On Friday, I published and then withdrew a blog post in which I worried myself into a knot about the "What if" scenarios around my recent blood tests. After a brisk walk and a fruit salad, I took the post down because I know that some of my readers have genuine, diagnosed, proper full-on life-threatening conditions, and may not wish to hear about my pointless fear-of-the-unknown attention-seeking nonsense.
OK - so here we go - I am NOT ILL. The GP found nothing of concern in the 6 tests he requested, other than that I have low iron stores. Which is only to be expected since my "monthly" cycle has gone into overdrive.
No thyroid trouble.
Which leaves me with my rash and my Raynaud's, my disappearing eyebrows and my super-skinny waistline.
I was honest with the Doctor about my Googling efforts. And he admitted that he had written the same thing in my notes... but didn't mention it at my last appointment.
So... not wishing to cry wolf*, I have been scouring the web with my symptoms and keep coming up with the same possibility: what if I have lupus*?
Malar rash TICK
Carpal tunnel TICK
Joint pain TICK
Weight loss TICK
Hair loss TICK
Recurrent miscarriage (not recently, obviously, but last few times we tried) TICK
Migraines / headaches TICK
Dry eyes TICK
Depression... um, not sure, maybe, but don't want to admit it.
But none of this is making me feel unwell. And the Doctor concurred with my view that if I DID have lupus I would surely be feeling rough, having to take time off work, suffering. We looked at my blood tests again, and there is no evidence of rheumatic trouble, or inflammation, and my "sediment rate" is in the normal range at 2. So it is unlikely... but can't be ruled out.
He did not order any further tests. I would need an Anti Nuclear Antibodies blood test to check for lupus, and it has not been done yet. We are going to wait and see what happens with my rash. If the topical antibiotics do not clear it up within a couple of months, he will have another think... because an ordinary rosacea rash will respond to this treatment, but a lupus rash will not.
Maybe I just have delusions that I am Lady Gaga. Not my scene at all.
Instead I will listen to a more age-appropriate CD. It makes me cry every time, and sometimes you just need a good cry, don't you think? To let out all the toxins and feel much much better.
*Latin for wolf is "lupus"