I told her in a nutshell about all the diseases I have had over the course of my life. When I was in my 20’s I developed Graves hyperthyroidism. Then came endometriosis. Then fibromyalgia. Then osteoarthritis. Then diabetes.
Now we are looking at the very real probability of Sjogrens Disease. It is an autoimmune disease, as is Graves, endometriosis, and some say osteo and fibro, as well as diabetes. I have been reading up on Sjogrens, and from everything I’ve read, there is no doubt in my mind that I have it. All that is necessary now is for me to get the blood work done and get confirmation of the inevitable.
I have had worsening dry eye and dry mouth over the past few years. Always worse during the fall and winter months because of the dry furnace air blowing in the house. It’s like torture, like someone aiming a blowtorch into your face. My eyes are so dry I worry about corneal abrasion. I am using preservative free eye drops like crazy and it barely makes any difference. I got the humidifier out last night and have had it on full blast all day. I even ordered a new one for my bedroom, because I always wake up in the morning with a stuffy nose. I wake up in the middle of the night out of a dead sleep, mouth so dry I must take a sip of water….really fun. My lips are dry, despite slathering on vaseline every night before bed. Fun Times.
I’ve read that Sjogrens usually hits women and usually between the ages of 40-60. I’m 58. I believe I’ve had it for the past 3 or 4 years at least. I finally sought help because the symptoms are getting ridiculous. I can’t live like this anymore.
I have lived with the chronic pain of fibromyalgia for 31 years and osteoarthritis for about 15 years. I also have high blood pressure (30 years). I have carpal tunnel, diabetes, sleep apnea, a hemangioma tumor in my lumbar spine, chronic severe feet pain, insomnia, eye problems, and more. The fun just keeps on coming. I’m tired.
I had xrays done of my lumbar spine, hands and feet on Friday. I am waiting to get some red tape settled before I go for my blood work later this week. I see the nurse practitioner again in a month. I am hoping to get a definitive diagnosis then, and some treatment for this extremely annoying and very miserable “latest” thing in my body. I am aware that some of the meds used to treat this thing have some not-so-great side effects. I imagine the side effects may be more aggravating than the disease but I have to try.
So I’ve always heard that autoimmune diseases usually come in groups, rarely just one. I think I’ve had quite enough. I’ve spent over half my life accumulating illness after illness after illness. I think I’ve had more than my share. I am really sick and tired of being sick and tired. Enough already.