This is part of a brand-new Thread, kicked off for this reason:
As I mentioned in yesterday’s Note, I’m not in a position to do follow-up reporting on a topic I mentioned after Garry Shandling’s death. That topic was the disease Shandling suffered from, hyperparathyroidism, and why it deserves more attention than it gets. Those posts also explained how my own experience with this disease had taught me that it was an exception to the “when in doubt, wait” strategy I generally apply before taking dramatic steps. The longer you wait before getting the operation that is the only known cure for this disease, the more damage it will do.
A lot of people have sent in their positive and negative reports. Notes maestro Chris Bodenner and I will host selections in this thread. You can reach him via email@example.com.
“Don’t be bullied into waiting.” A reader in Los Angeles writes:
My sister and I have both had surgery (she twice) to remove a total of five tumors between us … thereby revealing the inaccuracy of the endocrinology community’s assertion that there is no genetic predisposition to the condition. (Our brother is currently suspect and being tested.)
I lost productive years of my life arguing with my [one major LA-area medical center] endocrinologist about whether my calcium levels were “high enough” to warrant action. Finally found a guy at [another center in the area] who believed me when I said I was suicidal from the symptoms. I absolutely would be dead if he hadn't listened to me, and will be forever grateful even though —
— one of my vocal cords was paralyzed while “spelunking” for the second tumor. Sounds much like your experience with your wandering para; you were just a little luckier. I lost my career because my speaking voice is now raspy and annoying, usually failing entirely by mid-day— but I would do it again.