To be really worried there's something more sinister to this? Feel like I've failed DD(298 Posts)
This could be long, sorry. Have NCed. Not sure this is the right place to post but more traffic and want to know if I'm worrying over nothing.
A bit of background- DD is almost 18 and is yet to start her period. I took her to the GP when she was 14 as I was concerned she wasn't showing any real signs of starting to hit puberty and they put it down to she being small for her age combined with the amount of intense exercise she does- at the time she was doing 20ish hours of semi-professional dance school a week and was planning on a dance career, she's now doing 18 hours but no longer wants to dance professionally, although she's still dancing at the same intensity. To this day she's never really had typical teenage mood swings.
Over the last few weeks, since the new year maybe she's put on a lot of weight, she's always been tiny, very ballerina esque and it's almost like she's suddenly gone into the pre puberty baby fat stage but at 17. Her level of physical activity and diet haven't changed. She hasn't said anything but is clearly aware. She's meant to be at a half term dance intensive this week starting today but came and woke me up in the middle of the night- which she hasn't done since she was about 6- in tears with what she described as stomach ache 'down there' (potential sign period is about to start?) and begged me not to make her go today. I sent her back to bed with neurofen and a hot water bottle and told her she'd probably feel better in the morning, but I'm getting an overwhelming vibe from her she doesn't want to go.
She hasn't been herself for the last few weeks, she's last year of Sixth form, so applications for further education. She's had offers from all of her chosen universities back but was inconsolable last week as she's also been rejected from all of the specialist drama schools she applied for- the Ucas application was for another subject and intended as a back up as the specialist drama schools are so competitive. When she sent off the applications she was intending to take up the university place if she didn't get a drama school place, but now it's actually happened she's decided she doesn't want to go to university and wants to reapply for drama school next year. She's at an academic school and so not getting any offers for a chosen course is very unusual, I don't think it's been easy for her seeing all her friends getting excited about university and place offers knowing she's going to be reapplying next year. She's been really low and unhappy since then, again she hasn't said as much, but she clearly hasn't been happy.
Since January she's had fainting episodes/dizzy/temporary lost vision spells, and episodes of what DD describes as severe pins and needles, she's had it a few times in dance classes and had to sit out because she can't physically put weight on her leg. Her dance teacher put it down to stress, I'm starting to wonder if it's all somehow connected and I should have pushed harder for a proper examination before. Do I take her to the walk in centre or is that overreacting?
Right before Christmas it was 18.7, I don't know what she weighs now, I don't want to ask because I can tell she's upset already and I don't want to make it into a big deal IYSWIM. She's only 5''1 and I would guess she's put on just over a stone maybe, that's very much guessing though.
A stone is what, 14 lbs? That seems like a lot to put on since January. Has she put it on mostly in her stomach area, or all over?
If the intense pain continues, I'd take her in today, otherwise I'd get her an appointment with her regular doctor as soon as possible.
It is Steff13, this is why I'm hesitant to make it into a big deal because she must have noticed There has been absolutely no change to her diet or activity levels, which is what's worrying me. Some of it I think can be put down to puberty finally kickstarting, but not all of it.
Could the pain she's describing be period related? I've never had atrocious period pain so don't really have anything to compare it to.
She needs to see her GP unless her dance teacher is a doctor, really the dance teacher needs a talking to about making guesses so far beyond her knowledge base. Of course it may well be stress but your DD needs an expert opinion. I don't know why you are hesitating.
It is a terribly difficult time in your DDs life when her dreams are not coming to fruition, she will need a lot of support and kindness now the poor love.
All over, but more in the stomach area, if that makes sense.
Could she be/ have been anorexic?
I would take her to the GP. The lack of mensturating needs to be investigated at 18.
It must be so worrying, but a doctor will hopefully be able to give you some answers.
Could she be pregnant?
Agree she needs to go to a doctor. Could be stress and/or puberty but id get it checked out.
Definitely not anorexia, until this year she's always been naturally very slim- she would have been perfect ballerina body shape if only she grew a couple more inches. We were fobbed off last time with 'it's the dancing', I really don't want to put her through any more distress if we're just going to be told that again but then apart from anything else the pain and the dizzy/fainting episodes are worrying me.
Is she sexually active? I don't want to alarm you but could she be pregnant? I know she hasn't started her period but my friend fell pregnant at the age of 16 and hadn't had a period either, I'm not sure medically what had happened.
Or she could have pcos? I put on alot of weight very quickly with that.
JRmumma obviously I can't say definitely not but I would have thought very, very unlikely- I think you can get pregnant without having had a period?- but she's never had a boyfriend, always been very committed to school and drama/dancing. I honestly don't think she'd risk throwing everything away especially when she knows I got pregnant at 19- I hope, anyway.
Sorry- cross posts. Thick question here- what's pcos?
Has her loss of vision been investigated? It could easily be migraine but I know that this should be investigated in teens as it could be Optic Neutitis which is a major marker for ms, which would fit with the severe pins and needles.
It sounds as if your dd needs to see a doc for a detailed medical - there's so much going on here?
PCOS = polycystic ovary syndrome.
Another question - is there any chance she could be coeliac? Has she had digestive issues at all, especially bowel problems? Low level coeliac can go undiagnosed for years, but her small stature could be an indicator of coeliac disease (not necessarily of course!)
Karen it sounds as though your daughter is having a horrible time of things. 18.7 is underweight on the BMI index though and given the amount of exercise she does she is likely to have lean muscle contributing to her weight rather than body fat. Also you are guessing at how much she has put on recently. I am no doctor, but she needs to see one for you both.
I think you should take her to see a doctor. She does seem to have a combination of physical and mental issues that may or may not be inter-connected. I doubt very much you've failed your DD. I'm sure you've always done what you thought was best for her, just like you're trying to do now.
I expect her doctor will want to rule out pregnancy before any other tests anyway, but she certainly needs to see her gp.
Yes, definitely take her to the GP! Too much going on to not take her - write it all down and take her along, but you'll probably have to leave her to talk to the GP on her own, just in case she's doing something she doesn't want you to know about.
I don't think that you have failed her. She has a very driven personality, is a perfectionist I should think, and can't take failure. I would get her to a doctor to check her out as soon as possible.
A strange question but does her neck look 'normal'? Any extra folds of skin on her neck compared to yours/other people?
OP, that does sound like a worrying combination of things. On its own, not reaching puberty by the age of 18 would be worrying, but the sudden inexplicable weight gain, pins and needles, vision problems etc. sound alarming. I would get her to the GP without delay.
I was a very skinny teen and didn't start menstruating until I was 16, and it was painful. Flatchested & didn't wear a bra till I was 40. But I think at 18, a thorough check up might be needed. She sounds a young 18 at that. But I have a strapping tall DS who's no longer a teen (yikes, when did that happen?), so don't really know the ins & outs of daughters.
But the drama school thing -- I know a bit about that: there are literally thousands of moderately talented, moderately good-looking (and I'm sorry, & I hate it, but that is significant) 18 year old young women auditioning for the likes of LAMDA, RADA, and so on. They just won't get in, unless they are extraordinarily talented.
And I despair of the pressures that suggest they audition -- I don't mean parental! I blame things like The Voice, X Factor & so on, although as your daughter is a dancer she know that "fame" is never overnight, and she knows about the work and repetition needed. Good for her - she is far better equipped for life, because of her dance training, than most 18 year olds. But schools can be particularly bad about advising young people who don't fit the standard academic mould and want to go into the creative arts. So it might help to discuss a Plan B, and Plan C.
It would be better for her to take a year out than to go to any old university course as a very much second choice. It's too much like hard work if your heart's not in it . Those of us who teach at universities really find the students who are there because they (or their parents) feel they should be there, rather than because they want to be there, are the ones more likely to be the unsatisfactory students. If she wants to make the stage a career, her dance training will be a really good foundation -- she needs singing lessons, so she can hold a tune, and them lots of experience in am-dram, youth theatre, fringe theatre, whatever. Problem with amdram & youth theatre is that they both encourage bad habits & precociousness, so also getting some solid experience in fringe and experimental theatre would be good -- getting experience with small/medium contemporary theatre companies who make new theatre seriously would be great for her. She' see that people can make a life through taking art-making seriously!
good luck to you both.
OP, I just want to say: I can see you're worried about the university/drama school thing and all that stress-related stuff, but it's very easy to assume that the physical problems have a psychological cause when in fact things like pins and needles and vision problems can be the symptoms of something quite serious. Please do get her to a doctor as quickly as you can.
Yes, I agree - the diizzy/vision/pins and needles would indicate she needs to see a doctor. Hope she is OK.
Sounds like she is having a hard time at the moment.
Who is the most sympathetic, listener Dr at your practice? I'd make sure you book her to see a good, female dr rather than whoever is next on the list?
As a GP she needs to see a doctor re the physical side of things. As a mum of a daughter who is now at the musical theatre of her dreams tell her not to give up hope. At 17 my daughter was rejected from all the big London schools but managed to get on a foundation course for 2 years and is now in first year of her BA in London. There are thousands of applicants for these places but you can learn a great deal in 2 years.
I would second the foundation course suggestion. Students go out from those courses into all the top drama schools, with the added bonus of having loads of confidence and experience.
Aside from that, I know from my job that students audition some times for two or three years in a row and THEN get into the coveted schools...sometimes 18 year olds just aren't ready.
Medical issues are the most important of all though here and I hope you find some answers for your daughter.
She definitely needs to see a doctor.
At her school it might be usual to get accepted on your first choice/application but it is very unusual to get accepted at drama school on first application. Ds2 wants to go to drama school - I have made clear to him how very difficult it is. Whenever he's in a show we check out where all the actors went & their route to becoming an actor - so he gets an idea of the different ways into the business. There is more than one route. If she wants to reapply next year that's great - there are useful things she could do next year to improve her chances
But first she needs to get her health checked out. If she's noticed she will be worrying about it anyway & avoiding going up the doctors because you don't want to upset her won't mean she isn't worrying anyway.
She definitely needs to see a GP, and if you get fobbed off again (much less likely at 18 with no menstruation), you need to ask for a second opinion. If I were you, I'd be very much on the alert for eating disorders... Maybe she has been naturally slim (though I have to question how "natural" 20 hours a week of dancing is at any age), but if she's concluded that as the "right" way to be, and her body shape is changing, she could be at risk. At 5'1", a BMI of 18.7 indicates she weighed 99lbs... She could afford to gain 2.5 stone and still be within a healthy weight range... You really need to reassure her that she's every bit as beautiful at any size.
As for the university thing, I think her disinclination to take second best is fair enough. She is very young, and sounds young for her age. I know so many people who went to uni too young and failed to thrive, then took a year or two out, went back to it, and really blossomed. If she's not ready for an "all for the best" attitude, then there's no harm in doing something else for a year, and she might find things that help her with her primary aim: Like PP said, diversify her interests and skills; maybe try to get some relevant work experience that demonstrates her passion and commitment; or even just some unrelated life experience to leaven her artistic expression.
She needs to see a doctor, but it doesn't have to be today. I would advise a normal GP appt rather than drop-in, because she's going to need blood tests and an outpatient referral. If you can, ask for a double appt because it sounds like there are several issues.
I would take her to see a Doctor as soon as possible . I also know a few people who have gone down the career route your daughter wants and it is tough , learning to cope with rejection is hard at 18 but in that industry its essential . One person took two years to get in on auditions .
Brownsauce OP wasn't "fobbed off" last time. Her DD was 14 and small and doing masses of dance - the GP's advice was perfectly reasonable at the time. Of course things are different now.
Going from about 7 to 8 stone in a couple of months is a massive difference. She def. needs to see a doc. Surely at nearly 18 she's old enough to go by herself though.
though I have to question how "natural" 20 hours a week of dancing is at any age
Absolutely normal for a professional dancer, or for anyone who is training to become a professional (ie "Pre-pro"). Let's not question that, please. It's a very tough life to choose, and requires the kind of dedication the OP's DD has shown. I really feel for them both.
Hand to hold through this OP, it can be very distressing when your DC undergoes sudden changes, and periods etc are affected.
We have had our own ordeal (not the same thing exactly) so I've been reading a book called 'We Are Our Brains' by a leading Dutch neuroscientist (Dick Swaab). This struck a chord when I read your posts, Op:
(From page 88) " Before puberty, the brain registers whether tgere's sufficient fatty tissue by monitoring the amount of leptin, a hormone that's produced by fat cells. If the fat reserves are insufficient - because of an eating disorder, for instanve, or intense athletic training - leptin levels decline and puberty is delayed, sometimes for good. Similarly, mutations in the leptin gene can impede puberty and also cause extreme obesity. In such cases, the brain then blocks the onset of puberty because pregnancy would be too risky while also sending out a signal to eat copiously to make up fat reserves - unaware that it's merely leptin, not fat, that's lacking."
Obviously, not a diagnosis but it goes to show there could be something like this causing your DD's difficulties. (But I also know enough that it is by no means the only possibility and your daughter would need to have tests, maybe further investigations to discover the cause and best treatment.)
Another vote for the foundation course route here. The drama schools practically insist on it, partly because it ensures more funding for them imo. It's a very tough career path, and personally I'd do a normal (or drama-based) degree and then do post-grad at drama school, but if uni's not for her then a foundation course is the best use of the next year.
Sorry not to be more help with the medical side. Definitely see a GP.
She does need to see a doctor.
Definitely docs OP and do push it. As sensitive as she is about her weight, there's something underlying all this, so make sure you voice your concerns gently with her before taking her.
Bless her little heart, it's a hard time for her so lots of cuddles and reassurance needed. She sounds like such a dedicated little thing.
Make the appointment today and I agree with the pp about the dance instructor - one should never make health assumptions.
I don't want to cause any alarm but it really is worth a trip to the doctors. My friend had similar and it turned out to be a small tumour on the pituitary gland. It wasn't anything sinister like cancer(which is very rare), just disrupted her hormones, gave pcos symptoms and caused vision problems. I would really push for a referral with an endocrinologist. Her hormone levels do need to be checked.
The pain was gone this morning but DD was complaining of a headache which I dismissed as her not wanting to go to dancing, managed to get her a GP appointment in a cancellation slot this afternoon so told her she was going this morning and I would pick her up early for the appointment which she reluctantly agreed to. She hasn't missed a dance lesson without a fight since she was about 4, let alone not wanted to go. She then fainted and came round with blurred vision about an hour ago and I was asked to go and collect her. Weight still hasn't been discussed so I'm trying to work out how to bring it up at the GP appointment later without upsetting her.
The loss of vision has only ever been for short periods so we'd dismissed it as stress, admittedly she is doing too much at the moment. But in combination with everything else it doesn't look good does it?
Coeliac disease is possible, she had some minor bowel issues as a baby but that went away on its own and no problems since. I'll add it to my list of things to bring up.
She assures me there's absolutely no way she can be pregnant, I believe her.
Sparkly her neck looks normal.
OP, a friend of mine at school did a lot of gymnastics and this seemed to delay her puberty. When she finally did hit puberty, much later than most of her peers, (around 17/18) it happened very quickly, with her becoming very broad and growing boobs practically overnight. So this could be what is happening to explain the weight gain and period type pains. The other stuff sounds well worth investigating (well it all does, I'm just saying there might be a simple explanation for some of the things you mention).
so glad you are seeing the doctor today. Can I suggest that you write down all your concerns and give it to him to read, so that you won't embarrass your dd by saying it out loud. Print off your posts on this thread perhaps?
I suspect he will ask to see her by herself as she's 18 but if you've written down all you want to tell him then you'll feel like you've said everything. Good luck
She's not quite 18 yet, 18 in April.
We did know what we were getting into with drama school applications, DD has had a few professional theatre roles and has always coped well with failure in the past- I think it's that on top of everything else at the moment that's making it harder for her. School weren't involved in drama school applications, they were done through her theatre group. It's definitely not a case of school pushing her down a non-academic path, she's always been academic and has some great university offers, that's just not what she wants to do. She has fringe experience and grade 7 singing, going for grade 8 this term, so she's not going into this naive. She's looking into applying for foundation courses for next year, yes.
Oh she's too dedicated Welshmoth, she's a terrible perfectionist! It's a difficult one, trying to get the balance right between encouraging her and preparing her for things not working out the way she wants them to. She's much more sensitive than she lets on, that's what's worrying me.
Good to know it may just be the dancing that's delayed things, thanks eurochick. My sister reckons the pain DD had last night sounds like period pain without the period- possibly a sign it's about to start?
karenaanna, It all sounds very worrying for you and for your daughter. I have to ask - do you think there is any possibility of drug misuse here? Intense training is sometimes bolstered by mild to moderate drug use and it seem to be endemic across many sporting disciplines.
The large weight gain following or at the same time as the decision not to pursue professional dancing... that would be the time to also drop any 'supplements'.
I'm hoping that it is nothing of the sort but at least if your daughter is checked over you'll get to the problem area and that's a starting point.
Does your daughter have an appointment with her GP yet?
Ignore my question about GP - I see she has an appointment today, that's great. Hope it goes well, karenaanna.
It's bloody tough for then karenaanna - getting into drama school is so difficult. Maybe just keep reminding her that most people have to apply more than once/it's more competitive than medicine etc etc
Good luck at the docs
lyingwichinthewardrobe I wouldn't have thought she'd be that stupid, but I can't say absolutely not. The dance vs drama decision was made about a year ago now although DD has carried on almost all of the dance she was doing when she wanted to dance professionally, it's not a recent decision. Sorry, should have made that clearer before!
My worry with the weight gain is not so much that she's overweight, because I know she's not, it's the amount she's put on so quickly. That said, I don't think she knows that, and that worries me.
No advice but just saying I hope the gp appointment goes well and you can start to get to the bottom of it.
On the dram thing - I'm told that it's very hard to get in age 18, as they prefer older students who have some life experience.
Yes good luck. Vision problems are not a normal reaction to stress I dont think. Migraine or extreme tiredness maybe.
Lots of good ideas here. Lack of periods by 18 grants a test to check hormones. Increased weight recently together with previous picture might be hypothiroidism ? Would also cause tiredness and mild depressive symptoms, maybe ties in with not wanting lessons? Just another idea.
Extreme tiredness is a possibility- again, she's doing too much at the moment really. With the not wanting to go to dancing I do wonder if it's down to not wanting to be in a room of girls who are almost all going to go on to dance professionally when she's clearly struggling with body image at the moment- going to have to try and work out how to handle that one.
I will be asking for a hormone check.
OP you sound like a great mum, and I hope your GP is helpful. Can I second what someone said up thread about maybe writing down the symptoms. I know you're worried about talking about her weight might affect her body image, but I'd hate to think that stopped you both giving your GP all the symptoms. Good luck.
Migraine definitely a possibility especially if she's having hormonal changes. Hope it all works out for her.
Just popping in to say Good Luck. Hope you & your DD find a way through this. She sounds terrific.
PCOS = polycystic ovary syndrome.
That's what I think too OP, my period was 19. I couldn't walk, couldn't get out of bed the entire time. Weight gain round the stomach all a possibility too. Ovarian cycts can cause the belly to look distended too
*my first period
Hope the GP is helpful & she feels better soon
Right well I'm not sure we're really any further forward than she's definitely not pregnant, and we knew that already GP says there are a few things that are worrying her but equally could all be signs of her period about to start because of the pain she had last night, weight gain could be down to puberty etc. She's prescribed DD mefenamic acid which is meant to help with bad period pain apparently and wants us to come back if it doesn't settle down and she doesn't get her period in a few days and she'll refer her to a gynaecologist and investigate her hormone levels. The more I think about it now the more I'm kicking myself for not pushing harder for an immediate referral.
Well done karen, maybe an immediate referral would have been a good idea, but you are only talking about waiting a few days, I would certainly however make sure that you do not leave it any longer xxx Keep us up to date xx
YANBU to be concerned. I would encourage her to go the GP /Walk in centre today if the pain continues or to the regular doctor if they subside.
Please don't take any notice of the 'doctors' on here giving their opinions on possible diagnosis. However well intentioned, the internet is not the place to get a diagnosis and the people giving them on here are most likely about as medically qualified as my cat.
To those who want to to suggest a possible diagnosis - think before you post. Some of the conditions mentioned here have huge implications - have some sensitivity!
She's put on 19lbs since right before Christmas so she's still in the healthy BMI range for her height, but 19lbs in six weeks seems massive to me and she's only 5''1. The best way to describe it is the baby fat phase before puberty hits, she's always been very petite but suddenly is carrying a lot of weight on her belly, I hadn't seen her not in baggy tops for a while and was a bit shocked. It looks like she's been scratching herself, I haven't plucked up the courage to bring that one up yet. The GP was worried when she examined her that her belly is very swollen but didn't want to say it's not period related at this point so again bring her back if it gets any worse. She's been upset since we got back and has turned down an offer to go round to her friend's this evening and is up in her room No further dizziness/vision issues after this afternoon although she's already said she doesn't want to dance tomorrow. Not sure what to do really. I do feel I let her down not pushing for a referral there and then.
I agree with landrover you've only got to wait a few days for a referral and it makes sense to see if it is her period starting?
How is she tonight? Does she have any other symptoms that could be related to a period such as sore boobs or spots?
Could you ring & try & talk to the GP ( rather depends on the surgery) & say that having gone home you're actually really concerned & could you do the referral now.
My first thought is that she has been taking something to keep her weight down and periods at bay
19lb in 6 wksis alot, as her tummy is swolen and she has ther ssues, such as dizxiness and fainting etc I would want a referral.
Is her tummy painful to touch?
Any tummy problems such as constipation etc that may be making her bloated?
Cross post karanaanna 19lb is a lot....
You haven't let her down. You've ensured she is in the system which is really important and you obviously care really deeply for her.
Either speak to GP as saintly suggests or book an appointment tomorrow for Thursday so at least it is all booked in ready?
No other symptoms to suggest it's her period. She's barely eaten anything this evening, I can't get an answer as to whether it's because it hurts or because she doesn't want to eat because she feels fat. I don't think she'd realised how much weight she's put on numbers wise and understandably it's a big deal at this age Not sure whether to try and persuade her to dance tomorrow or not. DH is away this week which isn't helping.
5madthings she told the GP it was sore but that was then put down to it potentially being her period. I'm now feeling like a terrible mother because I hadn't even realised she was so bloated. No constipation, I'm going to try cutting wheat out of her diet and see if that makes a difference. My main worry at the moment is she just seems so unhappy.
Good suggestion pasta, I'll try and get her an appointment for Thursday first thing.
One thing to think of is a fairly rare condition of "imperforate hymen" where the periods have started but because the hymen doesn't have a hole in it the blood builds up in the vagina. Not sure if it causes abdominal bloating though. I have never seen it in 23 years of general practice so would need to google it again.
Just googled it and it can lead to abdominal swelling. Not sure if the GP looked at her in the vaginal area but would be worth another visit. It's a long shot but her BMI isn't too low for menstruation. Keep on it though and good luck with the drama schools. It's a tough life.
Musicaltheatremum that doesn't sound nice, is it easily treated? The GP didn't look at the vaginal area, no, she wanted to refer to a gynaecologist if her period doesn't come on in the next few days. Her BMI has gone from 18.7 to 23 in 6 weeks, it sounds a bit scary put like that really
One of my sisters had the same thing happen, it just sounds to me like she's hitting puberty all ova sudden. I'd try not to worry and wait for referral
I was thinking the same as musicaltheatremum. It's rare but not ridiculously so (one of my friends had this).
I second the suggestion to book an appointment for this tomorrow, preferably with the same doctor. You can always cancel it if her period comes in the meantime
i agree that is extreme weight gain.
i would maybe pushfor some blood tests to rule out any hormonal or thyroid issues that can cause weight gain?
I agree with what others are saying about the weight gain. It does seem very sudden. I hope you get some answers soon. I'm sure it's very worrying for both of you.
Well I haven't managed to persuade her to eat anything so that's the dance tomorrow problem solved.
Thanks layl77, that's reassuring. I was planning on pushing for blood tests today but I chickened out, I'll be firmer next time.
My main concern is that she's so withdrawn. Puberty is crap enough normally, let alone when all your friends have got the awkward bit out the way and you're only just starting.
OP, your daughter needs a doctor.
How do you think a bunch of strangers on the internet are going to help you.
Go to the doctor. If the doctor won't listen, go to another doctor or a walk in clinic or family planning. I would be extremely worried that she has some kind of vaginal obstruction tbh, given fainting episode as well as pain and sudden weight gain, and lack of menstruation (surely lack of menstruation alone is cause for referral in 18yo?! Your doctor sounds really crap!)
Hope GP appt goes well, take a urine sample as they will definitely want to do a pregnancy test.
Damnbamboo rtft. The op has been to a doctor and is going to go back!
Damn have you read the thread? OP has been told by doctors not to worry so she is seeking further advice.
damnbamoo I have, and I'm taking her back as I'm not happy with the verdict. In the meantime I have an extremely withdrawn teenager and I'm trying to work out how to help her because the GP most certainly didn't.
fudge that's what I would have thought, it would be if it wasn't for all the dancing she does apparently
this sounds awful, my heart breaks for her because she sounds like she's been so dedicated and hasn't been rewarded. The symptoms sound terrible too, I would definitely try getting her back in front of a doctor if at all possible.
I'm starting to think she's much more uncomfortable than she's letting on I will be booking the first doctors appointment I can, I can't put her through much more of this. Still no sign of period.
I am getting a bit of a bad feeling about this, OP
If she worsens in the night, please take her straight to A+E
OP sorry you and dd are having such a horrible time. I would be back at gp in the morning demanding further invedtigation. This really needs checking .
OP sometimes I've found an effective tactic when going to see a GP in a situation like this is to say that you can see that the symptoms fit xx, yy and zz conditions (so insert the main ones that have been suggested on here and that you are personally worried about) and to get them to say why they are not those conditions.
I can see why the doctor might have thought it was a good idea to see if it was your dd's first period to rule that out before doing anything else.
BUT - say she had already started her period and it was a non-issue, and your dd had gone to the doctor saying she had had not one but several fainting spells, dizziness, temporary loss of vision, pins and needles - would the GP really have sent her away to see if her time of the month made any difference to those symptoms? I'm guessing not.
And whilst the two may be related, they might not. Puberty at 18, although later than most, is at least a normal thing for a girl to go through. But fainting, dizziness, loss of vision, pins and needles - are not normal at any age and would really worry me (as a mum - I'm not a doctor).
I used to be really skinny and suddenly put on a lot of weight - over a stone in a month, and then more but not quite as rapidly. Although I was a bit older than your dd so puberty wasn't an issue, when I went to the doctor initially I got fobbed off and told I was wasting their time because I was so skinny beforehand that I was now a healthy weight and therefore I should just be grateful and stop complaining. They didn't get that it wasn't the weight I was that bothered me, it was the sudden rapid weight gain when nothing else had changed that worried me (particularly as my mum has thyroid issues so I'd always been told to be on the look out for these sort of symptoms). It took me 7 years (plus a switched on osteopath and a locum doctor) to get the diagnosis; chances are if I had known what to ask for the first (or second, third, etc) time I went, the GP might have at least stopped to consider it as an option rather than seeing somebody they thought wanted a quick way to lose weight (which wasn't what I wanted at all). In a more extreme example, the local hospital here was recently in the news because a teenager with cystic fibrosis died in a&e from meningitis - she had been to the GP, who had diagnosed meningitis, sent her as an emergency case to the hospital, but because she went there quite a bit due to her CF symptoms (and she wasn't having any obvious CF symptoms), they looked at her chart, saw CF, said she didn't seem to be having any problems and turned her into a low priority CF case rather than an urgent meningitis case. She kept asking them for help, trying to show them the rash but they kept saying they were busy and she would be fine to wait. Horrendous - and all because they saw what they expected to see and didn't bother to look beyond at the other info they would have done if it was any other person presenting with those symptoms.
I'm not saying this as I think that your dd has PCOS (although as others have said it is something that is worth getting crossed off the list) - but I would definitely be going back to the gp and getting them to look at the other symptoms she has as a matter of urgency as they would do if she hadn't gone in with the potential first period to cloud the issue.
19lbs is a lot of weight in such a short space of time, I doubt it would be puppy fat. To be hobest I wouldn't be that bothered about bringing it up in front of her to any dr. They need to know everything, and this is a sympton.
I hope you get some answers soon.
If she fainted and complained about pains again I would take her to A&E.
I am sensing ectopic pregnancy
I believe the pg test can be negative in some cases
My (tiny) mother had what must have been imperforate hymen (she called it something else!) until the age of about 15 or 16. Very simply treated, I believe, even back then, but she apparently swelled like a balloon before they worked out what it was.
I was thinking that AF, but I think blood pressure, temp etc would also be indicators (which gp probably checked today) and I'm sure it's common enough for the gp to be looking out for.
Op, you sound like a lovely mum and I hope you get to the bottom of it soon. Like others have said, don't be scared to kick up a fuss if you feel you're not being listened to. I suffered with endo for years without a diagnosis and I wish I'd taken my mum to a few appointments so that someone could kick ass on my behalf!
Dont make her dance if shes feeling this shitty.
The last thing she needs at the minute is mirrors and lycra and other tiny women.
Its a big year, she may well need some proper down time and sleep, especially since shes been fainting, whether thats due to anxiety or starvation or a physical illness, something is wrong.
My first thought was pcos or that hymen thing (didn't know what it was called though i knew what it did though).
Also possibly pelvis inflammatory disease? I know that's often connected to STDs (so i was told) but ive never had an STD and i had it, it was horrible and the pain was like labour contractions at its worst point. My periods had stopped but i was irregular anyway sso that didn't raise alarmbells initially, until they gave me antibiotics (iv) then i came on within 24 hours and my stomach was swollen badly like i was in the early stages of getting a pregnancy bump.
I fainted too but not sure if that was just because of the sheer pain.
Hope you get some answers, if she faints again go to a&e
DD assures me she hasn't had sex, I believe her. Oh a massive fuss is going to be kicked up at the next doctor's appointment I can get, trust me!
I don't know whether to go and check up on her or leave her be.
I think you should check on her if you're at all anxious. It does sound like she's in a bit of a state. What makes you think she's in more pain than she is telling you?
would you gain 19 pounds from an ectopic pregnancy though? You'd have to be pretty far along in a pregnancy to get to 19 pounds and din't think ectopics could work that way? I might be talking bullshit though
Check on her. She probably doesn't need it, but it sounds like you do. Take it easy on yourself.
Go and check on her and give her a huge cuddle.
Must be so scary and she's got so much to worry about.
If you need any help re college/uni applications, please PM me and I'm happy to take a look. I've been a sixth form tutor in the past and have seen a lot. I'm not an expert, but I'm happy to be another pair of eyes.
Can she sleep in your bed with you for the night?
Kick your partner out if you have one.
OP please do check on her. The fainting and blurred vision does worry me more than the weight gain. She really needs bloods and further tests and no more silly GP nonsense. This is clearly something a specialist should gap deal with.
19lb since Christmas cannot be fat. Something else is going on (I am not a doctor btw).
Please remember that there may be lots of reasons that could make it difficult for a teen to tell her mother she has had sex. Your DD may be embarrassed, or in denial, or ashamed, or confused (some youngsters do not fully understand what counts as sex, or don't think the first time counts etc). Please keep an open mind - don't rule out an ectopic pregnancy - and do take DD to A & E if she gets a lot worse in the night. I am so glad you will be pitching up at the GPs tomorrow. I hope your DD feels better soon.
I would check on her.
I would check on her, with whatever comfort in hand I could muster (hot chocolate/chamomile tea?). Even if she is prickly and grumpy, at some level your concern will register and she will know that you're thinking about her.
Good luck - I hope you get some answers and that she feels better soon.
How worrying, hope you get answers soon as to what is wrong.
I'd be inclined to bring her to a and e if she gets any worse. Even if she was better tomorrow, I'd push for full tests.
The gp did a pregnancy test. At least I presume that's what the op meant when she said that the gp was able to rule out pregnancy.
An ectopic pregnancy, at the stage where it was causing fainting dizziness and abdominal pain would have a positive pregnancy test (although a previous poster is right that early on the test can be negative). So this is highly unlikely. And I am a doctor.
So while I agree you should check on her don't panic about an ectopic. And yes, take her to the gp in the morning or to a and e if things get worse. But try not to panic.
Please also make sure they test her thyroid.
When I was 21 I put on that amount of weight in a similar period of time and had a lot of similar symptoms. It took me a further two years to be diagnoses with a thyroid problem mainly because the thyroid normal levels are not consistent across the board. Please get all her thyroid hormones checked (ALL of them - insist on it as some labs will only do some even if requested) and double check the blood level results with a thyroid patient advocate website such as Mary Shomon's. Don't just accept it if they tell you her thyroid is 'normal'.
I'm maybe projecting my own experience here but the symptoms of fainting, blurred vision, extreme pins and needles and the tiredness really could point to a brain/nervous system (neurological) problem.
At her age it's unlikely she'd get a paediatric referral but I think you really need to kick arse at the GP (and I say that being married to one of them!) looking for general medicine, obstetric and neurology referrals. There are so many symptoms here they really need sorting.
Also wondering (in the nicest possible way) if psychiatric/psychological help might be needed. From all you've said, she sounds very unhappy and is there a chance she's depressed? It can cause rapid weight changes, both loss and gain..
Gosh it sounds like your DD & of course you are going through a grim time. I have a DD the same age. Just wanted to offer a hand to hold.
If she is short and has no periods it could be Turner Syndrome possibly too. I think you need to ask for a referral to an endocrinologist, insist on one.
I've just spoken to my dh (on call GP tonight in his area - it's quiet for now!!).
Clearly you don't know me or him and I could easily be hairy of hand ( ) but he really thinks you need to go back tomorrow (ooh won't be helpful tonight) and request neuro and gynae referrals. If GP won't, go to A&E.
I really hope it's nothing. He says MS, other rarer neuro stuff, ovarian cysts and potential ectopic come to mind. If her pain becomes acute or she faints again, straight to casualty.
I'm not interfering but it is worrying. Hoping it's all ok x
Are you able to help her manage the pain tonight? I hope you are both ok and have a better result with the GP tomorrow, it's exhausting trying to fight someone who supposedly knows best, but she is your daughter and you will be the best judge of any deterioration.
Thinking of you both.
have you checked on her, OP ?
Op please ignore all the many and varied 'you must insist on....' comments on this thread from non medics. Go back to your gp. Explain your concerns. Insist that they take your concerns seriously and refer her to whomever they think most appropriate. But honestly going in and asking for a referral to 5 or 6 specialities is pointless. Be firm that you are not happy and want more to be done, but let them do their job and assess her and decide what is most appropriate. Because they are a qualified medical professional, who is actually seeing your dd, and actually will have her best interests at heart.
They are not either a doctor who hasn't seen her (like me or weegie's dh) or a random stranger with no medical qualifications who had never met your dd like most others on this thread.
Some of them might be right about what is wrong but what you want is your gp to look at her with an open mind. Good luck x
I would be worried about Turners, a mosaic form if she has no 'typical' characteristics and I would have her seen tomorrow (or now if she is in pain). I would be concerned about germ cell tumours (more common in girls with Turners).
It's probably not, it's very rare, but given the lack of periods it is a possibility.
I have been wondering about turner syndrome too. Sometimes this is how it is diagnosed, when puberty doesn't quite arrive. Hand holding here too op. I have pcos and endometriosis and the pain is excruciating. I often faint from it. So do be open minded to the fact that the pain may be so much worse than you think.
She's asleep, I've given her a cuddle. Honestly I just don't think she wants a massive fuss made about this, I think she's ashamed. ProfPlum that's exactly what I think, there's no way 19lbs in 6 weeks can be just fat. But alas, she's a teenager. Obviously I don't know for sure but I really don't think she's lying to me about not being sexually active. That's just my gut feeling though.
LittleTurkish thanks so much for your kind offer, she has offers from all her universities [insert proud mummy emotion]
Turner syndrome is unlikely I would have thought, I know she's short but I'm not quite 5'' and none of either side of the family is tall. I will ask about it though.
DH is working away this week but having been filled in he reckons she's under too much stress and that's part of the problem (which is what we told her school when they piled more responsibility on her this year but that's another issue!)
Is it a bit obsessive to keep checking in on her?
You check on her as much as you like x
Sorry that I didn't see this thread earlier - she has 'primary amenorrhea' and there are a few causes of this, all of which must be investigated thoroughly with some reasonably simple tests
>The most common cause of this is constitutional delay, ie
delayed start to puberty - has she met all the other stages of puberty (look up tanner staging) eg does she have breasts, body hair. Do you have a family history of delayed puberty?
>She may have a hypothalamic or pituitary disorder - leading to decreased synthesis of the hormones FSH and LH ;and hypogonadotrophic hypogonadism. Exampes of such a disorder would be hypopituitarism, or a prolactinoma
Anorexia Nervosa will also have this same effect
> She may have an ovarian disorder, resulting I decreased synthesis of oestrogena nd progesterone, this will cause increased FSH and LH and hypergonadotrophic hypogonadism. This would happen in a condition such as Turner syndrome, or with an ovarian malformation
> She may have imperforate hymen - this is actually v common, and is where the blood is unable to escape from her vagina and backs up behind the hymen. Here all FSH LH oestrogen and progesterone levels are normal. It is easy to fix, and the fact she hasn't had sex means this really is a strong possibility.
Something as well, but much rarer, is RKH syndrome /MRKH syndrome, a problem with the structure of her uterus ovaries or vagina
- and before you dismiss the anorexia, I am afraid that being a low body weight and exercising excessively will actually induce the same amenorrhea - symptoms, this would also account for a sudden weight gain if her eating or anything changed as it can lead to residual problems with thyroid function etc. It would also account for her fainting and visual disturbances.
Another worry re the visual field issues is whether there is a pituitary adenoma or similar compressing, but it would usually start differently to this.
I think imperforate hymen or a lifestyle/ body weight and structure related delay are actually quite likely here to account for a delay.
If that is the case then it's easily treatable. wish you well OP and yes you do need a gynae referral absolutely
But agree with upthread, your GP will want to help her so don't go guns blazing -
19lbs is actually only a stone and a bit it sounds a lot but I easily gain that much in that time frame - also be wary of a teenager's confessions re sex/ definitions thereof
Hope you get to the bottom of it soon but try not to panic there are all sorts of things it could be and it may I feel just be a delayed puberty because of exercising and low body weight
Check on her as much as you liked op. Sleep on her floor or in her bed if you want. I have a slightly unsettled toddler tonight and intend to do the same
An ectopic pregnancy, at the stage where it was causing fainting dizziness and abdominal pain would have a positive pregnancy test (although a previous poster is right that early on the test can be negative). So this is highly unlikely. And I am a doctor.
I had an ectopic and my surgeon said i was an incredible rarity because mine had ruptured and i hadn't been dizzy or fainted etc.
My pregnancy test was negative BUT my blood level was well over 1000 so they said they thought it was just me (the same happened with my daughter, bloods over 1000, baby there on scan, negative pee tests).
Anyway i think if it were an ectopic pregnancy and the symptoms had started over a few weeks ago it would be serious by now. Mine progressed in four days from a pain similar to a pulled muscle (Which is what i thought i'd done originally, as coincidentally, the pain started during training after a horse had tried to chuck me off and failed) to full on, screaming in agony, begging for death (It was horrific). The pain wasn't 'down there' either, it was in my side, Quite high up as i remember it. Near the top of my hip bone.
I had also started bleeding, but because i was on the injection i put it down to that causing irregular periods and hadn't thought about missing one the month before.
I really don't think your daughter is having an ectopic pregnancy. I think you'd know about it if she was by now.
Despite the dancing, I wonder if it could be an unperforated hymen too. Despite lots of bike riding, and over three years (from 15 to 18) of doing a martial art that placed a high importance on being able to kick above your head (I could do the splits, even), I still had a hymen at 18, albeit with natual perforation. In fact, the thing was so stretchy, it didn't break until the second time I had sex!
I think ask the gp for a referral to an endocrinologist and in the nicest way just say you are worried dd might be diabetic or hypothyroid and could the gp check for both while dd is waiting to see the endocrinologist. My own dd got v weepy and put on weight and was thought to be depressed until the penny dropped and it turned out she was seriously hypothyroid and I still feel guilty at how long it took us to realise it wasn't our fault she was weepy and that she actually had something wrong with her.
I really hope today brings some answers for you both.
I think you need to let your GP do their job and refer you to the most appropriate person, not go in asking for referrals to lots of different places.
Hope you get some answers, OP.
I hope you get some answers today OP. Have been up feeling ill in the night, and thought about you and your DD lots.
OK this morning OP? Hope she had a relatively good night, considering. I was thinking, if it IS just stress, could you suggest doing something completely removed from dancing and pressure to get in to drama school etc.? Go shopping, coffee, the beach for fish and chips and ice cream? Simple stuff but might help her unwind?
Despite YellowDinosaurs rather arrogant post I still think you should be pushing for a referral for gynae and endocrinological investigation.
I might take YellowDinosaur much more seriously if I didn't work in a hospital department concerning these which regularly deals with the consequences of patients who've been fobbed off by GPs for so long it has seriously compounded their conditions.
Has anybody suggested an ovarian cyst? I had a quick browse and didn't see it mentioned, but they can cause weight gain, absent periods, fatigue and pelvic pain.
Her GP has asked her to wait a couple of day not months.
So far well meaning mumsnetters have suggested referrals to:
I've lost count of the number of different conditions it has been suggested she has - PCOS, MS, adenoma, diabetes, optic neuritis, anorexia, pregnancy, ectopic pregnancy, coeliac disease, pituitary tumour, hypothyroidism, migraine, vaginal obstruction, PID, Turners Syndrome, ovarian cysts
Imagine how frightening that would be if that was your daughter.
Seriously please leave the job to the doctors.
I think bigbopeep has made the best suggestion for today. Go out for the day together if you can. Whatever she likes doing that isn't dancing or school work.
You've said you're going to make another dr appointment and I guess you've done by now so thinking about something else is an excellent suggestion IMO.
Leaving the job to the doctors meant I was very ill for two years with an undiagnosed thyroid problem that would have been easily rectified earlier with mediation if be doctor were not using antiquated 'normal ranges' for blood tests as many of them still are. Despite putting on three stone in less than 4 months and being very depressed and teary with a bulging neck! I was told to go on a diet and do some exercise. OP was asking for advice and support and got it. Yes there have been a lot of suggestions and most of us are not doctors but unfortunately it appears not all of us have had great doctors and whilst OP might be lucky and have a great doctor it's also good to do some research yourself.
One thing i did wonder OP is how often is DD sitting out in her dance class ? If her body has been used a certain level of exercise and then she has say halved that by sitting out in 2 or 3 sessions , then i would imagine she would easily gain weight , even 19llbs which is a bit over a stone . Given that i and plenty of people i know can put on 7 llbs on a weeks holiday , i dont think a weight gain of 2 or 3 llbs a week is dramatic . Just a thought .
But the OP has been waiting less than 24 hours, not 2 years.
I hope you find out soon what is doing this.
Your poor dd.
I hope you find out soon what is doing this.
Your poor dd.
Also at her age i would gain between 5 and 7 llbs the week before i started my period , once it started i would pee for England for about two days and then by the end of seven days have lost the lot . I am not suggesting that the whole 19llbs is water rentention , but a combination of that and a possible decrease in her excercise level could explain the weight gain . She has been going to all the dance classes i take it ?
Obviously i am not a doctor , but i was trying to think of a less sinister reason for the weight gain than those that have already been suggested . Hope you get the answers you need .
she will also need full bloods including Us&Es she may have a quite serious electrolyte imbalance
gynae/endo as a first off but bloods first. gynae if structural, endo if hormonal, and neuro if not to rule it all out. then explore other reasons such as psych. I don't think anyoe is trying to scare OP rather hold her hand and shed some light as to the myriad of conditions it could be - when all along it could of course be just some delay in starting periods in the setting of stress etc.
is there any chance she is taking laxatives or diuretics at all OP? these can account for blurred vision pins and needles and sudden weight gains
reassure her and have faith in her medical team they will explore the possibilities
Cafecito- I'm sorry but I don't agree that armchair diagnosis by non-medical people is all they helpful.
Lists of specialists and tests that must be done are for the Doctors to decide, not somebody that she has never met with no qualifications. The OP had seen the GP and is going back. The doctor needs to deal with it. Support from mumsnet is great, but I feel that this has got to the point of being quite damaging.
I am sorry I have nothing useful to add OP, but I just wanted to say that you sound like a great Mum, and I hope things are sorted soon for your DD.
Right, I have a doctor's appointment for Thursday morning. DD has seemed very depressed this morning, she's admitted to me she's been scratching herself because she's so disgusted with herself and doesn't want to go to her dance class because she feels so self conscious. Not really sure what to do with her Still no sign of her period. I'm struggling to get her to eat anything but don't know if that's because she still feels so bloated or because she's put on so much weight.
The sitting out of dancing I don't think is enough to account for the weight gain- this week is the first time she's not wanted to go, normally I can't get her to miss dancing when she's ill. She's always joined back in after a few minutes.
There is a lot going on here
OP, you seem to have been a bit reticent when talking to the doctor before, to spare your dd's feelings ? I think now is the time to get everything out in the open.
I'd be wanting to exclude an ovarian cyst and an imperforate hymen, so would want the Gp to do a gentle but thorough examination/ and or refer for an ultrasound.
On the drama school issue, I can feel for you, my DD is a year behind yours but totally conflicted about Uni/drama school ( head/heart thing)
An awful lot of hugely successful actors went to Uni and then did post grads in acting or like Emma Thomson went straight on to perform... Benedict Cumberbatch, Olivia Coleman, Naomie Harris etc
Do any of her Uni offers have fantastic drama societies, they take productions to Edinburgh and all over, could that be an option?
No more time wasted than a year out to reapply
Sorry if done but is she pregnant?
Couldn't agree more with borchestershireblue's part. Spot on.
Op hope you get some answers and help for your daughter on Thursday from qualified medical professionals
Seasicksal with respect if you work in a hospital department dealing with missed diagnoses and cock ups your view isn't exactly going to be balanced. Of course these things happen, I'm not denying it, but they are actually not that common. And almost always happen because a doctor has made a genuine mistake because they are human beings not machines. Not because they can't be arsed or don't care.
I hope you get some answers soon OP, you do sound worried.
Is it possible she is suffering from bulimia karenaanna.
My sister was anorexic and then became bulimic at about this age and it's ringing a lot of bells for me.
OP I'm glad you are going back to GP. If she is in more pain / unwell in the meantime I would consider a+e.
Just a thought, is she scratching because she's unhappy or because she is actually itchy? Is her abdomen swollen? Is there any yellow tinge to her skin? Unusual bruises? Yeses might signify a liver condition.
The significant weight gain in short period of time sounds most peculiar to me. (ps I am a doctor). Hope you get other sorted down x
OP, I hope you find the answers you seek tomorrow - I cannot and will not play armchair doctor, but cannot read this thread without offering you and your lovely DD .
I was hoping you would be able to see a doctor sooner than Thursday. OP, if you daughter won't eat, might it be a good idea to give her some Dioralyte to keep her electrolytes up? If she's got to wait till Thursday to see a GP you don't want her to get even worse in the meantime.
I feel very sorry for you and your DD, this is such a worry.
Hello OP, hope your daughter is feeling better. No medical advice I'm.afraid but thought it might be helpful to comment on the drama school/ uni thing. It's not at all standard to go for conservatoire training at 18. Going to uni first can be a good option, then following up with a post grad somewhere. It is spenny but you can get bursaries etc. Even working for a few years or travelling would be better than hitting drama school at 18. If you live in an area with a good scene, pt work combined with signing up for groups/ workshops and any and all related jobs (even the box office etc) for a year or so would be more attractive to admins at drama schools than a straight from school candidate.
Sorry, don't think I made it very clear before- I was worried about bringing up the weight part, yes, but everything was mentioned at the GP yesterday, as much as I want to protect DD I want to get to the bottom of whatever it is that's wrong with her.
She's definitely not pregnant. I've also ruled out ectopic pregnancy at this point- I know what teenagers can be like but I honestly think she's so desperate for this to be over I don't think she'd lie to me. She understands why I'm asking.
CathyandClaire this is what I've been trying to tell her. All of her universities she has offers from take productions to Edinburgh- she's been a couple of times now and refused to consider any that didn't! But her offer isn't for drama because a few months ago she wanted a completely different back up, now she's changed her mind [sigh] She's normally very rational and optimistic but I think everything is just a bit much for her at the moment.
The food issues have come to light in the last few hours, but I suppose bulimia is still possible. She's not in any pain at the moment, she says she's not, anyway.
Her abdomen is swollen but no yellow tinge- the GP put it down to her period starting, though still no other symptoms to suggest that. I honestly don't think she'd be so careful not to scratch in front of me if it was because it's itchy.
I've cut wheat out of her diet completely as of today, we'll see if that makes a difference. I've given her dioralyte, she seems tired but I'm putting that down to stress and eating very little last night/this morning.
could it be liver problems? swollen tummy and itching, unless the scratching is more self harm?
In terms of Bulimia, it's pretty much impossible for someone to tell you they have bulimia, or an eating disorder, as part of what it does is hide itself, and change the mindset of the person who has it, in a way that they wouldn't necessarily feel they were lying or deceiving you by saying they don't have a problem. (Sorry, that is far too long-winded.)
Cutting out gluten is a good idea at this stage, I know a few people who found this was the solution for similar weight gain (but not the periods stopping.)
Don't cut out wheat until you've seen a doctor again, if she does have coeliac disease it can only be properly diagnosed whilst on a gluten containing diet, if you're going to ask the doctor to do blood tests don't change her diet til these have been done.
Puberty and periods-wise, do you know what her breast development and pubic hair is like? If she is embarrassed about discussing that kind of thing, go on google images and get a diagram of tanner stages before you go back to the doctors, ask her if she can tell you or the doctor what stage she is closest to, you would expect a girl to be at tanner stage 3 when her periods start, so this helps give an idea of whether it is delayed puberty or just delayed periods.
As far as referrals are concerned, this is where adult medicine is so much more frustrating than paeds, if she was younger a gp could just refer to a paeds clinic and all the basic investigations could be done there. In adult medicine you often need a reasonably good idea of what's going on before referral so you can refer to the right person, there's no point referring to everyone as much more likely for things to be duplicated or missed as gastro think gynae have tested x and medicine think neurology haven't ordered y so they do it too! There are a lot of things that a gp can do or organise to work out what's going on before referring, for example blood tests, an ultrasound of the abdomen and so on. If it was me going to my gp I would definitely push for investigations but not necessarily for a referral (yet) unless it was very clear who I needed referring to, or the gp thought I was sick enough to warrant an acute admission and sent me straight to hospital.
I don't know about the physical/health side, but if you can make your daughter see that rising up from a setback like not getting into drama school will make her all the better and stronger. My own daughter is not good at that sort of thing, but my friend's daughter has always had to struggle to get into the school she wants and has "failed" lots of times. Now she has a honors master's degree and is applying her doctorate. I soo much admire that quality in her. I would guess that drama schools are in great demand and she is not just competing with people of her own age but also against more mature students.
It's such a tough time but you will get to the bottom of this. Good luck with your doc tomorrow
I keep quoting Uni facts at DD1
til I'm blue in the face but I think it helps to know that Drama school isn't always everything. A good friend of ours studied Law and was in many more productions during her three years than many we know at conservatoires, she now has a post grad acting place, with a huge amount of knowledge, maturity and experience. It Drama/MT socs they also get a chance to direct/choreograph and write and generally learn to be creative in a different way.
Check out this blog by a friend of DD's about the whole audition process.
A relative of mine got into a really good drama school (she went on an audition preparation course, which helped), but several years out of drama school now has not been able to get one single paid job. There's so much rejection in drama. I think you must have to be really tough to make a go of it (my relative eventually gave up on it and got an ordinary job).
When you were at the doctors did you leave her and the gp alone or were you there for the whole time? If so it might be worth leaving them alone next time in case there is something she doesn't want to bring up in front of you but would tell the doctor.
Some paediatricians see adolescents up to 18, so maybe you can be referred to one if you don't get any joy out of your GP? Either way, please do not get freaked out by armchair doctors, the range of illnesses suggested is just bonkers and it's not helpful to put ideas in your head. Just go in with a blank slate but be as open as you can. One positive I noticed was that your DD opened up to you, keep trying to get her to talk. You sound like a great mum.
She's been very teary today, slept a lot, didn't want to go out. Not convinced I'm doing the right thing really, I just hope I'm making it a bit better for her. She's missed her theatre group for the first time since she joined 4 years ago tonight which really says to me she's feeling very self conscious she's been eating much better this afternoon but then got all upset that she shouldn't have eaten because she's just going to put on more weight. Been keeping a close eye on her, I'm almost positive she hasn't been sick. Been cuddling her lots and noticed her belly feels much softer than yesterday, which perhaps rules out a fluid buildup and points more to hormonal? What it has confirmed to me is she's carrying masses of belly fat even in comparison to a couple of weeks ago, which is a bit scary. The scratching is self harming rather than anything medical I think
Looking at the tanner scale I'd say she was about a 3 right before Christmas, now more like a 4/5. No family history of delayed puberty.
I went out for part of the GP appointment, yes.
Okay fair point, some of us are medical but those that are would never ever suggest OP does anything other than go back to a doctor
Some people find it helpful to discuss around topics like this as it will help them present any relevant symptoms to the doctor and also it will avoid minimising something which may be quite serious
I do however see your point, and recognise that some people may find it more upsetting than 'googling' symptoms which is never a good idea. Generally though I am not sure they should put a thread in AIBU about it
so, I am sure a lot of people here were trying to be helpful and supportive giving OP some perhaps relevant, though more likely inapplicable and irrelevant, information to think about. It is of course not OP's job to differentially diagnose her DD that is for the medical team to do, but it can help to be informed and start ruling things out when symptoms so non specific, and it can help reassure that she is not in the wrong to refer back to medical professionals.
I think perhaps the food/self esteem/ harm/ ? bulimia ? purging anorexia is quite a significant possibility I wish you and your DD the very best, don't panic whoever's care you are under will get to the bottom of it pretty quickly, just encourage DD to be open and honest and reassure her
Bulimia. The whole thing sounds like bulimia, especially with the rapid weight gain and the self harm and the reticence about eating, especially with the reticence about eating.
It's not a bad thing, it's just another kind of illness.
Has she got any swelling on her face? Small cuts/marks/scars on her knuckles?
The dizziness and vision loss/fainting could be down to iron deficiency and/or anemia - I've had this in the past and it was very troubling for some time!
Scratching herself needs to be sorted out, it's often the starting point for "proper" self harm, and she really doesn't want to go down that route.
19lb in a short time would be upsetting for most people to be fair, but it certainly is not impossible at all. I wouldn't immediately go down the eating disorder route (I've had ED forever) - many, many teens will have this sort of reaction to such a big, quick weight gain. Especially when being a perfectionist person with high standards for herself, which sounds like your daughter!
Mefenamic acid works wonders btw!
Don't change her diet or anything else at this point, it could interfere with getting her diagnosed if it changes things. I get that it's tempting but I think it'd do more harm than good in terms of getting down to the real problem.
I wouldn't assume everything is down to 1 issue, it could be a couple of things coming up at once. However, I wouldn't go to the assumption that it's something very serious straight away, sometimes things have very simple explanations, and sometimes not.
Somethings not quite right here, so keep poking doctors until something happens. Don't think you need A/E or anything - just be persistent and swift rather than panic and make it all more stressful than needs be.
Good luck on thursday!
Ah OK, maybe taking gluten out of her diet wasn't the best idea then Although she has been visibly less swollen today which is making me think gluten is at least part of the problem? Not sure.
krindlekrax it's much harder to treat though isn't it? Her face is much fuller than a few weeks ago but it's difficult to tell whether it's swelling or part of the weight gain.
She's definitely finding it all very distressing, it's difficult to know how to help her On a brighter note, she's just checked her school email and she has an A* in her history coursework essay [insert proud mummy emotion]
It's lengthy to treat but, if you've got the right support, it can be really well treated and managed.
Here is some information about bulimia.
(And well done to her on the coursework essay )
FFS please stop diagnosing the OP's DD with complex and serious health conditions! Maybe you are completely right but it's never right to diagnose online.
Whatever it turns out to be all she needs right now is reassurance, love, a bit of normality if possible and maybe some distraction from focussing upon her body and her grades. She is struggling with a really hard time whatever the cause(s). Forget about diagnosis right now it is wholly futile until she is seen by a practitioner. Just think about emotional support.
Good luck OP.
It is very common indeed for someone to have anorexia for years, to finally get tired of restricting, and then to tip over into bulimia.
I agree that this is very likely for your daughter.
If she is perfectionistic then all the more likely that the restricting stage did not upset her too much, and would have been socially acceptable, but the binging stage is really distressing to the young person and their family as they are so used to looking at their elfin daughter.
If she has this ED then it is severe and WILL involve lying to you so you cannot know what she eating unless you are with her 24 hours a day.
I would ask your GP if this could be it, and then let the GP have a chance to see her alone. I would increase your supervision of her. And I would try to initiate a conversation around her diet.
If there is any chance at all that she is vomiting, and this is possible, then she should have her bloods checked, especially her potassium. Ask her GP.
It is not typical for stress to cause dizziness and loss of vision. But it is very common for severe eating disorders to cause serious problems with her heart, blood pressure, and electrolytes.
Be alert and speak to GP.
(Binges can reach >10,000 calories a day very easily. Weight gain is rapid. Parents are often convinced that they could not possibly eat so much in the short periods that they are not with them. But they can)
Hello I'm a drama lecturer at a university,pm me and I would be happy to help in terms of planned transitions into drama school after degree or what she might do in the meantime. This is a situation that happens an awful lot, she is by no means alone. Please do pm me, what a great mum she has
DD went to bed at just after 9 (normally she dances until 10 on Tuesdays) and came back down about half an hour ago in tears wanting to know if I still love her She's just gone back to bed. I feel awful. Clearly not getting the love and reassurance bit right.
Of course you are.
There is another piece to this puzzle you don't know about yet.
Personally, I would go up to her room and hold her, stroke her back and keep telling her that you love her and that she can talk to you about anything at all. I have done this on numerous occasions with my DSs, even quite recently and they are both in their 20s now.
Could you bring her into your bed and sleep with her tonight? That way, you can keep an eye on her and she might just open up to you if things are worrying her? I have often said to my lads that nothing would shock me (a slight lie that) and all kinds of stuff has spilled out!
Hope it is all sorted out soon.
Karenaanna, she is not well and this is not your fault. You are clearly a lovely Mum and you are getting the love and reasurance bit right. In fact, if she came downstairs to ask you that, she is trusting that you will provide her the reassurance she needs, which suggests you have good communication.
I'm still clinging to the hope that it's something hormonal and it's all connected but in all honesty I don't know. This is very, very unlike her. I haven't done enough, she wouldn't be feeling like this at all if I had. May try and see if I can get her an earlier GP appointment in a cancellation slot tomorrow morning.
Will go and suggest that if she's still awake gurlwiththecurl, good idea, thanks.
I haven't read all the thread (sorry) but I think you should take her to the GP and ask for a referral; I think she may have something Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome.
Sorry if this has already been said/ruled out. But there could well be something amiss. Best wishes.
We don't know what it is yet, but if it does turn out to be an eating disorder, you have done nothing to make it happen. Research has proved that parents do not cause it. Parents (and patients) are no more to blame than if someone had a congenital heart defect or a cyst or had a disability.
Whatever it is,your DD is clearly not suffering from the lack of a mother's love. It is not your fault. You need to believe this to be able to help your DD.
Good luck for Thursday OP. Sounds like anxiety.
I really feel for you and your DD. You will need to be pushy at the GP. My DD is a recently diagnosed coeliac and it took a year for diagnosis. I really liked PPs suggestion of saying would prod explain all else. Know you may be kicking yourself on removing gluten but it takes months for blood serology to return to normal so its no biggy (and gluten is everywhere so it may have sneaked in anyway).
I can't tell you what is wrong at the moment, it's all rather vague and we don't have any results etc but any physical illness in the teenage years which is serious in nature, will cause delayed puberty.
Such as inflammatory bowel disease like Crohn's disease.
Something like that is very hard for a teen to talk about and causes general illness .
She needs routine blood tests from the GP as an initial step to work out what is going on.
All you can do is ask her if she has any worrying symptoms... Any blood from anywhere, any pain.
OP I have nothing to add, but I hope it's okay to come on and just say how worrying this must be for you, and you're not doing anything wrong at all, you're doing a brilliant job.
Sorry, stupid phone. You are doing a great job, just reassure your DD that you will help her to sort everything out and it will be ok. I do think though that she should see a counsellor too. Hugs xx
Hop you are both getting some sleep. She cannot doubt that she is loved: your feeling jumps off the screen!
She has confessed overnight that she's been purging but is adamant this started after she started putting on weight because she was scared. I'm trying to get her an earlier appointment as she seems worse today, no luck so far.
Sorry to hear this
the scary symptoms like bloating and pins and needles are probably due to an electrolyte imbalance due to making herself sick/abuse of laxatives
it's ok, it can be sorted but she is goign to have to accept some help and start being honest about the extent of what she has been doing
don't hold out too much hope for that though (at least initially), people with eating disorders are notorious liars (meant kindly)
Your poor DD I hope she gets some answers from the GP You sound like a truly lovely Mum and you will be there for your DD whether this is nothing or something more. She is lucky to have you looking out for her.
Oh, bless you.
I can't recommend B-eat highly enough - they have a helpline (0845 634 1414) which I've found incredibly useful, and they're used to talking to parents. The B-eat website also has some fantastic resources.
Feast is also a good website. She may not be ready yet to accept professional help, but get her into the system and then if, in a few months, she is ready, she'll not have to wait as long.
She is probably trying not to shock or worry you.
Oh karenaanna so sorry to read this. Poor DD and poor you. The ballet world is tough sometimes.
Wishing you and your DD strength
You sound like a lovely, caring mother. DD is lucky to have you Hope you manage to get an earlier appointment, wishing you all the best x
The ballet world is tough yes, but don't jump to conclusions
If she's been making herself sick it'll explain why she asked if you still loved her as I expect she's feeling shame/guilt/anxiety, as opposed to you not doing enough.
I do hope you find out what's going on, and she starts to feel better.
Thanks so much everyone for the advice.
I know falulah, I'm kicking myself I didn't see it before I think she must have been trying to tell me last night and I missed it.
I didn't manage to get her an appointment today unfortunately, but she still has one for tomorrow morning. Trying to work out what to say.
Dd is adamant she only starting purging about a month ago after the weight gain started, which does fit, plus I wouldn't have thought she could put on that much weight that quickly through purging alone? I'm back to thinking she really needs them to check her hormones, that would account for her mood too. I honestly don't think the dancing a to blame, surely the purging would have started while she was still looking to dance professionally if it was?
She's been much worse today, I'm struggling to know what to do with her. I'm wondering if I should phone her dance teacher as she's now missed 3 days of her dance intensive and I wouldn't let her go tomorrow even if she wanted to, her teacher has known her since she was 7 and I don't want her to think she's making excuses over nothing.
In what way is she worse today? Physically, I mean?
I'm kicking myself I didn't see it before
No don't blame yourself at all - I was 'full time' (my docs words) bulimic for 6 years with no one noticing!
I have a feeling this is going to be a combination of physiological and emotional, if it IS her periods starting then it may be that she's having her first real hormonal low.
Now I'm off the pill etc. I feel so low, I actually cried at an advert and an episode of the simpsons last month :/
She's at that weird stage in her life when there's all this pressure (uni choices etc.) to 'decide who you want to be'. Just reassure her she doesn't have to stay on the path she chooses first forever more if it doesn't work out for her!
I'm sure you'll get to the bottom of it, keep pushing the for blood tests etc. In mine and other close friends/family's experience they always seem to tarry when it comes to hormone/reproductive problems that are a little unsual/can't be fixed with canesten cream.
I hope she feels a bit better soon.
Emotionally she's been a wreck today, especially since she confessed to the purging. Physically she's been very tired, apart from anything I think she's emotionally exhausted. She wasn't particularly bloated yesterday so I was hoping that was a one off thing but today she seems massively bloated, she's clearly uncomfortable. Doctors is tomorrow morning thank god.
That's what I'm hoping falulah, as horrendous a start to puberty this would be if that's what it is I think that's much better than it being something abnormal IYSWIM. There is definitely an emotional element, but I refuse to believe 19lbs in 6 weeks isn't at least partly physiological.
Make a list of things to ask for to be tested and if the gp is unwilling, get their reasoning. They will probably say that can't retest for another 3 months.
Off top of my head, likely standard tests would be:
Glucose (diabetes etc)
Full blood (liver etc)
Feratin (too little/too much iron)
Thyroid (TSH) - this on its own can be misleading.
Add to this the one I mentioned earlier, beginning with l.
Add whatever else you think, but might be as well to ask doctor what she thinks, and ask your daughter what she thinks. Hope it goes well.
Just ask for routine blood screen to be done , that includes( but your GP knows what it is)
Electrolytes and other biochemistry such as liver function and bone profile
CRP ( inflammatory marker)
Tiredness and feeling emotional are important but mp on specific
Try and ask her if she has a specific problem such as pain anywhere, blood loss from bowel, pregnancy( yes I know)
Is she on any meds?
What do you mean by purging , what has she been taking?
Is there any chance she is expecting?
Hi I don't post a lot but your situation has really hit a nerve with me. I also have a daughter who has been singing, dancing and acting since she could walk and talk. She is now at a specialist performance school for musical theatre and will be applying for all the further education drama schools next year. The pressure these kids put themselves under is immense. Your daughter just sounds like mine in so many ways a complete perfectionist and always trying to do her best in every area of her life. It can be difficult to raise kids like this. I too had a bit of a weight issue with mine a couple of years ago where by she lost a bit of weight naturally liked what she saw and decided to see now far she could take it. I managed to get her back on track fairly quickly and before any real damage was done. I don't really have any better advice to give you than you have already received from other posters but I just wanted to reach out to you and let you know I completely understand how you're feeling and where your coming from. I think you sound such a lovely mum and please stop beating yourself up. My only addition would be I would encourage you to speak to her dance teacher as if it is an eating disorder she will have seen it a lot of times before and may give you a bit of insight into how to best help. If she has known your daughter since she was seven she may even have picked up on something that may be helpful. I hope your appointment is more productive tomorrow.
There are lots of things that this could be, and there are lots of tests that could be done. However, none of us on here have actually seen or spoken to your DD, so it's impossible to get a proper idea of what the clinical priorities are or to work out a realistic differential. There have clearly been a lot of changes for her in the last few months, and I can see that you're really worried about her, but try to remember that tomorrow's appointment is really only to get the ball rolling. Unless she starts her period overnight, you're unlikely to have a complete answer or a perfect solution immediately.
I think it's probably a good idea to let your DD speak first. It's her body and her health, so the main description of her symptoms will be best coming from her. She is the one who is going to have to have any future tests, examinations, specialist appointments etc, so it's important that she builds up a rapport with her doctor. As a back-up, you might want to write down a list of the symptoms that have been particularly concerning you, in case she forgets anything. If there are any conditions that you are particularly worried that she might have, by all means mention them - the GP can either do tests to find out, or tell you why they don't think it fits.
As for her dance teacher, just give her a call and say your DD's not well, would that work? No need to give lots of details at this point. I hope it goes well for both of you tomorrow.
Just read through all of this, agree with all of the lovely supportive posts, and think that you are being a wonderful mother. Hopeful that your appointment will go well. She definitely cannot be fobbed off, if they take a dismissive attitude (which may happen) you must insist on further tests. I have a genetic disorder and can tell you that it takes a lot of of pressure to get extensive testing done, they won't just roll over and test for anything and everything. You may have to get googling and anything that you strongly suspect, tell the doc that a distant relative had it or something. They quite often don't test without some kind of lead. Sorry I can't be more helpful. Best of luck to you and your girl XXX
Agree with sock queen
She may wish to go in alone, if you go in with her remember the GP will address most things to her.
Don't go mad re asking about all the possible diagnoses, just stick to the main problem and ask to screen for what could be wrong ( in my opinion this would be done with bloods)
Thanks for the information, really helpful. She's been making herself sick, she hasn't taken anything she's mentioned. She wants me to go with her to the appointment, she's been very clingy this week. I will try and persuade he to let me go out at some point but don't want to push her. The list is a good idea, thanks.
I definitely think gluten could be at least part of the problem, yesterday when she avoided it she didn't have any bloating issues, today it looks painful could just be coincidence though, not sure if it would make a difference that quickly.
At the very least her primary amenorrhea needs to be addressed
karenaanna it sounds as though she is starting to tell you what's been going on in her head. FWIW I hope my DD trusts me as much as yours must trust you when she's 18.
As I've said before I am sorry you are both having a hard time. Writing everything down for your GP is good advice. I hope the appointment goes well.
You sound like a great mum; it is so worrying when things go wrong and I think it gets harder the older they get as they start to want to protect you from the upset, and because often there is so little you can do to help. Your daughter knows your love is unconditional; keep doing what you are doing and reassure her you are there for her whatever happens. Thinking of you today and hope apt goes well.
You are doing a good job, you are there for your DD and you will get through this. You've done so well for your DD to feel she could confide in you, and you held it together beautifully when your DD told you things that were hard to hear. That makes you a very special mummy!
My DDs dance. We have had some issues with food from DD2 and it is terrifying. If you want to talk, please do message me. We also found her dance teacher to be a great ally. If your DD has had the same teacher for years it is likely they have a good bond. My DD was restricting what she ate dangerously, her teacher was able to have a strong word about the need for vitamins, calcium etc as a dancer, and said if she was 'too weak' to dance because she hadn't eaten, she would be sitting on the side. It wasn't magic fix and DD2 can still be difficult with eating, but it made more difference than anything I or the GP said, and she always eats well on dance days (which is 3-4 x per week so helps).
We've also had late onset of puberty - DD1 started her periods at 17, 16 year old DD2 still hasn't started. Our GP has been fabulous in keeping 'an eye' from 16 which is reassuring, so do push for more help.
Good luck at the GP, I will be thinking of you and your lovely DD, you are both being so brave.
ive had both anorexia and bulimia - and the weight gain you see can actually be a result of swinging from one to the other. your dd has been restricting for a long time, her body NEEDS the food now to repair all the damage done by undereating so long. be prepared for it to take time for her body to adjust. (it is normal for her to feel like binging for a few months after years of restricting - her body needs the food! tell her this. it helped me immensly. these urges went away when i didn't purge or didn't fight them and let my body have the food it wanted, then my weight balanced out.) you would not have thought she was undereating because you saw her eat, but the fact was that she needed a lot more especially since she was doing all that dancing and its all catching up with her now - especially with puberty hitting.
another thing - my ed was triggered by hitting puberty late. i didn't get periods till i was 16, was skinny as a rake till then, then i couldn't deal with the weight gain afterwards. i know for a fact that if i had of got help then and there, and if someone had of told me it was normal to put on weight when you get your periods (sounds silly i know) i would not have went out of control with eds for years. it took me years to get help. you are doing amazing for her to have told you now, and for her to get help now will nip this in the bud. she has every chance of dealing with this and putting it behind her - you are working together and you are doing a great job.
i also recommend the feast website - a fantastic support forum for mothers
Please don't prejudge anything though. Before you go down the ED route, you need to rule out other medical issues.
OP I hope the appointment goes well, it sounds really tough for you and your dd. I agree with you that there could be a physiological cause for the weight gain and tiredness. I hope you get some answers and appropriate treatment soon.
Good luck with the appointment today. It does sound to me like she is underweight and pushing herself too hard.
As a veteran of Drama School applications, albeit 20 years ago, putting it off for a year could do her good. I went when I was 18 but I was applying for technical theatre rather than acting etc. It was a lot of travel, on my own. I still can't believe that I did it at 18, going to London and Manchester on my own and finding my own way about.
OP, it's fantastic that you're getting so much support and people are being so generous with their time to help you.
There are so many different theories, diagnoses-by-internet, projections etc being thrown around here that it can't possibly be helpful. It's completely understandable that you might start grasping onto theories that are more palatable or easier to solve and that might take you down a rabbit hole that isn't helpful in the long run.
Best thing you could do is log off, go and give your daughter a big hug, tell her you love her more than ever and you are here to help her cope with whatever she is going through. She doesn't have to deal with anything alone, she can tell you as much or as little as she feels comfortable with but the more she can tell you, the more you can help. Then get your Mama Tiger head on with the GP and any specialists that may end up being involved. Maybe NC again and come back for some more generic support when you've got more of a diagnosis or handle on what's going on.
Very best of luck to you and your DD.
GP appointment this morning was worse than useless, DD had another fainting episode right after so took her to A and E. Blood test has been done, also checked for coeliac disease, glucose levels, thyroid etc. Hospital thinks swelling is hormonal but need to wait for results. CAMHS referral has been suggested.
So sorry the GP was rubbish (many of them are!). Hopefully now that A and E are on the case you'll get somewhere. CAMHS can also be variable, particularly with young adults who can fall through the gap between teen and adult provision.
Continue what your doing and being pushy. Keep a note of every meeting and consultation so that you can keep track of everything as it can get overwhelming. Just be there for her. As someone who had a dreadful hormonal time as a teen, I'd just remind you that it's NOT your fault, she may say things she doesn't really mean (all teens do) but it doesn't mean you've let her down! You're doing really well for her at the moment and in years to come she'll be glad she had you fighting her corner! Hope you get some answers from the current lot of tests.
Grab the CAMHS referral with both hands.
fingers crossed you get some answers soon OP, sounds horrible and I think you did the right thing going to A&E!
I'm really sorry to hear that she's feeling worse, really hope the hospital get to the bottom of it quickly for you both. You're doing everything you can.
I had a weird un diagnosed thing at 17 that turned out to be glandular fever but I know how hard it was to get a diagnosis ( I lost weight and had fainting and dizziness etc). My mum had to fight tooth and nail to be taken seriously so make sure you badger the docs OP.
We will definitely be taking up the Camhs referral, the starching has gotten worse in all fairness the gp did suggest Camhs and a blood test to investigate the lack of periods, but she also told DD while her BMI was in the healthy range for her height she had a lot of abdominal fat and it was important to lose this as it's linked to health problems such as diabetes . Dd had mentioned at the start of the appointment how sudden the weight gain had been, how much dance she does etc. I would complain but luckily for the gp it's not my main priority at the moment.
Your poor Dd, I think 19lbs in 6 weeks is lot just for the start of puberty. I would make a list of all the possibilities and rule them out as they are being tested, there are so many things it could be, but I hope it gets sorted for her soon poor thing
Really cross that your GP was so shit but glad that you went to A&E. Hopefully you will start getting some answers.
The GP told your daughter it's important to lose the weight. Good grief.
I'm so sorry your GP was so hopeless - at least you have for somewhere today which will put you on the right path to a diagnosis.
DoctorDonna - sweeping generalisations about GPs aren't all that useful. What do you base your evidence on?
Make a note of it, and complain when things have stabilised a bit. That's shitty from the GP.
That they're generalists - and so often something a little different will be missed. Also, they're pushed for time and so don't always have the time to listen. This creates problems.
The doesn't explain where your evidence that many of them are rubbish comes from DoctorDonna. What is your speciality? I wonder what your GP colleagues would think of your opinion?
Other things to consider...Does your dd have other indications that puberty is underway - change of body shape, body hair, etc? Or is it just the periods that haven't started yet?
Go back when I he blood tests come back, I would, and ask the doc what else it could be.
Another thing to tell the doctor is if your own periods started before the age of 15/16. These things can run in families. If yours started when you were 12, you could use that as a little leverage. Not that you should have to!
the doctor is wrong when she says your dd needs to lose the weight, as she is not taking into account your dds history. please do some research on recovery from restriction... your body puts the weight on your stomach first....this happens after restriction and its NORMAL your dds weight will balance out. the worst thing she could do now is try to lose weight when her eating is already up and down. sorry i know you are being given loads of conflicting advice, but think carefully before you take this doctors advice.
I'm not a Doctor - it's a character from Doctor Who. Sorry if I've caused offence but don't want to derail the discussion.
It's based on experience. And the knowledge that both general practice and Mental Health services are underfunded and overstretched.
I think the OP is doing a marvellous job and is going about everything in exactly the right way. I hope she gets answers soon.
Hope you get answers for your dd soon.
Up to 22lbs gained in 6 weeks as of her being weighed at the gp- and this is with hardly eating this week. it's scary. The only thing I can come up with in the GPs defence is when I took DD on Monday (different gp) her belly was massively bloated, so obviously something not right, no bloating at all so far today so it does look like "fat". Which it is, I'm not disputing that she's carrying a disproportionate amount of fat on her belly, my concern is that she's put on 22lbs in 6 weeks despite no changes to her diet/exercise levels. There's got to be something more going on.
No real change to her body shape until she started putting on weight, which is making me think it could be connected to puberty. My periods started at 13, no family history of delayed puberty. We mentioned at a and e, possibly why we finally got somewhere!
muser I really don't think she's recovering from long term restriction, she says the purging started a couple of weeks ago after the drama rejections and when she'd put on a noticeable amount of weight already, which fits with when I first started worrying about her- her dance teacher has said she started worrying something was wrong around that time too. I honestly don't think she's been anorexic in the past. The weight gain is all over but has always been disproportionately on her belly, I really don't think it's down to restriction. That said, as she's barely eating at the moment I'm certainly not going to encourage her to diet.
hi karen you are sounding so tuned in to your dd.
i do apologise if she hasn't been long term restricting and what i was saying doesn't apply....just trying to throw suggestions in.
i really hope you get this all sorted soon and the right people get involved to help. it all sounds very distressing for her.
I'm so sorry for you and your dd. What an awful time she is having.
Trust your instincts and keep pushing for referrals if you are not happy enough is being done. Having two dc with health issues it has been the only way to get the care they need. Its frustrating and hard but long term it has been worth it.
Hang in there, the pieces will come together and you can help her get better.
Off topic but that's a terrible sweeping generalisation many GPs are fantastic, under extraordinary pressures, having to make very hard diagnoses and decisions with limited time and information from a frankly endless array of possibilities. GPs do a very good worthwhile and stressful job and are often highly skilled in specialist areas alongside being generalists.
Sorry the GP said that though in these circs it was inappropriate and potentially a very damaging comment.
I am not too surprised by the weight gain with the background of ED/purging behaviour
I hope she has immediately done FBCs to check electrolyte levels
I think it's a really positive thing that your DD has been so open and honest with you. It is important to encourage that and not ever make her feel ashamed - seek help now for the ED - often anorexia can be chronic and unnoticed, purging can go with anorexia not just with bulimia, there is a lot of overlap, and one may morph into another. I think you're off to a positive start - ignore the weight, it's really not an issue and is completely normal in recovery from anorexia for example to gain weight very rapidly sometimes, it's all under complex hormonal drives. Encourage normal eating and normal not excessive exercise levels. Make sure electrolytes normal, then investigate amenorrhea but this comes from being a low weight so may resolve itself naturally, all needs investigating, but lots of support out there - well done on having such a good relationship with your DD that she feels she can tell you the truth about this, that speaks volumes about how reassuring you are to her.
OP fat often goes to the central abdominal area first before being redistributed which can take a year or 18 months in some cases. In ED treatment it can be hard because it sometimes takes a while to look normal and right for it all to distribute properly around the body
22lb in six weeks is a huge amount.
I've had a dreadful few months and have been eating rubbish and doing much less exercise since Xmas. I've put on 8lb in two months.
As others have said, are there other signs of puberty? Body shape change might not be so noticeable, but what about body hair.
I think you should ask to be referred for a scan. Don't want to scare you at all, because I know you're already freaked out but the rapid weight gain and bloating/swelling can be a sign as you may already know, of ovarian malignancy.
It could also be a benign cyst...and many, many other things.
I just wanted to mention that so you can add it to your reasons if you do request a more urgent referral x
but she also told DD while her BMI was in the healthy range for her height she had a lot of abdominal fat and it was important to lose this as it's linked to health problems such as diabetes
Sounds like they were just trying to say something because they didn't want to look like they didn't know anything at all because they couldn't diagnose.
What a ridiculous thing to say. :/
I don't think she's been long term restricting, but then I didn't think she'd been purging either, so who knows. She's scratched herself raw down her sides. Bloodwork has been done, yes. She says she has body hair but only recently.
pooroldcat the gp who examined her this morning said as her belly isn't constantly bloated it would be weight gain "making her fat" and hormonal causes bloating wise. Whether I trust her or not I'm not sure.
Hmm. I know there have been a lot of things bandied about here, but have they tested her cortisol levels? All the itching makes my Cushings alarm ring, or possibly pituitary related, as this can include growth hormone deficiency with resulting big tummy and thin limbs. It can be a pig to diagnose as the thyroid TSH test won't bring much up. I put on 1.5 stone in 6 months and added 5 inches to my waist in the same time period when my pit failed. But make sure you are firm as it does sound mighty odd.
I hope everything went as well as it could do today OP, and that you get some answers soon.
H sorry, must have missed a page!
Not sure I would trust much that that GP said after those comments!
I personally would ask to see a different GP, they sound like very unhelpful comments.
I honesty think the scratching is self harm, she never does it around me. Dh has been working away for the past two weeks and is due back tomorrow, she's worried he's going to think she's fat
Is she still at school? Can you talk to her head of year and ask for help through the school?
Oh ffs the comments from the GP sadden but don't shock me. I have an ED and have had some corkers in the past.
Good luck withe results, you're doing a great job and your daughter is lucky to have you.
My jaw hit the floor when I read what the GP had said. As above, I'd
insist ask for another GP - it might also help prove to your DD what codswallop they were talking, otherwise she might take it to heart
All the best to you both x
She NEEDS a good GP who you both can get on with. A few blood tests in A&E may not give you all the answers and they cannot provide you or her with the continuity of care that she needs for something puzzling/complex like this. I hope you find one and get some answers soon.
An ED would explain lack of periods, weight changes, bloating and rest of symptoms.
The fact that this is stressful academic time makes ED worse.
Self harming would also fit in the above presentation.
She may not even be fully aware of how she has been controlling food if it is a behaviour that has developed over time, she may not be aware she has had a problem for a long time.
Hopefully camhs can offer an appointment soon.
Oh, how frustrating that GP visit sounds! I hope the next investigations get you somewhere.
So glad the hospital have done some tests and well done for your perseverance and support. She's lucky to have you as a Mum, on her side
Is there anyway those scratch marks could be stretch marks? When my boobs first grew people kept asking if I'd scratched my chest! They appear at times of hormonal change combined with shape change and can be itchy too.
I wondered about stretch marks. Also, sheay well be itchy due to her belly swelling. Much like pregnant ladies having dry itchy bumps.
hope you find answers soon op
She's still at school- and already saying she doesn't want to go on Monday. I tried phoning up to see if I could talk to someone this morning but no answer, going to send her year of year an email I think. DH has been away for two weeks and she's absolutely terrified he's going to think she's fat when he gets home, I wonder if she's going to be less dead against going to school come the weekend. It's a bit of a dilemma really, I sort of feel don't make her go but then this could go on for months, she's going to have to go in eventually.
puffin I think she already has taken it to heart She will NOT be seeing that GP again and I will be making a complaint.
Re stretch marks she's confessed to me she's been scratching because she's so disgusted with herself, it could well be a combination of both though. I've only seen from a distance, VERY unlikely she'd let me look the way she's been today but will ask her. Although not sure letting on to her it might be stretch marks is the best idea at the moment.
I am so sorry you are going through so much. I would be careful about assuming there is just one thing wrong. You have ruled out pregnancy and think it may be linked to diet or her periods starting but there are also other options causing weight gain and all her other symptoms.
I would be making daily appointments until something is done unless you are 100% happy with what the hospital is doing.
Maybe pre-warn your DH that your DD is worried he will think she is fat. She shouldn't have to worry about that and he should have enough compassion to not mention it to her but just in case.
Good luck. Keep fighting for your DD to be helped.
This may not be what you want to hear but it sounds like she has clearly been self harming, she is at a bad place with her body image and she has problems with food.
Sit down with her, tell her you think there is s problem but you can only help her if she explains to you what's going on. She has already disclosed some info, sounds like she is ready to have that conversation.
It sounds like you are a caring and loving mum and I am sure she is aware of that.
Op, I have no medical input, but does your dd have access to social media, such as Instagram, or Facebook? If so, have you checked her accounts recently?
I was shocked to find my son following a lot of self harm and suicide profiles on instagram. Story after story of self harm, eating and being sick, stories of bullying, etc. Basically, users can message the profile owners their experiences, and it will be spewed out to all the followers. They tend to wallow a bit, and my son was so caught up in this that he started sh-ing too, just for the "community" of it all. It took a while to get him out of the mindset. He did not have so much else going on like your dd has, but it could be worth checking the social media site for any inspiration of "community" of kindred souls egging each other on...
Can I just say too though, that the community of those recovering from sh and EDs can be invaluable. The support netwok is great for gettimg the right kind of information and help. Avoid 'pro ana' or any orher pro-sh sites or blogs certainly, but don't write them all off. Also consider carefully before banning that kind of thing outright for a teenager who is nearly 18 and sounds very sensible. She sounds like she might like some help and support from others who have been through something similar. Maybe you could set up a blog together where you can help her through it (or she could do this herself, as a way to express how she is feeling, without having to go into details or ansewr questions. Blogs have options to not allow comment or PMs.)
Well she's visibly more relaxed now DH is back and nothing has been said but she's still insisting she's not going to school on Monday- we'll see.
Quinteszilla I've checked her accounts, I can't see anything but I'll keep an eye on it, that sounds scary. Sorry to hear about your son, hope he's doing OK now.
yegodsandlittlefishes I'll have a look, thanks
Have you thought about some sort of counselling or similar for your dd. It sounds as though she needs somewhere to express herself.
I had an ED (not saying this is necessarily her issue) and I wish this had been suggested to me. Someone gentle and non-judgemental to talk to. just to empty my head. EDs can be a form of self-harm.
This might have already been said, but has she made any changes to diet (before the recent restricting)? I was a vegetarian for years and recently started eating meat. I have put on loads of weight and it has all gone to my tummy. People were thinking I was pregnant way before i was actually pregnant!
Does she say why she doesn't want to go to school? Is it feeling bad this week or is there something going on at school she hasn't told you about?
No changes to her diet, no- apart from she's barely eaten this week. She doesn't want to go into school because she's scared people will make fun of her
It sounds to me as if this is too do with confidence, depression and anxiety.
It's possible with reassurance and talking it out she may improve .... What do you think about the dance/ ballet issue, is there much pressure on her from that POV both performance wise and thin ness wise?
Hmm...When is your next appointment with the GP?
I know that you've taken up the CAMHS referral, but waiting times can be ridiculously long, in which time problems can worsen.
Personally, from the point of view of someone who's experienced similar things, I would be tempted to go back to the GP on Monday and demand that something is done, and agree that you won't send her back to school until there's a plan in place. I'd ring the school on Monday and discuss how you can make going back to school easier for her - it's better that they know earlier on than when (if) things reach crisis point.
i agree with getting her a counsellor. the sooner she is able to talk about everything and deal with it all the better.... the GP surgeries often offer counselling but again you can be waiting awhile.... there could be some charities that offer free counselling in your area, or counselling with a reduced fee since she is a student maybe you could check on online, counselling can be so helpful
I would try and access counselling or therapy asap, if you've got private healthcare, it could be really quick. If not, try everything so she's getting help in the very near future. Camhs referals tend to take a while.
The other aspect is the physical one, getting her checked properly is absolutely necessary.
Don't let them tell you it's all ed related when it may not be.
All the best for you and your daughter.
How is she today, karenaanna?
Hope you're both ok, have been thinking of you.
Any progress/improvement with your daughter, OP?
How is your daughter op? I hope she's getting some answers/treatment now.
Me too, thinking of you op, how is your daughter feeling?
Must admit to wondering what the outcome has been though probably OP doesnt want to post too much detail.
Sorry I don't have time to read all the recent posts OP. I've read through yours though.
I'm sure someone's already suggest PCOS. Just reading through the physical symptoms it is making me think of this. Can cause lack of periods, weight gain (esp around abdomen), pain. I know my sister experienced some crazy weight gain with it despite dieting.
It affects the blood sugar so weight gain isn't always sorted by restricting (could make it worse if blood sugar thrown even more out of whack). I have PCO too and am prone to weight gain in tummy. Only way I can lose it is low carb. Calorie restriction alone doesn't help and you don't really want to restrict the calories of a teen anyway. A healthy version of Atkins ie lots of natural fats and whole foods might help. Could add brown rice and some other gluten free grains like oats.
Obv this is just a suggestion for one aspect of her issues as from what I have read there is a lot going on.
I hope that you get speedy help from the medical profession to resolve this as soon as possible.
She's lucky to have a mum like you.
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