I’ve wanted to write about this for the past few weeks, but haven’t had the courage (or energy)…finally, I think I do…
For the past 3 or 4 months (maybe more) and at various times in my life, I have been what I would call “exhausted”!
My Psychiatrist messed with my meds (decreased Avanza) a little to see if that would help, but no change. He then believed it was because I wasn’t sleeping properly and started me on melatonin at night for a week and then this week I’m to take Mogadon every second night.
Finally though, I decided to see my GP to see what could be causing it, because I knew I wasn’t depressed and I was pretty sure it wasn’t all “in my head”.
My GP ordered a blood test to see if it could be anything physical causing my tiredness…he tested for all kinds of things including viruses and ross river fever – 5 viles of blood taken. I have also had a lot of pain in my back and some joints…I thought it was unrelated, but when I mentioned this he said it could be related – so he tested for Rheumatoid Factor also. Thankfully my mother was there when he asked is there any history of arthritis in the family, because I had no idea the illness my pop (Grandfather) had was arthritis! (he passed away before I was born)
He had a form of Arthritis called Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS) – so my GP did a test for the HLA-B27 Gene, which can be associated with AS. It came back Positive! I also had extremely high ESR & CRP – both are indicators for inflammation.
Now, on its own this doesn’t mean I have AS, but coupled with my symptoms it is quite possible. The GP started me on Celebrex – an anti inflammatory drug and so far it has helped a bit. I have to see a Rheumatologist for a full diagnosis, but I can’t get in to see her until April!
On top of the possible AS, I have a Cytomegalovirus (CMV) which can mimic symptoms of Glandular Fever! No wonder I’ve been so exhausted!!!
If you’d like to read more about Ankylosing Spondylitis, please visit www.spondylitis.org OR www.arthritisaustralia.com.au
The possibility of this diagnosis has been very taxing on me. I actually started hearing voices for a few days, but thankfully with the help of meds (Zyprexa) and some stress-relief techniques from my psychologist, they have subsided. I’m trying to take one day at a time and just keep my stress to a minimum.
My psychologist agrees that stress led to the voices. She thinks that, like dissociation, the psychosis is almost an escape from reality for me in stressful situations. I’d never really thought of it that way before, but it makes sense to me…do any of you have similar experiences with stress and dissociation/hallucinations?