My Encounter with Lupus
Like some of you who will be reading this blog, the doctor's have diagnosed me with having an incurable disease. I've decided to chronicle my journey so that it may give you support or a new way to look at what you encounter in your life.
This is all new to me! Sixteen weeks ago I was a regular hard working single mom, attending my sons' football games and having fun with my gal pals.
It all started approximately seven months ago when I started to have odd little annoyances in my life. One day it would be a sore swollen knee, then swollen ankles, aches in my forearm, a sore shoulder, aches in my quadriceps or headaches that wouldn't go away. These would come and go and I would wonder "What did I do yesterday that caused these aches and pains? Is it old age? Is this AR (runs in my family)?". However, none of these symptoms stayed for more than a day or two, so I never really put much stock into them.
Two months later these symptoms continued but were accompanied by fatigue as well as swelling/numbness of my right hand and arm as well as having my eyes swelling shut (not pretty - I looked like someone had punched me in the eyes!). All of this culminated on Easter weekend 2014 when I woke up to have almost all of these symptoms together. I couldn't stand, sit, open doors or cut my own food without assistance. That's when my mother ordered me to see the doctor!
I was immediately referred to a rheumatologist who ordered numerous tests and X-rays. As the test results came in she ordered even more tests and put in an urgent referral to a nephrologist. I was in a nephrologist's office within 48 hrs, and once seeing me, he admitted me to the hospital. At this point my BP was 220/110. They kept me in the hospital for several days which were filled with more tests, X-rays, CT scans, ultra sounds and a kidney biopsy.
That was sixteen weeks ago. The doctors' have since diagnosed me with Lupus and as if that wasn't bad enough, the kidney biopsy revealed Stage IV Lupus Nephritis.
This is where my 'encounter' with lupus and stage IV lupus nephritis began. I say 'encounter' as I refuse to own this diagnosis!
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The doctor's say I have lupus & stage IV lupus nephritis - I beg to differ!