Friday, May 30, 2008

Cushing's featured on National Geographic Science of Obesity

“Genetics and runaway appetite are not the only causes of obesity. Sometimes, your own body can turn against you in ways you never imagined.”

National Geographic put together a show called The Science of Obesity. It aired in September 2007. It mainly followed a man getting gastric bypass surgery. Luckily, they did include one six-minute segment on Cushing's at the end. It features Kate, a Cushing's patient on the message boards with me, and her doctor, Dr. Thomas Friedman ( Kate was brave to share her story with all of America. We thank her for her efforts. Over 20,000 people have viewed this segment on youtube. We hope others will see this video and get the help they need and deserve.

This is a very good segment, including detailed diagrams showing the pituitary, the production of cortisol and ACTH, and effects of too much cortisol on the body.

Sharmyn McGraw, the face of Cushing’s

Sharmyn McGraw is by far the most public face of Cushing’s. As a survivor of Cushing’s, she has made it her crusade to bring awareness to this disease. After spending seven years searching for a diagnosis, Sharmyn now spends her time educating both patients and the medical community. So many people have seen Sharmyn's story and have started testing for Cushing's as a result. We all thank her for stepping out and sharing her story. We are all very proud of her.


Sharmyn was also featured on a segment of the show Mystery Diagnosis on the Discovery Health channel. Isn't it a pretty bad sign when the disease you have is featured on a show called Mystery Diagnosis?!

Program description: "Lethal Diet. Parents deal with a son with sinus infections and unsteady feet. A woman gains weight, has oily skin, hair loss, body cramps, and irritable bowel syndrome."

The Cushing's segment airs every few weeks or so. Sharmyn's story airs about 20 minutes into the hour long show. You can set your Tivo or DVR to pick up this show. I just set mine to save 3-4 episodes, and then routinely delete the shows that do not have it listed in the program description.

Here are some YouTube videos of some of the segments that aired about Cushing’s. You can visit her website at to view all of them.

Sharmyn McGraw on the Montel Williams show

Sharmyn McGraw on NBC News in Los Angeles

Sharmyn on news: surgery and recovery in 18 months

Resources for Cushing's and Pituitary Tumors

I wanted to share some resources that proved invaluable to me in researching Cushing’s disease. My self-diagnosis would have never come without these websites.

Pituitary Network Association

Cushing’s Support & Research Foundation

Cushing’s Help and Support

Hormones 411 by Sharmyn McGraw, Cushing’s survivor/advocate

Hormone Foundation

Friday, May 23, 2008

I've always like the word MOXIE

First of all, it rhymes with FOXY. And we all know that is cool. :)

Secondly, I love its definitions, and if I may so so myself, feel like it accurately represents the way I am trying to face this disease.

American Heritage Dictionary
mox·ie (mŏk'sē) n. Slang
1. The ability to face difficulty with spirit and courage.
2. Aggressive energy; initiative:
3. Skill; know-how. Unabridged (v 1.1)
mox·ie /ˈmɒksi/ –noun Slang.
1. vigor; verve; pep.
2. courage and aggressiveness; nerve.
3. skill; know-how.

Just getting started

Hi everyone! I decided to help Cushing's Disease gain awareness by telling my personal story and experiences with this disease. I hope you will come by and check this out frequently!