Real Men Wear Gowns: Freddie’s Story

Mark Twain used to say that a real man was one who could sit at a dinner table across from a mirror and never look at himself. Well Mark Twain never met Freddie Hokams.

This is not how Freddie Hokams saw himself. He was not that guy in the doctor’s office. But reality vanquished his self-image.

“I came to the doctor because I had started feeling fatigue. I couldn’t get no rest at night. I was always tired,” said Hokams.

But that’s still not what brought him to this place, to this examination room, to this doctor, Mark Viegas. Something else did.

“It was hard to just keep going every day, to work a regular schedule to go home and do things around the house because I was exhausted all the time.”

Fortunately for Freddie, Dr. Viegas always checks Vitamin D levels on routine checkups. Yep, that was it.

“As you get older, you don’t think about needing vitamins but your body slows down in producing them and I found out that my Vitamin D level was real low which was causing my fatigue and muscle aches.”

“Over time Vitamin D deficiency can lead to low bone mass, osteoporosis, increased risk of falling or even fractures,” said Dr. Viegas.

Dr. Viegas has prescribed a Vitamin D pill for Freddie, to be taken over the next three months. Then there’ll be another checkup. In the old days, Freddie would’ve shrugged all that off, but not now.

“Don’t wait. See your doctor. Get your annual checkups and you can prevent this from ever happening before it ever does happen to you.”

About 40 percent of adults are Vitamin D deficient. A diet of foods rich in Vitamin D, like fish and eggs, can help. Careful exposure to sunlight can also help.