my story, symptoms

Another cold, loss of the use of my left arm

We left for Europe, and I rested as much as possible on that trip. I didn’t attend the conference, focusing only on paper writing, and generally tried to take it easy. Despite this, I began the week with another cold (approximately the 10th cold or flu I’d had since the beginning of April, meaning I’d had almost 2 per month during that period). When I returned, I saw my MD/homeopath again (on 9/25) and we discussed my entire history (extending long before the current disease had started). This led her to believe she’d found the right remedy, and both she and I ended the visit on a hopeful note, the first I’d felt in a long time.

Sadly, I reacted to the medication by getting worse. In particular, I began to feel shooting pains in my left shoulder on 9/28 and by 9/30 I could not use my arm for anything due to the pain, even turning the steering wheel of a car. My back pain reached its peak for the whole illness on 9/27 and I developed night sweats (usually a sign my body is successfully fighting something, so I was hopeful at first. However, my lymph nodes popped out more and I also developed an itchy rash between my legs.

I called my MD/homeopath, and she suggested a remedy, and once again within 24 hours my suddenly debilitating arm pain was cleared up. However, the remainder of my symptoms continued throughout the month of October: my back pain went up and down, I developed another cold, my lymph nodes remained swollen, and even occasionally ached painfully.

my story, symptoms

A catalogue of typical symptoms

Over the course of the next two months, I had had a litany of symptoms. In the first ten days of June, I had what appeared to be two separate colds with runny nose and sore throat. At some point after that, I had flu-like symptoms twice within a 10 day period, and began to experience a strange pain in my jaw that felt sort of like the muscles were stiff. This happened once in mid-June and again in early August. My husband had at one point developed a stiff jaw due to an allergic reaction to antibiotics, and it went away fairly quickly. None of his doctors had seemed too worried about it, and consequently I didn’t worry too much about my jaw symptoms.

Also in early August, I developed a rash on the back of my neck that I now know is a typical and recognizable sign that someone may be infected with Lyme. My husband noticed and took a picture (below). It didn’t itch at all and I assumed I had just scratched myself, never looked at the picture and didn’t take it very seriously.

Rash

My back pain and swollen lymph nodes continued as well, and in early August I finally decided it was time to go back to my MD/homeopath for advice as I knew that ongoing swelling in the lymph nodes was not normal and 6+ months of that seemed like long enough that maybe I should be concerned.

She continued to try to help boost my immune system, but my general impression was that whatever was wrong was not serious enough to warrant testing and that with more rest and the right supplements my immune system would start working properly. As did my parents (both in medicine), my doctors seemed to think that it was my lifestyle and past issues such as my mold exposure that was causing my problems, as opposed to a serious illness.