Have you ever received a diagnosis and thought, ‘OK, they figured out what’s wrong with me. Now what?’
The Doctors are here to tell you what to expect after the diagnosis!
Adrianna, 39, has been experiencing perimenopausal symptoms such as weight gain, night sweats, forgetfulness, moodiness and loss of her sex drive and energy for a year and a half. The average age for a perimenopause diagnosis is 45, and Dr. Lisa explains that she usually only diagnoses women with perimenopause after 40. While Adrianna is considered young to have it, endocrinologist Dr. Eva Cwynar, says, “Her problem is what many, many women face once they actually hit their late-30s, early-40s. The testosterone level starts going down, so their libido gets almost eliminated. The weight-gain starts, especially around the mid-abdominal area.”
What to expect: Perimenopause is usually treated with hormones. Dr. Cwynar will give Adrianna the hormones through a bioidentical cream, which replaces the estrogen or progesterone with compounds that are similar to those found in the body. Dr. Cwynar explains that Adrianna will begin to see results such as weight loss and the ability to sleep through the night within a month.
Diagnosis: Anemia during Pregnancy
Anemia occurs when blood lacks enough healthy red blood cells, and is the most common blood condition in the United States, affecting about 3.5 million Americans. Pregnant women are more susceptible to iron-deficiency anemia, due to increased blood supply demands. “Most of the women whom I treat become anemic during the pregnancy,” Dr. Lisa says. “It’s really, really common. And one of the reasons is because the blood volume, when you become pregnant, doubles.
“If you’re anemic for a long time, sometimes you can have a lower-birth-weight baby,” Dr. Lisa continues. “But really it doesn’t have so many problems with the infant as much as the mother afterwards, because a woman is going to lose blood in labor. If you already are behind in the [number] of red blood cells you have, you are at risk, if you lose blood, to needing a transfusion afterwards.”
What to expect: During pregnancy, women should increase their iron intake from 18mg to 30mg per day, and iron supplements are recommended. While added iron can cause constipation, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that all pregnant women take a daily supplement of iron as a preventative measure. “It’s not easy,” Dr. Lisa says. “But it’s extremely important.”
Diagnosis: Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when the median nerve is pressed or squeezed at the wrist and can be caused by illness, pregnancy, obesity and repetitive motions. The nerve controls sensations to the palm side of the thumb and fingers, and symptoms include numbness, tingling and burning in the palm and fingers. Women are three times more likely to suffer from it than men.
“Carpal tunnel syndrome is increasing because people are on their keyboards; they are doing so-called repetitive motions,” Dr. Ordon says. “We know that doing the same type of actions with your hands may lead to carpal tunnel syndrome.”
What to expect: Doctors use specific tests to diagnose carpal tunnel syndrome, including the Tinel test, where the doctor taps on the median nerve to see if a shock-like sensation occurs. You can treat carpal tunnel syndrome with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and by wearing hand braces. In severe cases, a surgical treatment releases the pressure from the carpal ligament. Using keyboards with wrist supports and doing wrist and finger exercises can help prevent carpal tunnel syndrome, as well.
Diagnosis: Hepatitis A
Hepatitis A is a contagious disease that causes inflammation of the liver. It is spread when you consume food or drinks that have been contaminated by the feces of an infected person. This can happen when people do not wash their hands properly after using the bathroom and then handle food. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and fever.
What to expect: Hepatitis A runs its course within a few weeks. To avoid spreading Hepatitis A, make sure to wash your hands properly and practice good hygiene. If you are exposed to it, a vaccine is available.