03-26-2013, 12:12 AM
Hello, my name is Antonia. I was diagnosed with lupus twice. Weird? I know. Let me explain. When I was 12 years old I started getting small rashes on the folds of my arms. Went to the dermatologist and the verdict was eczema. Next I located a lymphnode the size of a golf bsll on the left side of my neck. I had it removed as well as other lymphnodes under my arm. They were being checked for cancer. They were benign. As I got older I had more symptoms, tests and extensive hospital stsys. My eczema was do bad that it covered me literally head to toe. I had fevers on a daily basis. The highest was 105. Chest pains and nose bleeds. Hair loss and stiff joints. I felt like a freak! Thank God I had my mom to take me to the doctor and be at my side. Around 15 years old I was diagnosed with lupus. I was taking a lot of medications so the only one I can recall are plaquenil and prednisone. So fast forward to when I was 18. My skin had completely cleared up and all my symptoms just disappeared. I was soooooo happy! Normal life! No more meds. I had remained symptom fre until june of last year. I was 23, married and I had just had my third child a month earlier. My family was gathered for my daughter's first birthday. I remember eating a hamburger. As soon as it hit my stomach I had the most excruciating pain. I couldn't catch my breath. I started to become extremely fatigued and my joints were stiff and swollen. I also had a lot of sharp pain while breathing. The one thing that made me run to the doctor was when I had taken a part time job in july and after six months I had to quit because I was having bad dizzy spells from being on my feet for a long time. I also started getting nodules on my lower legs. I went to Duke Rheumatology in February and took a lot of tests. I was scared that my lupus was back. I gave my records to the doctor and she didn't think that I had lupus. She thought it was RA. She put me on plaquenil and volteran. I got my test results back a week later and the doctor told me that it was indeed lupus. I had a positive ANA (1:2560 titer speckled pattern), positive for anti-ssa antibodies, high sed rate and I am anemic. I already knew that from childhood. I have an appointment next month. The doctor said that we will discuss further treatment. I just manage taking a day at a time. I will not be defeated. Ii just need some of you to relate to me and how hard the road to diagnosis was and how difficult are some days.