I have been on holiday for the past two weeks. Sadly they were two very difficult weeks with regards to my health. The up side was not having to deal with work on top of the incredible pain I have been in.
On Monday July 18th I had my appointment with the Rheumatology and Auto-Immune Clinic at Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto. There I was seen and assessed by the resident flunky for approx. 1 hour and then he said he would go and brief the specialist Dr.M and be back with her in about 5 minutes. Over an hour later the two of them came in to see me. She asked for some clarity around items I had discussed with her flunky and did her own physical assessment. She asked me to show her the position I go to sleep in and showed me some slight modifications to the position to hopefully alleviate some of my neck and shoulder pain. Then did her own physical assessment and found what she believes to be a nodule on my right hand and has ordered MRI's of my hands. I still do not have a date for that. She quickly diagnosed me with Fibromyalgia and let me tell you when she pressed on the pressure/tender points the pain was incredible. It was everything in me not to physically lash out in response (but a natural response to someone causing that kind of pain). She ordered a huge number of blood tests (ran out of space on the form) and said she would see me back in November as the wait for MRI's is approx. 3 months. She put me on a medication to help my sleep issues and hopefully get me into restorative sleep. It is also used to treat chronic pain. Strangely enough the medication is actually an antidepressant but takes a fraction of the dose required to treat depression to treat sleep issues and pain. I can't imagine taking the dose required (almost 10x what I am taking) to treat depression and not be a zombie what a powerful medication.
I got a phone call yesterday afternoon to say that some of my blood work has come back and my levels are extremely high indicating sever disease and that she needs to see me ASAP. However, she is on holidays next week so they are squeezing me in on Monday August 15th (her first day back to work). The receptionist who called me was able to tell me that the blood work indicated either Lupus or Rheumatoid Arthritis but that she wasn't sure which. The Dr. would explain everything to me when I see her on the 15th. So it looks like we finally have some answers as to what is at the bottom of my health issues and found a number of not so nice issues on the way. I am still shaking my head at the fact that since I have been unwell we have diagnosed: Hashi toxcosis(have to separate the word otherwise spark identifies it as profanity..lol actually it is auto-immune thyroid disease), TMJ with a cyst on my brain at the jaw (still need to see my dentist about), 2 lesions on my brain in the white matter (no idea of the cause and they are not too worried at this point but recommend follow up with MRI's annually), Adrenal glad failure, nodules on my lung along with a thickening of the plural of my lung, oh ya, Menopause has begun and Fibromyalgia and believe it or not all of these are side issues!!! The biggest issue will be revealed when I see the Dr. on August 15th and it is either Rheumatoid Arthritis or Lupus. How on earth did all of these happen to me ALL AT THE SAME TIME???
The year before I got sick was honestly the healthiest year of my life. I had lost 32lbs taking me from Obese to a healthy BMI, was walking 5-10km a day and swimming laps (1km daily) in the summer and was beginning a strength training program. I was drinking 8 cups of water each day and eating 5 servings of fruits and veggies each day, I was sticking within my ranges for calories, fats, carbs. I have always struggled with consistently meeting my protein. I was also eating a high fiber diet between 35-45g of fiber daily. Still I had come a long way from where I was. That makes the past 8 months even more unreal and puzzling. I just wish I understood why this is happening and why all at the same time??
We spent my two weeks holidays doing family outings in the mornings and back in bed by the afternoons. I over did it which is perhaps why I was in such bad shape as far as pain is concerned. I ate poorly skipping meals. The new medication is playing havoc with my appetite and all I crave is unhealthy foods either salty or sweet. With our morning outings I had no problem getting my 20 minutes of walking in and I am doing well with my Tigger Challenge of 20 minutes of exercise each day for the rest of summer. That is about all I did well with while I was off work for 2 weeks!
Back to reality now. I need to get back to tracking my foods and eating healthier and eating 3 meals a day!
My goals for August 7th - 13th are:
1. Tracking all food and drink.
2. Continue with 20 minutes of walking each day.
3. Eating 3 meals a day.
4. Sticking within my calorie, fat, carbs, fiber and protein ranges.
I will blog at the end of the week to let you know how wonderfully successful I was at meeting my goals
I hope everyone is doing well and enjoying their summer!