Psoriatic Arthritis

I am a 29 year old female, I have struggled for 3 years or more with pain, inflammation and countless different “injuries.” I’ve had people look at me and say “you’re not sick, you’re a hypochondriac,” even family members. I’ve had people tell me I was lazy because I was hurting and couldn’t move. The struggle of having people say this really makes you think, am I really a hypochondriac. It makes you feel alone, and like a burden. I went to doctor after doctor, test after test, until finally found a doctor who set his mind to figure out what was wrong with me. I felt like all the other doctors thought I was “pretending” or thought didn’t have anything wrong with me. Until finally had a doctor sit down and talk to me, and listen to me. He sent me for a couple MRI’s which came back normal all but having a couple purtruding disk. He finally ask me if I had anyone in my family who had psoriasis. I explained to him that I keep it in my scalp and my mother also has it. He then figured out what the route of the problem is. I’m not sure that many people have even heard of what he diagnosed me with because often it’s gets misdiagnosed. Psoriatic Arthritis is an autoimmune disease that attack your joints, causes inflammation and breaks down your joints. In the easiest way I know how to explain, my immune system attacks my body when it doesn’t have anything else to fight off. Often I stay really sick, I’m always fatigued I feel like I never get enough rest. I swell from the inflammation uncontrollably. It’s hard to move around at times, especially in the mornings. Often, I can’t participate in events and often miss work due to my illness. Unfortunately, I am allergic to steroids of all kinds so I can’t take them to stop the inflammation. With my disease I have had to give my self injections of methotrexate (which is a chemotherapy drug) which lowers my immune system so it don’t attack my body. This drug is the worst, I stayed so sick to my stomach and for days after my injection I was so fatigued I didn’t want to raise my head. I was in a daze for days afterwards feeling like I was lost, often forgetting what I did hours before. I took it for about 5 months and ended up having a GI bleed so the doctor made me stop the injection. The pain since has been so uncontrollable since then that I’m stuck on pain killers until I can get approved through a program for another injection called “Simponi” which typically is around $5,000 an injection or more. So for weeks I’ve been waiting to get approved for the program so I can get this medication. The struggle with this disease like most autoimmine diseases is most people don’t realize you’re even sick. Most often people are so critical and don’t understand. I often feel alone because my anxiety makes the situation worse when I’m in pain. I pray that one day people will come to not be so critical and that they can find a cure for autoimmune diseases. That the cost of the medication to help people with autoimmune diseases aren’t so expensive.

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