Friday, January 29, 2010

Final Verdict from Infectious Disease

Now that it has been two weeks since my last post and many many blood donations to the laboratory, I have some news. I had my final appointment with my Infectious Disease doctor this afternoon. Today we went over the last round of blood tests that I had taken at the last visit. These tests were for the obvious infectious diseases (i.e., HIV, Syphilis, Hepatitis C, etc.). The good news is that I tested negative for every test that he ran. It is interesting how we know the activities that we have done in our life, but there is still this nagging little person in the back of my brain that says, what if.... What if I contracted HIV from my last surgery; What if I contracted Hepatitis from that concert; What if I contracted Syphilis because my husband was promiscuous (if you knew him this would make you laugh-he is the most faithful/dependable person that I have ever known. He is my Old Faithful.). I know that the chance that I contracted any of these illnesses is remote, but our minds are tricky and love to cause undo stress. I think it is the lack of control in the situation and we second guess ourselves for ridiculous reasons. It is the gift of the unknown.
As I had written in my past post, the reason for visiting Infectious Disease was to eliminate the possibility of my fevers being caused by an illness other than Lupus or any of the overlapping conditions. I can't believe that I am saying/feeling this way, but the news today is that I have Systemic Lupus (SLE). Amazingly, I am happy with this diagnosis. Once I began this process the potential illnesses that my symptoms were mirroring brought the possibility of additional illnesses. It has been overwhelming over the past couple of months to mentally process the processes. Dr. Perez feels that the constant fever, fatigue, rashes, swelling, etc., is not due to an infectious disease process, so therefore he has to assume that it is an immunological illness (Lupus) causing my symptoms. I am quite numb actually. Happy and sad all in one. I can't explain the sadness, other than I wasn't told that it was something else and again the diagnosis of Systemic Lupus is driven home. I don't know if I was hoping that it was something else and wishing that it wasn't true. However, in the same breath I am surprisingly relieved to be vindicated and definitively know that when my symptoms rear their ugly head that I can say....ahhh it's just the Lupus and not something else. It is strange that I feel sad as I write this post, because I HAVE LUPUS. What does that mean? What will it bring? Will I continue to deteriorate? Will I stumble into remission? Will I have to accept the inevitable of Prednisone? Will I have to accept the inevitable immunosupressive medication route? Now there are more questions than before. I am such a stubborn person, that it took me a year to accept the diagnosis. Now that diagnosis in resonating through my brain and my heart feels heavy. Now I am back to one day at a time with Lupus at the helm. I feel as though I had child like wishful thinking through this process and now it is time that I grow up.

1 comment:

Peg Abner said...

Stubborn? Try nine years worth. LOL It wasn't until a year ago that I would say,"I have Lupus". Before then it was Collagen Vascular Disease. I just could not bring myself to admit that I had Lupus. It is scary. It's unfair. But what does one do? I try to just get through each day the best that I can. Good Luck to you! And know there are others out there...........