I just at 2 mini burgers and fries from Ruby Tuesday’s, but I still shop at normal mainstream clothing stores so I think I am alright with this one.
Achard-Thiers Syndrome.
This occurs only in diabetic post-menopausal women. I am indeed a woman, but thankfully the other 2 do not apply…at least not today with this bout of hypochondria.
Bipolar Disorder.
Really? Can bipolar disorder really make you gain weight? I think this really only applies to the moodiness part, don’t you? Besides, I would love to be that manic, but I think I am too lazy to actually have both sides of the bipolar coin.
Cushing’s’ Syndrome
OK, now we’re talking. This is something I can sink my teeth into. When I click on the link, it tells me there are 81 more possible symptoms for this disease! Oh my, this is a veritable feast for hypochondriac like me! But, when I read the symptoms it’s like someone threw darts at a wall of symptoms – weight gain or weight loss, hair loss or hirsutism, thin arms, fat neck, blah, blah, blah. This is too all over the board and would require an actual trip to an actual doctor to diagnose, so I am skipping Cushing’s, although, I do think my dog may have it.
Depressive Disorders 
Cop out! How is this different from depression? Screw you. Been there, done that, give me something that is actually going to get me some sympathy and a magic cure that will zap my girth!
Postpartum Depression.
Now, this is serious. I actually had this after giving birth to Max and is indeed no laughing matter, however, I was thin and trim while suffering from this condition and I had nice big breastfeeding boobs to boot.
Autoimmune Lymphoproliferative Syndrome.
Hmm, I like the sound of this. It sounds like something that would be a diagnosis on House or my favorite, Mystery Diagnosis. However, I did some digging and really, with my very limited knowledge of anatomy and biology, it was all gobledy gook. I should have paid more attention in my Biology for Liberal Arts majors’ class in college, but, I did not.
Addison’s disease.
This one really does haunt me. It always pops up when I do my symptom searches AND it was the most recent illness on Mystery Diagnosis. Some of the additional symptoms are spot on – craving salty foods, irritability, moodiness, sleepiness, emotional distress, but as I continue to pick my symptoms, I can’t ignore that some are just wishful thinking. For example, who wouldn’t love to have “Underarm hair loss?” Or, my other 2 favorites, anorexia and collapse. Still, I do like pickles, so I will keep Addison’s on the short list.
Crohn’s Disease
This entry took me on a 15 minute journey into a tangled and frigtening web of symptoms, diagnoses, and heart-stopping fear. In fact, I got so freaked out, I decided to just shut down Google and accept that I am a little plump, tired because I am a mother and I work full time, and, frankly, just a little mean.

From the time I was little, I have just known there is some rationale explanation for all of my sneaky and elusive symptoms. One day, the web will lead me to the correct diagnosis. It will have to be the web, because the doctors I have seen over the years, the ones with their fancy blood tests and barium enemas, they just aren’t finding it. Slackers.

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