I just need some general advice and hope you don't mind me asking.
I've been feeling out of sorts for some years and am wondering what would be the best (first) steps to take in order to get a diagnosis and treatment.
My history (thyroid-wise) is as follows. I went to see Dr Peatfield in May 2010 and his opinion was that I was exhibiting a lot of thryroid symptoms. Tests by Genova came back in the normal range – I can't recall if that was the full thyroid profile, and as I understand it, they may not be an indication of what's happening on a cellular level. Candida was high and Adrenals were fatigued. As I seem to recall, the tests were urine and saliva – I don't remember giving a blood sample, but I may be mistaken.
Adrenal Extra, Q10 and Vitamin C were initially prescribed, with the plan that I'd go on to Nutri Thyroid after a few weeks, although I wasn't sure whether to proceed with the Thyroid given the subsequent "normal" result of the Genova test. If I'm honest, my treatment "fell by the wayside". At the time (summer 2010) I was frantically busy with work, having problems with my flat and also dealing with a very stressful family situation. I tried to ring Dr Peatfield and had trouble getting hold of him. He did call back but didn't have my results to hand, so we didn't go through them and I think I just felt so preoccupied (and foggy-brained!) that I didn't chase the follow-up as diligently as I should have. (Please note, I'm not blaming Dr P or trying to make excuses for my own laxity, just trying to provide a bit of context.)
In the interim, acupuncture has kept me ticking over, but in recent months, I've felt like I'm nosediving. My periods have been erratic (absent for five months from last April then back with varying degrees of "normality" and now stopping again, despite my using Serenity progesterone cream). I'm 45 this May so if I'm menopausal it's happened fairly early (I've got Mary Shomon's book on the subject on order!) and I'm just feeling generally rough. I live alone and work from home so I feel like perhaps it's been easier to "roll with" my symptoms (lunchtime naps, etc) than to address them. It's also made it easier to hide them from others, but that's becoming increasingly difficult too.
For instance, it took me about a week to recover from a three-day minibreak that involved a lot (though not an excessive amount) of walking. An evening out with a friend last week (no late night, one cocktail, about 2hrs walking and standing around) left me feeling so achy all over I had to soak in a bath and take painkillers when I got home, and yesterday, a 2-mile walk in the morning left me so achy and exhausted it pretty much wiped me out for the rest of the day.
Weight-wise I'm in the obese range. I've always been big though my weight has been fairly stable for about 10 years. I try to eat well but will have crisps (a lifelong weakness) a couple of times a week. No major sweet tooth, but I do crave carbohydrates. Often, I have very little appetite and will "forget" to eat until late evening.
GP is not an option. Unsympathetic and arrogant.
I also feel low-grade stress may be a factor. My main source of freelance income has diminished and may dry up completely, and although I'm supplementing this with other work, it doesn't pay as well and is for a friend who I worry about letting down. My main fear is that if the main job dries up, I don't know if I'll be able to cope with searching for and/or settling into a new one.
Sorry this is so long-winded – I've been reading so much that I feel I can't see the wood for the trees. Should I get more tests or go back to Dr P? (Or another practitioner based in or near London?) Thanks for "listening" and thanks in advance for any advice – welcomed with gratitude.