Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Flare thee well

It's over. For now. The Lupus flare that had me in its grips for the past two weeks or so seems to have abated. What worked? I don't know.

It's been a couple of months that I've started implementing an integrative and functional medicine regimen including a complete change of diet and the addition of many supplements - slowly. Yet, I still had to turn to corticosteroids to pull me out of the depths of the flare; lessen the intense pain and fatigue and clear the fog from my brain. A failure? I don't think so. It's a combined process.

According to The Mayo Clinic, corticosteroids "mimic the effects of hormones your body produces naturally in your adrenal glands, which sit on top of your kidneys. When prescribed in doses that exceed your body's usual levels, corticosteroids suppress inflammation. This can reduce the signs and symptoms of inflammatory conditions..."

"Corticosteroids also suppress your immune system, which can help control conditions in which your immune system mistakenly attacks its own tissues."

There's no question that corticosteroids used for Lupus and fibromyalgia and the treatment of certain cancers and other illnesses works but they are also UNhealthy for a variety of reasons, including increased risk of osteoporosis, glaucoma, high blood pressure and Cushing's Syndrome if taken for a long period of time and in high doses by mouth and/or intravenously.

I hate them. So does my integrative/functional medical doctor Dalal Akoury, M.D. and she was distressed that it was my chosen course of action but I needed relief - fast - and I knew it would work. I simply haven't been under her care long enough to allow all her prescribed recommendations to work. And because I am in New York and she is in South Carolina, I must see her only on my visits there. I go next week.

But, I'm trying. I'm really trying. And I am seeing improvements. The flare was obviously caused by over-exertion and stress due to moving residences and the launch of my book. Now that I'm out of it, I'm continuing to add in Dr. Akoury's supplements one by one, ensuring that I have no reaction to the first before I start the second, third, fourth or fifth. I can't wait to see her again and discuss my progress.

Immune system disorders. My goodness, there are thousands of them that put our bodies in battle with ourselves. Stay tuned for more health updates! I know they are fascinating (tongue planted firmly in cheek).

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