Needles & Goiters

And the award for best post title ever goes to….!

Not ME?!?!

You must be joking. Everyone wants to read a post about goiters. And since that is clearly the most exciting part of this post, let’s save that for last and start with needles. Yesterday, I returned to physical therapy for some more Trigger Point Dry Needling. As I mentioned on Tuesday, I have not been feeling great lately. I was beginning to lose hope about these super painful treatments, but I figured I started it and should stick it out. Yesterday was super fun because on my right calf, then hit a blood vessel.

See that bruise? Okay, so it's not as big and scary as I was expecting. I don't bruise very easily, but yesterday it was bleeding and that was kind of scary. Who knew needles could produce blood?

And on my left calf, hit some nerve that sent a tingling sensation in my foot and a burning sensation down my leg. Don’t be scared mom! I asked lots of questions and even though they’ve never done this before they said it’s totally normal 😉 I spent most of the afternoon walking like a freak with super tight calves which is always the case immediately after. But then I went to rehearsal, and for the first time in over a month I COULD DANCE WITH MY STUDENTS!!!! I don’t know if you realize how ridiculously difficult it is to teach choreography when you are having trouble with just walking around, but it is hard and painful and not fun. I didn’t even realize just how limited I have been until all of the sudden, I was able to actually move and it wasn’t hurting, and I felt happier and better physically than I have in over a month.

Then, this morning I got up and walked to the bathroom without stumbling!!! I’m always tentative and nervous to start moving in the morning because that’s when the pain is the worst, but this morning, I felt only slight stiffness AND I RAN YESTERDAY! And not just la la la look at the ducks and my snail pace run. I did a tempo run at my new half marathon goal pace (9 min/mi). The run was nothing too spectacular speed wise. I met my goal, and that was cool, but lately every single time I run, and often even if I don’t, the next day I feel absolutely awful. Yesterday I ran and danced and loved life and today I love life even more because I can walk, skip, jump and pick flowers while gazing at rays of sunshine 😀

Okay, now let’s talk about weird things like goiters. About 2 weeks ago, I went through a little bit of the crazies. I was dealing with crappy insurance changes, mistakes that were minor in the long run, but felt major at the time, and a stupid endocrinologist who I’ve always hated, but due to lack of communication, almost changed my prescription TWICE without having seen me in 3 months. If you have thyroid issues, you know just how crappy it feels when your dosage is wrong, so this obviously caused a ton of anxiety, and a few days of feeling like an emo teenager because I handle changes and lack of control about as well as those people on The Biggest Loser who spend hours crying in the gym because they have to train with a different trainer for the week.

Enough was enough, and I sought out a new specialist, and had an appointment within 2 weeks! I waited to get into Dr Brard’s office when I was diagnosed for 6 months. Ummm, listen Dr B, you suck and I wish I would have known that when I signed up for your stupid 6 month waiting list. So today I had my first appointment with a new endo that came pretty highly recommended. There aren’t very many of them in Phoenix and almost all of them come with super negative reviews. People are picky about their thyroids, and I don’t blame them.

I feel like this office was love at first site. The guy behind the desk was nice and friendly and didn’t mess anything up! Then the nurse laughed at my stupid jokes and didn’t seem annoyed by the fact that I refused to shut up or let her get a word in edge wise. Then the nice little assistant endo man asked a LOT more questions than I had ever been asked before, and noticed things that are associated with thyroid and still bothering me even with medication. Like the fact that my hands and feet are always freezing. Like as I type this, I wish I had mittens on. Then he asked if I had any stretch marks and I said “only from when I was fat” which prompted several more questions about my weight loss. He was nice. I liked him.

While I waited for the main doctor to come in, I started looking around the office, and they have all of these funny pictures.


He has a sense of humor! This place is just racking up the points in my book! Then the doctor came in and before he said anything, congratulated me on my weight loss. I guess his friend filled him in. It’s been so long now that I’ve been around the same weight, that I sometimes forget that I did something kind of cool, and lots of people would like to lose 75 lbs and never do. He seemed so impressed that I “get it” and mentioned that he sees people all the time that just never do. Thanks doc!

Then he felt around in my neck–let me tell you, this is the least fun thing (well that and all the blood drawing) about going to the thyroid doctor! I do not appreciate people touching my neck, and it always feels like I’m choking, but I mean that’s where the thyroid is, so whatev. Then he tells me “Yes, you have a goiter. It’s small, but firm.” To which I responded “LIKE THAT OLD WOMAN ON SEINFELD?!?!!??!

I can’t for the life of me figure out how to get the actual video on this post so you should click on this and watch it!

He knew what I was talking about which scored him more points, but I guess it’s very common with thyroid disease.

“Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is a more common cause of goiter formation in the US. This is a autoimmune condition in which there is destruction of the thyroid gland by one’s own immune system. As the gland becomes more damaged, it is less able to make adequate supplies of thyroid hormone. The pituitary gland senses a low thyroid hormone level and secretes more TSH to stimulate the thyroid. This stimulation causes the thyroid to grow, which may produce a goiter.”

Anyway, I guess the goiter is no big deal, and my meds should keep it from getting any bigger. They better, because my so sensitive best friend Jason made sure to let me know that if it got like the woman on Sein, that he wouldn’t be able to be seen with me anymore. Thanks Jas. So glad our friendship is based on such meaningful deep qualities 😉 I guess if it keeps growing I’ll just have to call Elaine, and ask her to do some volunteer work hanging out with me…

That’s all for now. Got new blood work today, and have to get more on Monday, but really I’m just thankful to have a doctor who seems like he gets it and is not a jerk face!


  1. says

    Ari, I was reading about how you received dry needling. I am almost finished with acupuncture and oriental medical school and am working on legislation with the state on the scope of practice of acupuncturists and physical therapists. We are trying really hard to stop physical therapists from dry needling because it is actually not in their scope of practice and they are performing “fake” acupuncture without a license. Acupuncture works wonders for a variety of ailments including both goitre and pain, but please visit a licensed acupuncturist for these treatments. You’ll get SUCH better results I promise! I just want you to be informed of what’s going on in legislation with this situation. Please email me or whatever if you have any more questions about things!!

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