AnonymousOctober 25, 1998 at 12:37 amPost count: 93172
Did anyone have any thoughts about my RAI hugs message?AnonymousOctober 25, 1998 at 10:30 amPost count: 93172
Well, my own thoughts were that you should probably ask a nuclear med doctor, or your endo, to be absolutely sure. The guy who gave me MY instructions before RAI seemed to think that there really wasn’t a whole lot of risk to my friends and family, and suggested minimal precautions. Being in the same room, giving a casual hug and lots of moral support, did not concern him, based on what he told me. I don’t, however, know that he is the “last word” in the issue. Some docs may be more cautious. You would not want to jeapardize your own recovery, though, so I would recommend you check things out with a pro, first.
BobbiAnonymousOctober 25, 1998 at 11:14 amPost count: 93172
If in doubt, don’t do it! By all means, call the Department of Nuclear Medicine in a hospital who, I am sure, the staff will be happy to give you an idea. My thyroid has already been nuked and I would rather not hug any ‘radioactive’ person until it is safe to do so.AnonymousOctober 26, 1998 at 12:43 pmPost count: 93172
I think you should stay away, even if you’ve had RAI. When you had RAI, all the radiation went to your thyroid because the radiation was linked to the iodine, which your thyroid sucked up. But if you go near someone who has had RAI, her radiation won’t target other peoples’ thyroids — she’ll just be emitting it to anything within a certain distance of her thyroid. It doesn’t matter that your thyroid is gone — all your other body parts will be exposed to her radiation. Call your doctor to be sure, though.AnonymousOctober 26, 1998 at 5:11 pmPost count: 93172
I was completely alone when I had to have my RAI. Even though
I would have loved a hug from someone my gut tells me that it is
not safe, even if you’ve already had RAI. We will never really
know how much of the thyroid “dies” when we decide to take the
atomic cocktail, so in my opinion, don’t chance messing up that
“delicate balance.” There is nothing scientific about my opinion,
just a gut reaction.
You don’t have to be physical to show love. I would have loved it
if someone had just been there for me. It would have been wonderful
to wake up and know that someone was in the apartment to help me
if I needed it. If you are there for your friend for that time,
then the love and support will be felt. Of course, later, just
hug her twice as much, you can make up for lost time.
I hope this helps….regards….CarolynAnonymousOctober 26, 1998 at 6:51 pmPost count: 93172
Here are some examples of what my friends/family did for me (I’m very blessed)
1. Bring fresh flowers and set them by the door.
2. Bring a basket of home made goodies.
3. Bring a few rented movies over.
4. Bring a cheeseburger from favorite fast food place.
5. Call-call-call on the phone and have long visits over the phone.
6. Bring bubble bath and good book over beforehand or set by door.
My time went so fast. I stayed home and cleaned my house and all my closets and drawers. I talked a lot on the phone. I wasn’t bored or too lonely because I knew everyone was thinking of me.
Hope this helps.AnonymousOctober 27, 1998 at 12:04 amPost count: 93172
Thank you all for the good advice. I haven’t had a chance
to call the doctor’s office yet to hear what they think.
But, you’ve given me a lot of good ideas for ways to support
my friend without jeopardizing my own delicately balanced
health. I appreciate your candor.
Thanks!AnonymousOctober 27, 1998 at 9:36 amPost count: 93172
I posted this before but for anyone new here it is again:)
Having Graves’ disease, we all go through a roller coaster of
emotional reactions and feelings. I think it is very important
to share with you some of the ways YOU, family members, and friends
can help. You may feel helpless, but there are a few things YOU can do:
BE THERE FOR THEM
You do not have to have all the medical or theological answers
about their situation. A simple hug, a reassuring touch and a listening
ear can be a most efficient therapy.
Remember, you are there for them. They may be looking for you
to be a source of strength and emotional security. Try to have
a soothing and calming effect on them.
BE PRESENT AT CRISIS TIMES
Be there for them at the beginning of major treatment processes (RAI or
surgery) or after devastating test results. Just your presence can be
a welcome source of encouragement.
OFFER A SENSE OF HUMOR AND CONTACT WITH THE OUTSIDE WORLD
Laughter can be among the best medicines when used appropriately.
Graves’ patients need a good joke or funny story once in a while!
HELP THEM EVALUATE AND TAKE ADVANTAGE OF AVAILABLE RESOURCES
There are many support groups and agencies that provide beneficial
services to Graves’ patients. Organizations such as the National
Graves’ Disease Foundation and Thyroid Foundation of America offer
excellent resources for the patient, family, and friends.
ALLOW THEM TO EXPRESS THEIR EMOTIONS
Let them cry when they need to. Try not to be judgmental when
they express anger or are depressed. Again, learn to listen!
DON’T FORGET THE SIMPLE THINGS
Simply asking, “What can I do for you to help you out?” may inspire
It’s has been said that “A friend in need is a friend indeed!”
(Show this handout and advice to family, friends and significant
others!)AnonymousOctober 27, 1998 at 10:29 amPost count: 93172
Lauren, what a great post. I have printed it for reference on how to help friends in bad situations, not only illness but riding out some of the bumps life puts in our way. Thanks for some good ideas. After my RAI the hardest thing for me was to banish the cats from my lap and bed. I spent literally hours on the phone but didn’t have face to face contact with people per doctors instructions. But boy if someone had delivered flowers or better yet a Big Mac it would have made my day.
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