Apprehensive, that was me; you know how they say that nurses make the worst patients? Well. it’s true! Today was day one of Rituxan/Rituximab infusions and you’d think I’d never had an IV before! But, symptoms of lupus and Sjogren’s Syndrome had gotten too great to be controlled any longer with the Prednisone and Plaquenil I take.
My rheumatologist and neurologist decided that Rituxan® was the treatment that would benefit me the most and have the fewest side effects. Before starting the medication, the nurse drew blood, sent the results to my doctor and gave me two medications: Benadryl™ and a steroid. Both were intended to decrease the chances of a reaction: So, that was the reason for increased restless leg syndrome twitching. IV benadryl was the culprit!
The first treatment was pretty smooth with only one disruption: the nurse needed to stop the infusion because my tongue became ‘tingly.’ That was an early sign of potential life-threatening reaction, so we decided to err on the side of caution and stop the infusion for a while. She resumed the infusion after about 20 minutes, but more slowly this time.
I spent the rest of the time; well, I had lots of things to do, but I slept-after I ate lunch at the infusion center. Yes, they delivered sandwiches to each large cubicle (@5′ x 10′), I sat in a reclining chair complete with television and heated blanket! I had brought books on tape, movies, Facebook, and twitter; but did I do any of those things? NO! I slept.
The next day, my skin was a little flushed, my doc said to observe it, but the flushing was gone by evening. So, all in all, day #1, no problems. I’m scheduled to have the infusions weekly x 4 then the doctor will reevaluate and determine how often in the future I’ll need them.
Fibromyalgia is a musculoskeletal condition which is mostly found in women and is considered nearly as common as Osteoarthritis. It can lead to a debilitating depression and social withdrawal. It needs to be clarified that fibromyalgia is not an autoimmune disease; however, many people with autoimmune diseases do have fibromyalgia. This confuses and lengthens the diagnostic process between the two.
Also, it has been thought that in Fibromyalgia, nerves are hypersensitive to any stimulation, but this is a theory.
The muscles of your body might hurt all over without any physical activity and the joints may also start aching, making you all restless, and unwilling to exercise. It eventually leads to depression and anxiety as well. Other symptoms may be chronic headaches, incapability to focus on things, abdominal pain and body stiffness.
While you can always consult a doctor, it is also necessary to put efforts to find a way to deal with the disease like this one without losing hope and letting it take control of you and make you weak. As they rightly say, ‘Where there is a will, there is a way’ and there surely is. Let me show you 5 ways that might help you to fight not only Fibromyalgia but many chronic pains. Continue reading →
For a long time, I’ve made posts long and lengthy. Then I realized, when I’m surfing the net, do I like to read a dictionary? an encyclopedia? No, short, sweet and to the point. So, starting today, it is short, sweet and to the point. Let’s start with inflammation. In lupus, whenever something is inflamed, it’s usually related to-though not always; lupus.
Inflammation of most organ. or parts of organs is seen by us as redness and swelling, or hot, and painful. Redness can mean many things. not always lupus. Continue reading →
What is lupus? If you’re recently diagnosed-or if you’re a veteran in seek of a brush-up on the basics, this is for you. Lupus ichronic: it doesn’t go away. What does that mean? It means that lupus will be in your body forever (until a cure is found). Lupus may be dormant for a while, but other diseases are likely present in our bodies and we don’t know it; like Sjogren’s Syndrome or Rheumatoid Arthritis. Often, these diseases are only too happy to step in take up where lupus left off! Now, you may be stuck with them, too!
Lupus is inflammatory and if there’s ONE thing you remember about lupus, it is that. Inflammatory, inflammatory, inflammatory. Whenever you may think of lupus or any autoimmune disease, they all have one thing in common: Inflammation. Inflammation of the sac around the heart:pericarditis. Infammation of the sac around the lungs: pleuritis. Inflammation of the stomach: gastrits. Inflammation of a cyst: cystitis.
How does that happen? Normally, our bodies have certain cells which recognize other cells as foreign. They ‘re job is to mount a defense, kill these cells and get rid of them. In lupus, these cells are either fewer or unable to do their job or are overwhelmed and overtaken by the foreign cells (sounds like a battle to me.) Sometimes we talk it is it seems that we’re on a battlefield of full scale war! Is it any wonder that the medications used to treat autoimmune diseases are often anti-inflammatories?
The next post will concentrate on listing resources you may want to familiarize yourself with. Remember, that, in an earlier post I mentioned that not every site is accurate, These sites have tried and true information; the only thing missing, is the how personable, or technically competent of your doctor who knows YOU and knows YOUR history. That is why it is always the best combination approach to get information from these sites and CLARIFICATION as to whether is applies in your case FROM YOUR DOCTOR.
So, where is all this inflammation coming from? This is an explanation that I found from YouTube that explains it all.
“Lupus is a chronic, autoimmune disease that can damage any part of the body (skin, joints, and/or organs inside the body). ” I ‘borrowed’ this definition of lupus (Systemic Lupus Erythematosous) from the website of the Lupus Foundation of America which deals with every aspect of this disease (lupus) that could be thought possible.
So, what is lupus? You’ll find more thorough explanations on the sites listed above and as I post more on these pages, but-what follows is a short video presentation s which is accurate and if you need to have an explanation of what lupus is for concerned friends and family members because you’ve just been diagnosed with lupus, YouTube is incredibly accurate with this video!
LUPUS. We, or at least MOST of us have lupus, or we know and love someone with lupus. But do we actually KNOW what lupus is, Do we actually UNDERSTAND the enormity of what patients, friend’s and loved ones face?
This VERY short presentation by the Lupus Foundation of America, grabs your attention like nothing I could say, would. Then I’ll attempt on a post basis to elaborate on some of the concepts introduced in this SHORT video.
This podcast is one of a series produced by the Lupus Foundation of America for May which is Lupus Awareness Month. It can also be found in the archives maintained by C-span, available for public domain use. The Speaker interviewed is Dr. Diane Kamen, Associate Professor of Medicine, Department of Rheumatology, of the Medical University of South Carolina.