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Thyroid Disorders Community
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Avatar universal

Can anyone recommend an Endocrinologist in Southeast Michigan?

Hi, this is my first post in this forum.
Sorry if this is very long winded but I want to make a very clear mental picture of my situation.

I am a 36 year old Caucasian male, it has taken my current doctor 2 years to diagnosis my hyperthyroidism but I have been suffering from this condition for much, much longer than that.
I am unemployed and have no insurance, I have been told this is why it has taken so long to diagnosis.

I had my blood tested three times, twice by my regular doctor and once by the endocrinologist to confirm this condition.
My regular doctor charges $75 office visits and $250 blood tests, the endo was $300 for an office visit and almost $1000 for the same blood work.
So far I have spent over $2000 between the two doctors over several visits, blood tests, uptake scan and medications just for them to tell me "yep, there's something wrong with your Thyroid."

I am completely miserable and need relief.
I am not looking for a handout or a cut rate doctor for that matter.
I do however need to know, approximately,  how much the RAI I-131 treatment would cost me (cash, remember no ins) so I can start saving for this procedure.
I can't get this info from my EX-doctor because he's an ***, can you believe I can't get this info over the phone? He wants another $75 office visit to discuss the cost of this treatment.

This has cost me more time and money than I can afford to **** away.
I am tired of being jerked around and now ready to take action.
I wanted to ask the members of this forum if anyone can direct me to a reputable Doctor/Endocrinologist in Southeast Michigan, preferably in Macomb County.

If anyone could tell me what the expenses are before during and after I would really appreciate it.
If I had insurance this wouldn't be a problem but since I am unemployed and broke, I am stuck between the proverbial rock and hard place.

I cannot make it through a job interview let alone a meal without breaking into an uncontrollable sweat, so finding a job and waiting for insurance is not an option.
I'm done explaining to potential employers why I'm having a total meltdown and not a risk to hire, I can only imagine what they're thinking, like I might drop dead in the middle of the interview.
I am not wealthy but think that if I could sell my possessions I could come up with the money

I am also suffering from 90% if not more of the usual symptoms.
I have had a headache for the last 3 weeks, I have had a few that lasted closer to a month with no relief, but it's my heart that makes me start to panic.
Several times a day I feel like my heart has completely stopped for a split second then, in an instant, starts pounding like I just ran a 3 minute mile.
Daily I suffer with a feeling of total exhaustion complimented by feelings of extreme anxiety and deep dark bruiting depression.
I have difficulty sleeping. I lay in bed every night with a weak rapid pulse, very hard heartbeats and a feeling like someone is sitting on my chest. The fear this puts me in, like I'm going to die in my sleep, makes it nearly impossible to fall asleep.

I cannot continue this unsavory lifestyle, I need change and need it soon.
I appreciate the people whose stories, experiences and solutions have made me feel like less of an oddity.
It has been a long time but I have much hope to know again what "normal" feels like.

Thank you to all who care to listen to my story. ;0)
10 Responses
168348 tn?1379360675
WELCOME to the COMMUNITY!
Avatar universal
Still trying to come up with a suggestion for a doctor/endo in your area.  In the interim, here's another idea for your consideration.  It was a response to an email I sent to them.
  
Thank you for contacting the Macomb County Health Department.  The Health Department does not have general medical clinics to see and evaluate patients except for our STD and Family Planning Clinics.  I do have contact information for two Macomb medical providers who will evaluate, diagnose, treat and/or refer individuals without insurance:

#1:  Mt Clemens Regional Medical Outreach Clinic   (800) 741-4130
#2:  Neighbors Caring for Neighbors                        (586) 469-3750 in Mt. Clemens
                                                                                  (586) 677-3788 in Washington

You could also recommend to your friend that Macomb County has a low-cost insurance plan for those with low incomes that are not eligible for other medical coverage, that might be of help.  More information is available at:  Macomb Care Connect (866) 622-6620.

If you have questions, please contact me at any time.
Sue Tremonti MT(ASCP), C.I.C.
Public Health Services Coordinator
Disease Control Unit
(586) 783-8161

Does this sound like it is worth pursuing?
Avatar universal
When I was first diagnosed with a thyroid problem I went to Associated Endocrinologists located in West Bloomfield on Orchard Lake. They are associated with Beaumont Hospitals. When I was going there I was a young college student and I paid for the first office visit and then after that they said they would not charge me for the office visits, and they did that without me even asking them to. I do not know if they still do that for people or not, but if they did it for one then I am sure they do it for others, too. And they are really good doctors, too.
Avatar universal
Yes it's definitely worth pursuing.
Thank you for your reply.
I am currently checking with the DHS but the down side to the state/gov run programs is that you have to be denied by one before you can get accepted by the other, which can take some time before I could get treatment... I haven't started the process yet because I don't know if I can handle these feelings any longer.

I am still curious about the costs associated with this treatment in the event I don't qualify for any programs and have to pay out of pocket, I would like to be somewhat prepared.

I am very excited and hopeful that this will turn my life around as I have suffered from these symptoms as far back as I can remember, most of my life actually.
I had been dealing with it for so long that I thought that it was normal. I thought that a day of not feeling sick was just a bonus.

When I had a I-123 uptake scan done the doctor said that the 2hr uptake was 10.8% and my 24hr uptake was 65%, both of which were elevated.
The image scan showed "distribution of activity is unremarkable with no evidence of hot or cold nodule."
"The overall size of the thyroid gland is prominent with suggestion of mild enlargement of the thyroid gland."

Given this information and the experience of those that have had the RAI treatment, what opinions do you have regarding solutions for my problem?

Would I be a good candidate for RAI or should I look into other remedies for relief such as the anti-thyroid drugs or would that wind up being nothing more than a temporary solution?
I'm concerned about it being "enlarged". I don't know how bad of a thing that is.
Is an enlarged thyroid gland common?
Would this present any "future" problem or require removal at a later date?
I'm trying to understand the options I have and if there's a solution that covers all the bases as my doctor never discussed anything with me.

Many thanks in advance...
393685 tn?1425816122
Hi and welcome

PM a girl named Kipland on the forum here

She can help on this.
185634 tn?1257074739
First off, I'm so sorry that you've been suffering with this for so long.  As you read some of the posts out here, anxiety is huge with thyroid disorders.  Are you on any thyroid meds at all?  Anxiety meds?

Since you're unemployed/uninsured, can you apply for medicaid?  I wouldn't think they could deny you.  You definitely need to be seen.  My first thought is that you need some meds to get your thyroid levels under control, and also something for your anxiety.

I recommend that you check out U of M to find a doctor and treatment.  That's where I had my surgery and also where I do my yearly scans/RAI.  They're wonderful.  I can look through my paperwork and PM you with the cost of my RAI - but it may be different if you have no insurance (lower).  And I KNOW they treat people on medicaid because my niece had to have open heart surgery there and was in the hospital for a couple of months - and it was all covered.

Again, I'm so sorry that you're going through this.  You've definitely come to the right place for support.  Now you just need to get on the road to recovery with a good doctor.  I hope this helps, and don't hesitate to PM me if you have any further questions.  If I can help, I will!

Take care,
Lori
Avatar universal
Meds???
Ya I had some meds, let me tell you...
No thyroid meds though… My ex-doc called them anti-thyroid drugs and I only had one chance to take them because they were too toxic to take more than once.
After doing my own research about this matter I now believe my ex-doc was a total F***tard...
From now on I will do research myself to confirm any advice.

Like I said in a future post this guy has been treating me for 2 years...
I guess he was judging my sickness by my outward appearance. I guess I still look that good… lol

He kept telling me I'm fine and what I had been feeling was all in my head.
I'm curious, how many of us have heard that before???

After the third or fourth visit complaining of the same symptoms he simply said he would give me whatever I asked him to prescribe but until I had insurance all I was doing was masking the real problem.
It was like he wasn't even remotely interested in my condition till I had some "real money" for him to play with.

In the meantime he started my treatment with Vicodin 750's but that only gave me relief from my headaches… Well it put some "pep" in my step too... but that wasn't what I was looking for.

Next he tried Xanax but that only made me sleep like 15 hours a day and nothing more.

Then I was put on Effexor xr or something like that, which helped with the anxiety and made me feel like my days weren't numbered anymore, actually looking back now I didn’t give an F about anything while taking that stuff, but I still had heart palpitations.
I asked him to discontinue this evil stuff because it had CRAZY side effects and it also had a wonderful way to let you know if you missed a dose.

He switched me from the Effexor to Cymbalta but put me back on the Xanax "to help bridge the gap" as he put it. He said it wouldn't be a good idea to abruptly stop taking it so I went from taking one pill at a time to taking three pills at a time... Yay!!!

I took the Cymbalta but that didn't help with the palpitations so he started me on Atenolol which really helped with regulating my heart but ole' uncle "ED" dropped on by and wore out its welcome if ya know what I mean!!! Some of these new fangled meds are more like “cruel and unusual punishment”…

So at this point I was all whacked out on pills...
My body had no idea what was going on anymore...
I was having bizarre dreams and was getting very upset with the doctor since all he was doing was creating total havoc with my body's chemistry...

I went back one last time about the heart palpitations and the crazymaker that had been treating me was not in so I was seen by another more experienced doctor.
I say "more experienced" because when I explained what my body was doing he stopped what he was doing, turned to me and asked if I had ever been treated for a thyroid disorder.
It was like "Woah" someone actually knows what I'm talking about???

So he gave me an EKG just to calm me down and prove that I really didn't need a heart transplant... lol… I was really freaking out about the heart palpitations, NOT fun…
He took blood and I was told to not adjust any meds till the results and the other doc came back.

The results came back but the misinformed doc that had been treating me like a guinea pig needed to draw blood again to confirm the results he already had...
Since I'm easy going, and didn't think it would be a good idea to "go against the grain" with the person who could literally "bury his mistake", I went along and had blood work done again at my cost for the second time.

After I finally got my diagnosis that I was Hyperthyroid, I made another appointment to consult with that same doctor that actually knew what was going on with me.
I arrived on time, waited, then was seated but low ‘n behold, guess who popped in?
YEP!
You guessed it, doctor Jeckyl, so… I was like “I’m not here to seek your advice, I’m here to consult with Dr. so n so…”…
Can you believe he was like “Oh… he’s busy and won’t be able to see you”, what seems to be the problem now?
This guy was starting to act like a deranged idiot and I watch wayyyy to many of those court tv shows, and didn’t know if it was the anxiety or the meds, but I started thinking I had better leave before doctor jerkoff sticks me in the neck with a loaded syringe and tries sticking me in the trunk of his car… Yikes!!!  Does anyone else have problems like this or is it just me???

Sooooo… my way out of there was with a request for an appointment to see an endocrinologist and then made my getaway fast…

Now I go to see the endo and she says she has to make another withdrawal for the same blood work for the third time now… This is where my A** started to hurt because I felt like I was getting bent over for all this “so called” blood work…

Anyhow I felt like I had made some progress by talking to a specialist. She didn’t like the idea of me taking all the psychotropic drugs like the Effexor and Cymbalta so she said it would be a good idea to stop taking those meds and she also doubled up on the dosage of Atenolol. Which was just another invite for ole’ uncle “ED” again.

I read the other post about decreased desires, you girls think you have it bad when you can’t perform for your men??? Try dating while suffering with a thyroid disorder… I swear girls get psychotic and think there’s other women involved if I’m not in the mood. I try to be “straight-up, honest to god” but they think I’m a BS artist with all the medication and thyroid excuses… which is strangely funny… lmao…

Continued in next post...
Avatar universal
So the last time I spoke with my old doctors office I needed a refill on my meds but the doc refused to write a script for them in unless I made another office visit. This piece of paper would have cost me $75 plus another $140 for the actual medication. I thought this additional charge just to get my prescription script written up was out of line, so I said “to hell with doctors and all these damn pills” and I decided to abruptly quit ALL my meds “cold turkey”… let me tell ya… What a ride that was… Holy Mary mother of Joseph!!! o_0
I am not a drug user or a junkie but it took like 3 months to detox and get all that **** out of my system and let it readjust…
My advice to anyone taking any Effexor or Cymbalta, don’t ever stop taking them unless you absolutely have to… and don’t start taking them unless there’s no other option.
Google search “Cymbalta withdrawals”… OMG they are BRUTAL!!!

I have a brother that is a substance abuser and has been in and out of rehab all his life. He said what I had described to him sounded worse than any withdrawal symptom he ever encountered.
The “brain zaps” are exactly what you might expect them to be… Ahhh I’m so glad that’s over with… Oh yea… the doctors will never tell you about these horrible withdrawals, you need to research them before you become dependant on them.

Unfortunately most people, including myself, are in such need for relief that they completely overlook the effects as long as relief is a posibility…

So that sums up my experience with a pi*s poor doctor and the lousy meds he prescribed.
It also explains why I’m in pursuit of a good doctor.
The last one was no different than a “hack auto mechanic.”

You don’t need to feel sorry or apologize for me, feel sorry for the doctors/dope pushers that work for the pharmaceutical companies and not the people. They obviously forgot the oath they took about treating patients by priority of need not by how much they were capable of paying.

I happen to be one of the few that have had “repeated” bad treatment from not so good doctors. I don’t know why but it happened and now I have a very hard time trusting anything a doctor has to say.

I am no freeloader by any means. I was the owner of my own businesses but have fallen on very hard times. Besides my failing health I have also been a victim of fraud, I had a partner that was embezzling and for those reasons have lost nearly everything I’ve worked so hard for.
I’m now in the process of rebuilding my life but like my late grandmother always said, without your health you have nothing. She couldn’t have been more right…

I don’t know why I’m saying all of this now, I guess it’s more to do with pride and always taking care of myself rather than depending on anyone else to do it for me. It’s a real eye opener when the problem is beyond your control, a feeling of helplessness overcomes you.

With that said, I would really appreciate any info you could provide on the subject. If you could look over your paperwork and give me a rough idea of what to expect that would be fantastic. I do plan on filing some applications tomorrow morning and I’m grateful for the ideas and replies from everyone so far…

Sorry for another long winded post…
Thank you all…
185634 tn?1257074739
I'll send you the costs that I incurred while doing the RAI.  Keep in mind though, my situation was different that yours.  I had my thyroid removed, and they ended up giving me a very small amount of RAI to destroy any remaining thyroid tissue that was leftover - which was minimal.

I'm curious as to why you're looking into RAI, though.  Given the fact that you've never been on any thyroid medicine after being diagnosed, don't you think that should be the first step?  I agree with you in that all the other meds that they were giving you were to basically "putting a bandaid" on the original problem.  You may benefit from thyroid meds, and possibly something for your anxiety until you get your levels under control.

Speaking of, do you have your labs from all the bloodwork that you had done?  Even though we're not doctors, there are a lot of people out here that are good at reading the labs.  If you have them, please post them.



Avatar universal
Curious is the key word at the moment...

I'm seeking advice as of right now since Dr. As*clown told me the anti-thyroid meds were too toxic and hope of remission for hyperthyroid was for fools. I'm convinced he most likely got his degree from the back of a comic book, sorry but I get pi**ed off every time I think about that ****** bag getting paid for bad advice like that.

Anyways... I know what your saying about starting with the antithyroid meds as the first and most logical step. I wish the doctor I seen was that smart.

I would be interested in the antithyroid meds but don't want to go through any more bad side effects from anxiety meds.

Do you know which antithyroid meds are the most popular or best tolerated?
I was looking into methimazole but would like to hear from other members if this is a good choice.

I am interested in finding out more which is why I am seeking a better doctor. I was hoping to find someone local since I feel so exhausted all the time. I don't think I could handle the drive to Ann Arbor to go to U of M.

I wish I had the results of the labs, I only have one but it was very basic info.
TSH 0.2
FT4 3.0

Is there a list of side effects from hyperthyroid and how people were getting relief?
Just curious, maybe someone here could make like a sticky at the top of the page for people to add any good remedies they find.

It really ***** going through this in the dark and not having anyone to talk to about my symptoms with... Till now...

Thanks sooo much for your help...

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