* history of carcinoid tumor
* fevers and night sweats
* joint pain and stiffness in hips, fingers, toes, ankles, knees, lower-back
* muscle weakness and aching
* radiating, burning pain in shins, thighs, arms
* extreme fatigue and shortness of breath
* abdomen discomfort, cramping, pressure, bloating
* nausea and vomiting (infrequent)
* hot rash over face and chest that comes and goes
* heart palpitations
* low blood pressure
* heart rate that drops with exercise
I just finished a series of RX Augmentin for a lingering ear and throat infection...but it did not have any affect on my other symptoms.
So here's the million dollar question - is it possible that the collection of symptoms could be a result of a syndrome and not a disease? The difference between the two is a little confusing.
A "disease" is a term that indicates a health condition that has a clearly defined reason behind it, while a "syndrome" is a kind of medical mystery - and can produce a number of symptoms without an identifiable cause. To muddy the waters even more, certain diseases can cause specific syndromes.
Carcinoid Cancer v. Carcinoid Syndrome
Carciniod cancer is an extremely rare disease, and a very small percentage of carcinoid cancer patients develop carcinoid syndrome, which have the following symptoms (% of patients affected)
Heart Valve Lesions (53%)
Peripheral Edema (19%)
March 22, 2011 (4 pm) - iphone pic
Out of all of those symptoms, I only have flushing (see above), cramping, and arthritis. In a few days, I'll have an echocardiogram to determine if I have heart valve lesions. I don't think I have carcinoid syndrome because usually if you have a midgut carciniod - the liver filters out the excess seritonine, which is the cause of the syndrome. If I do have the syndrome, that means that the carcinoid cancer has metastisized to my liver.
One of the things I don't understand is why none of my doctors have ordered a 5-HIAA test, which is used to determine if the carcinoid cancer has metastasized to the liver, most likely causing the syndrome. I guess that's another test I'll have to ask Dr. Nash about when I see him for my CT scan in April.