In my late 20's, a Rheumatologist from Marshfield Clinic diagnosed me with Lupus. I learned how to balance it pretty well over the next couple decades. Had a few surgeries in between. Hysterectomy adnomyosis (sp?) tumor and endometriosis. Had gall bladder removed followed by arthroscopic knee surgery. In my mid 50's, I had pain in right side of my back. Several mis-diagnosis later, was encouraged by my husband to go to Mayo where a Urologist diagnosed Amylodosis of my right kidney (some other names were added….guess I was first patient seen with this type). I opted to go through some experimental treatment…which did not produce any benefits and because the stent (which was added so that I could urinaurinate) produced too much pain along with the kidney and ureter being destroyed by the Amylodosis, so… we opted to have a nephrectomy. I have done pretty well in that regard.
A couple of years ago, I knew I was in a "flare-up" so headed back to Mayo. This time, to the Rheumatology Dept. RA, Osteoarthritis and mixed tissue autoimmune diseases were diagnosed. After speaking with Orthopedic Dr. about knees, hips, etc….I have settled on a plan to avoid replacement surgery as long as possible and come in for cortisone injections on an "as needed" basis (which I have done for my knees and hips). My ophthalmologist diagnosed Sjogren's and monitors my eyes. I have struggled with GERD and IBS since my 20's. My Mayo Rheumatologists opted for me to try Methotrexate (a brief time of adding Prednisone) and increasing the dosages to maximum. I began to have side effects plus my health insurance ran out (only carried catastrophic the past 14 months). The Rheumatologist and I agreed that I should discontinue drug therapy…because of maintenance costs (regular lab work, evaluations, etc.). I am doing "ok" as long as I don't push myself beyond my limits…which is my biggest challenge.
I appreciate input as to any ways to maintain or, hopefully, improve my physical condition. I manage to stay optomistic with a positive attitude and gratitude that things aren't worse. I do my best to make the most of every day.