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Suggest treatment for hives and welts in a person with Hashimoto's disease

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Posted on Thu, 23 Mar 2017
Question: I was diagnosed with Hashimoto's Disease in 2012. In my family history, it is common for women to develop ovarian cysts which I did experience in my late teens and 20's. In 2004, I went to see my PCP & told him that I believed I was going through early menopause. They ran some bloodwork but it came back in normal range. I followed up with my gynecologist and he completed bloodwork as well which he stated was normal also. I did not have any periods for at least a year. Unfortunately, when asked about my family history I my physician that my mother had 3 heart attacks and a stroke and died at age 49 of lung cancer. The stroke caused brain damage in the frontal lobe of the brain & they told us she had "organic brain syndrome and was given medication with serious side effects, later they also added that she was schizophrenic (this was where I made a huge mistake (she showed no signs of schizophrenia prior to the stroke and the psychotic behavior I believed was due to the medications she was given. I also made the fatal mistake of letting him know that my mother had a twin sister who also suffered mental problems but I did not believe they were related. My mother's sister was in a very abusive relationship and when she sought help for anxiety, etc. she was also put on medication with severe side effects that if not monitored regularly could make a person appear schizophrenic. As a result, my physician label me as "bipolor". At the time, I hadn't had a period in at least a year and was told it was because I was an athlete which I explained that I even though I was an athlete, I wasn't training like somebody who was on an Olympic team. I also explained that I was having hot flashes & other symptoms indicative of menopause but he did not believe me. At that time, I owned a martial art school and was in excellent shape, looked like an athlete and also had a great metabolism. I weighted 114 lbs. consistently for years. I was put on a medication for bipolar which resulted in a weight gain of 26 lbs. in 3 month & I now 140 lbs. My fitness was extremely important to my business and destroyed my self-image to people who respected how hard I worked to have a body of an athlete. My physician continued to put me on anti-depressants and blamed everything on stress even though the arteries in my arms and lower extremities were extremely visible. All he heard was the word "schizophrenic" which I will never say again at a physician's appointment and was convinced I was bipolar. I told a friend who worked as an anesthesiologist and she said there was no way I was bipolar. She had seen bipolar people and I did not resemble them in anyway. I never experienced manic behavior followed by depressive behavior He ignored the fact that my mother had 3 heart attacks and a stroke and 5 miscarriages and died at age 49 of lung cancer. As time went by, I was put on many anti-depressants because none of them ever worked. The side effects of these medications were also similar to the symptoms of early menopause. I felt like I was going crazy and I finally decided to wean myself off the anti-depressants and as a result I was no longer depressed. I take an herbal supplement for mild depression that works great without the side effects. The side effects that I did have added to the extreme anxiety I was experiencing from going through early menopause. I was given Xanax to help with the anxiety & unfortunately I developed a resistance to the medication and still take a high dosage which bothers me very much. I finally got fed up and went to the ER and told them that this was not me. They ran a bunch of tests and the nurse called me at home and said "You were right. You do have a medical problem & that's when I discovered I had Hashimoto's disease. I also found out that I was post menopausal. I apologize for the short story but I thought my history might help to get to the questions I have: I have read that extreme stress can cause a person with Hashimoto's disease to become symptomatic. I have been dealing with a tax audit for the past 6 years that has cost me $25,000 dollars due to a typo on my tax return. I was given the audit during the same time my symptoms were extremely high and found it difficult to concentrate and was experiencing medical anxity in addition to the other types of anxiety, My husband is also an alcoholic and with all the unfortunate events, it became much worse and he got a 2nd DUI, He's been to rehab twice and I supported him through each one and was able to manage things despite the 2nd place he went for rehab sent him home worse than when he went in, My main problem is that when I have to deal with the taxes, I experience migraines and severely muscle tension and spasms which is debilitating at times. I know the migraines and muscle spasms are directly related to taxes because when my husband had what appeared to be a stroke although the hospital said it was too grand mal seizures, I was able to take care of everything and the migraines and muscle spasms disappeared until I went back to try and resolve the tax audit. My concern now is that I'm not just getting migraines and muscles spasms but I started to experience hives as well. What really concerns me is that with the hives, I've also just started to develop welts and sores on my arms, face and hip. I even had a small blister filled with a clear fluid which eventually broke and developed a scab. Do you know if this is indicative of anything else? How concerned should I be?
doctor
Answered by Dr. Mirjeta Guni (1 hour later)
Brief Answer:
Some blood test needed for the hives;

Detailed Answer:
Hello and thank you for asking on HCM!
I have gone carefully through the detailed description of your medical history.
You are right, Hashimoto thyroiditis is an autoimmune disease and in most of the cases there is a stressful event triggering it.
But you should had a predisposition to develop it during the life.
The actual complains ( welts and hives) are not related to the chronic problems you mentioned.
The most common causes of them are certain foods, medications (neither xanax nor flexeril) or infections.
Internal disease may also be responsible.
The most common foods that cause hives are nuts, chocolate, fish, tomatoes, eggs, fresh berries, and milk.
You need some blood tests ( full blood count, ESR, proteine C reactive, Liver and function test) in order to exclude any infection or internal disease You need to see immediately a physician who will order the above exams.
Will be a pleasure to give a second opinion.
Kind regards,
Dr.Mirjeta


Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Kampana
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Follow up: Dr. Mirjeta Guni (14 hours later)
As I wrote, my husband is an alcoholic. Because of the all the damage it has caused, not to mention seeing him also die by falling backwards down the stairs, having grand mal seizures in the grocery store, etc. I refuse to be around him when he is drinking. I am dealing with a lot of stress right now because I need to turn my car in which I leased and my husband recently damaged it severely enough that the add'l insurance I purchase will not be able to cover it. I'm still dealing with IRS and he refuses to help me in any way. He won't even provide me records I need to protect our assets. He was out of work for a long time and we used up all of our savings. Before I got extremely ill by the medications given to me for an illness I did not have & never got treatment for early menopause or Hashimotos for almost 5 years. I used to run a martial arts school. My husband basically took it over when I became to ill to teach and refuses to provide me with information. I have a real estate license but until the audit is over, I don't think I can manage the paperwork involved not to mention there is not guarantee of being paid. In addition, it costs a lot of money to keep your license active and I can't afford to pay those fees without a guarantee of sales.
Because my husband was out of work and couldn't legally drive anymore, we traded in his vehicle which he also wrecked. Once he got a full-time job, and because he teaches at night which I prefer to him coming home and drinking, I pretty much became a "shut in" for a few months. He just got a used vehicle a few weeks ago which has broken down twice. I have great support from my friends but they all have their own families to take care of. I would get a divorce but I don't think I can hold down a full-time job and have insurance to cover my condition. Unfortunately, I have no family to help me. I've been told once I get the IRS mess over I will feel much better but for now it's difficult for me to even go to the store.
I've had a lawyer contact me about disability. I want to work but I need time to resolve these other things before I will feel confident enough to be in public again especially with how dark the arteries are on my arms are (which always alarms people when they see it) and is now spreading to other areas. These aren't hives. I had a ton of tests done but was told since I have light skin, that is why they are seen. I don't believe this (especially when my mother had 3 heart attacks and a stroke before the age of 45). What did you think of the photo I sent of my arm? Do you think I need to see a specialist for this? I'm concerned because when I get too anxious trying to handle things that are too much for one person, my chest feels like someone is sitting on it and that's when I feel I need to stop and lie down. My question basically is with my skin condition, Hashimotos and now unexplained sores which I will get more testing done, do you think I would have a case for disability (temporarily until I can get my health issues under control by taking care of the IRS, etc. I've always been a strong person until I started going through early menopause and never received treatment for it but was given medications that debilitated me at times. I know this is a lot of information but I need to be able to move forward with my life but I'm going to need time to get my health issues under control. Could you please give me your opinion? I'm sorry if I'm providing too much information. I'm just very scared right now because I don't have family I can stay with and there is a lot of work I need to do before I can sell my house if it comes to that. I appreciate your time in answering these questions for me. Thank you!
doctor
Answered by Dr. Mirjeta Guni (12 hours later)
Brief Answer:
The blood tests are very important:

Detailed Answer:
Sorry to learn about your bothersome situation but from the picture you attached i would suggest not to neglect it.
It may be a symptom of severe illness (such as vasculitis) but should be confirmed laboratorically.
If vasculitis is confirmed, you may profit disability.
Without a diagnosis is difficult to suggest it.
I can understand your actual situation but you have to find a way to do the above mentioned tests.

Wish you good health,
Kind regards,
Dr.Mirjeta


Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Remy Koshy
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Answered by
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Dr. Mirjeta Guni

Endocrinologist

Practicing since :2006

Answered : 2399 Questions

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Suggest treatment for hives and welts in a person with Hashimoto's disease

Brief Answer: Some blood test needed for the hives; Detailed Answer: Hello and thank you for asking on HCM! I have gone carefully through the detailed description of your medical history. You are right, Hashimoto thyroiditis is an autoimmune disease and in most of the cases there is a stressful event triggering it. But you should had a predisposition to develop it during the life. The actual complains ( welts and hives) are not related to the chronic problems you mentioned. The most common causes of them are certain foods, medications (neither xanax nor flexeril) or infections. Internal disease may also be responsible. The most common foods that cause hives are nuts, chocolate, fish, tomatoes, eggs, fresh berries, and milk. You need some blood tests ( full blood count, ESR, proteine C reactive, Liver and function test) in order to exclude any infection or internal disease You need to see immediately a physician who will order the above exams. Will be a pleasure to give a second opinion. Kind regards, Dr.Mirjeta