Hypochondriacitis?

“You’re not a hypochondriac if you’re trying to convince yourself that you’re a hypochondriac.”

For the past month, I’ve been feeling fatigued, shaky, dizzy and have had bouts of vertigo. I’ve been going home after work, then crashing into bed for the rest of the night. I went to the doctor and she said nothing’s wrong except that my physical symptoms are being caused by depression. I’m not depressed at the moment and I’ve never had vertigo when I was in my severest depression so I think that’s a load of crap. However, I had a blood test that also checked my Lamictal levels and everything came back A-OK with an unusually high cholesterol level for a 25-year-old. (High cholesterol runs in my family so I’m at higher risk for heart disease, blah blah blah.) Despite the fact that science says I’m currently healthy, the way I feel says I’m not.

Anyway, I saw the Q&A below from the May 2007 issue of Shape magazine and related to it somewhat. I’m still not quite sure that my physical symptoms are manifesting through my depression when I haven’t been depressed for the past month.

“I’ve been tired and spacey lately and also started experiencing chronic headaches. My doctor says nothing’s wrong. Is it all in my head?”

No, there may be more going on than you or your doctor realizes. Headaches aren’t just caused by physical problems; they may also be a sign of depression. A new study at the University of Toledo found that women with chronic headaches, especially migraines, are 25 times more likely than other women to report symptoms of clinical depression. (emphasis not mine) Some other common signs include being unable to concentrate, gaining or losing weight suddenly, difficulty sleeping, or feeling fatigued, or losing interest in the things you usually love to do. But these symptoms may be overlooked during a medical 4evaluation, especially since many women don’t realize they should bring them up with their doctors. Twice as many women as men suffer from depression, yet nearly half of all cases go undiagnosed. If this sounds like you, make a doctor’s appointment to discuss any stressors in your life and their effects on your health.

Gina CuylerGina Cuyler, M.D., FACP, is a board-certified internist, instructor of clinical medicine at the University of Rochester Medical Center, and a fellow of the American College of Physicians.

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2 Comments

  1. Stephany said,

    April 18, 2007 at 1:34 am

    Feel better and damn I’m glad youre back!

  2. Gianna said,

    April 18, 2007 at 9:59 am

    I’ve been missing you too.
    I’m sure it’s not any consolation, but I’ve been dealing with symptoms such as yours ever since I’ve been on meds. And now that I’m withdrawing they’re even worse. I can honestly say I sympathize. Hang in there.


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