Well, for about half my life, I had been feeling a lot of joint pain. It mostly started with my knees at first. I thought maybe I had just injured them in some way. As time progressed I began having knee and back pain. I got older and began to gain weight, so that was the go-to reason for my pain for everyone (doctors, friends, family). People told me if I would just lose weight, everything would get better. I knew this couldn’t be the end all be all, sure my weight didn’t help, but I just couldn’t beleive my weight was the cause of
everything. But I just went on with life.
Well, recently (specifically almost right at the start of 2011), I began experiencing much more pain all at once. My back hurt, my wrists, knees, fingers, ankles, they all hurt. This wasn’t just any hurt, this was rather debilitating pain. I needed help getting up, walking, sitting, and I couldn’t even bend down or move far enough to lift the toilet lid for myself! Luckily, I had my fiance there to help me every step of the way. Eventually, enough was enough, I had to see a doctor.
The doctor has heard about my other mild pain before, but always dismissed it. This time, she finally opted for a blood test. Finally, people were supporting me and believed maybe something really was wrong. Me, my mom, and fiance waited patiently for my results. Then, on the lab work, there was something that showed I may be positive for Lupus. The doctor was convinced that it was a false positive, but wanted me to see a rheumatologist. In the beginning of February I saw the rheu doctor. He decided to do more specific testing. Now, it’s two weeks later, mid-Feb, and I just went back to see him today for results. He told me he couldn’t believe it, that he had thought nothing was wrong with me. But that the tests showed that I am actually positive for Mixed Connective Tissue Disease (MCTD), which I’m sure some know is a lot like Lupus, but a bit more mild. He told me he was very taken aback. Then he informed me I can either go on medication (a kind they use to treat Lupus) or go on Prednisone for a bit. So I’ve opted for the Pred. I’d like to stay away from stronger medications as much as I can, if possible. He then told me I must have a heart sonogram to make sure I don’t have any sort of damage as that may happen with MCTD.
Yes, the diagnosis is a little worrisome, and yes I have my concerns, but I know I’ll be okay. I’m a strong person myself, and I have at least 2 very strong people, my mom and fiance, supporting me. I’m just glad now to have a name for what is wrong, for all the people that didn’t believe me and thought I was just overweight or that it was just in my head, but mostly for MY peace of mind.
I’m certain I can make it through this disease, and am thankful it wasn’t something more serious.
This article is intended to convey general educational information and should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional healthcare advice.