Multiple autoimmune diseases
I was wondering if there were others with multiple diagnosis. I have 8 autoimmune diseases and 6 other long term illnesses. I can’t find anything on the internet for that many. Is that a wierd thing or just they don’t study that kinda thing.
Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the Autoimmune Diseases Support Group.
Hi @denadet, welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. I've been blessed by a few autoimmune diseases but not 8. I know there are others here on Connect with multiple autoimmune diseases and I think a lot of them post in the follow discussion.
Groups > Neuropathy > Living with Neuropathy – Welcome to the group
I think somebody studies the number of autoimmune diseases. Here are some sites I found that identify all of the different types.
There are more than 100 Autoimmune Diseases
Like you I have multiple autoimmune diseases. When I sought treatment at Mayo in Rochester in the doctors felt that all of mine would stay in the endicrine system. Not so. I now have RA and all of its variants, alopecia areata. And pemphigus. I’m still developing them at age 70.
Hi @marylcsw, I see this is your first post and I would like to welcome you to Mayo Clinic Connect. Thank you for sharing. I have small fiber PN and polymyalgia rheumatica which is currently in remission. Are you able to share any treatments that help with your health conditions?
Hi @johnbishop. It certainly is nice of you to share your experience and knowledge and support and direct the folks here. I’ve never been a member of a group like this, nor do I participate in social media. My story began in 2014 when I began having unexplained twitches and cramping in my shoulder and then my legs. It progressed quickly and the pain and sleep deprivation was very difficult. An MRI shows white matter brain lesions and the initial diagnosis was thought to be MS. As some may not be aware, there is no definitive test for MS. Many meds were tried to alleviate pain and sleep with no success. No sleep apnea – had a sleep study done. Waited 2 years while my neurologist took the “wait and see” approach. The trouble was my symptoms continued to increase to the point my pain was not allowing any sleep at all. I was prescribed Vicodin and cannabis. Sleep got slightly better and I was obviously out of it all the time. Like many here, I have to choose between the pain or the side effects of the meds. I was an entrepreneur who had worked for myself most of my career. Have Meniere’s Disease which thankfully is in remission. In the meantime, back issues popped up, and the next thing I know, I’m having spinal fusion/stenosis surgery which involved fusing 4 vertebrae and 3 discs together. The operation made my SFN worse and created foot drop in my left leg where a permanently crushed nerve gives me increased numbness in my left leg from my hip to my toes. I have little sensation in my feet. I share my story to help. Many here face far more daunting challenges than I. However, I joined the group to help. The time suffering BUT also learning was invaluable. My advice: Believe what your body tells you. You are not crazy. Always get a second opinion. My second neurologist ordered core samples of my calves and thighs and confirmed SFN MS and SFN are often mistaken for one another as symptoms are similar. Lyrica has helped me tremendously. To rehab my back, I did PT at home for 3 months, outpatient for 3 months and now I strength train 3 times a week. It helps. It’s counterintuitive, but it helps. I’m off opiates but suffering more pain. Cannabis helps but is not a cure all. I take 2000mcg of B12 every day. My SFN is supposedly idiopathic and potentially non length dependent. I’ve read people wondering if SFN can cause twitching, bladder control, cramping, and all kinds of symptoms which will make you think you’re crazy. It can. You’re not crazy. Somedays I can barely walk 100 yards. I’m in my 50’s, pretty good shape, not overweight and I try and eat well. I’m far from perfect. One of the many things I’ve learned relates to pain. Trying to divert your brain from focusing on the pain is key in my opinion. Whether it’s medication, laying down, applying heat (I do), wearing the right socks ( I use Footjoy golf socks. Pricey but worth it). In general I find if I can try and focus on something else it can help, but some days I can’t get out of bed. Try and gather as many “tools” as you can. Exercise, yoga, meditation(about to try), acupuncture (didn’t help me), massage, medications. You can buy a TENS unit on Amazon for under $30 which will stimulate and not solve the pain, but help with the distraction. I wish you all well. I’m still learning. I’m happy to share what I’ve learned if it helps in any way. Happy New Year and best of luck to all.
Sure. I was diagnosed with juvenile myxedema at age 12. At that time I was hospitalized for a week while they began treatment with thyroid. At age 27 I was diagnosed with ovarian failure. In my 40’s I began to have problems with lichen planes. My 50,s brought RA and Shougruns. I was started on methotrexate, but had liver issues. I was then started on Enbrel which managed fairly well for a few years. Then my rheumatologist began switching meds due to an elevated Vectra score. After trying Humira and Orencia, he switched me to Actemra infusions. After my third infusion, I developed a rash that was very resident to meds. My dermatologist referred me to a specialist who diagnosed me with RA in the skin. In the interim I changed rheumatologist. My new rheumatologist retested me and found that I had latent TB. Following treatment for that I was referred to an ENT for sinus issues. After surgery, I had difficulty swallowing. The ENT referred me to a gastroenterologist who attempted to dilate a strictur. She gave up after three tries and referred me to a specialist. He performed several dilatation (25) before diagnosing esophageal Pemphigus vulgaris and referring me back to rheumatology. He stated that he did not treat it and referred me to dermatology. She recommended Mayo. The team there recommended Rutuxin. I’m still having issues with the stricture and pemphigus, but I’ve been able to go 3 months without dilatation. Prior to that I could only go 3 weeks. Hopefully with time the stricture and esophageal inflammation will resolve. My most recent autoimmune is alopecia areata. Dealing with hair loss has been stressful. I’m hoping that with treatment it will grow back.
Hi @givinghope, welcome to Connect and thank you for sharing. I like your @membername…it's appropriate for all of us here participating on Mayo Clinic Connect. Sharing our health conditions and treatments that have helped us does give new members hope and lets them know they are not alone so thank you!
Have you been tested for scleroderma??
@johnbishop – thank you for making me feel welcome. I’m here to hopefully be part of the solution:)
Yes that test was done when I first presented with Pemphigus. It was negative. Also my rheumatologist screened and felt that the test was accurate.
Yes. It was negative.