What if we could sing this to our doctors:
"Why can't you see
What you're doing to me
When you don't believe a word I say."
~ Elvis' Suspicious Minds
In an article release today, Elvis Presley's personal physician details the medical health of the legendary rock star. Up to this point, Dr. Nick was held accountable for the King's death, even losing his medical license in Tennessee for the over-prescription of drugs that led to Elvis' death.
I read the article with a fan's fascination. I was struck by the simple word included in the article: Cushing's.
Perhaps Elvis had what I have: Cushing's disease.
The article mentions Cushing's syndrome from excess steroid usage. However, in general, the symptoms Elvis sought to medicate heavily are things I have wished someone could help me with. Perhaps Elvis had Cushing's disease as an underlying cause to all of his symptoms? The article says Elvis' hospital test results showed Cushing's syndrome. What if it was the other way around? Perhaps Elvis had severe pain from Cushing's disease (pituitary tumor could be the cause of the eye pain), and the docs gave him additional steroids to help the symptom of pain. It is possible!
He couldn't fall asleep at night.
He gained weight and lose weight.
He was irritable and impatient and volatile (at times).
He had headaches and eye pain.
He had to stop what he was doing and sit down to take a break.
He had diarrhea and colon problems.
And the list goes on and on.
Elvis was found dead at the toilet after vomiting. Perhaps he vomited from low blood pressure caused by low cortisol. Perhaps adrenal insufficiency.
What does it do to our reality if Elvis was not just an eccentric celebrity with money? What if he was a sick man, miserable and in pain, trying to keep up with a daily schedule that is maxxed out beyond what any of us with Cushing's (or without Cushing's) could imagine??
If you are a Cushing's patient, did you find yourself nodding in understanding when reading this story??
Elvis had the money and the means. He got the prescriptions that he felt he needed. He was treating the symptoms, not the disease. Most physicians didn't know any better. Most physicians don't know any better now.
The photos include in the article show an Elvis whose weight came on fast and suddently. I remember the Elvis of the 70s, and I remember being among the millions that wondered how that handsome legend's appearance could change so drastically.
Stars-doctor-finally-reveals-true-madness of final days.
This makes me so sad. I hope the medical community wakes up and figures out how to treat this disease. What other promising lives are lost too early to this RARE disease called Cushing's??
P.S. Remember, celebrities do not always disclose their medical struggles to the public. This is a relatively new phenom. Remember my post about JFK having Addison's?