Okay, hope y'all have your thinking caps. So about a month ago my husband got influenza. Seemed to recover just fine, or so we thought. Ever since then he has "spells" where his joints are extremely sore (to the point he can barely walk or get up off the couch), he has a low-grade fever, some nausea, and swelling (mainly localized to the soles of his feet, his hands, and his forearms). With the last spell he started a very small rash on the base of his neck and one of his feet. It hasn't spread since then. It lasts about 4-5 days, then he'll go 2-3 days feeling great, then it comes back. He's had a round of steroids without any effect, and a round of antibiotics (old-school doc was thinking it might be strep because of the soreness, nausea, and rash). Nothing has helped. Does ANYONE have ANY guesses as to what this could be? What we could have the doc test for? He's calling again in the morning but I know they're not going to have any ideas.
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What the heck is wrong with my husband?
I don't have enough time right now to provide links or anything but I've heard of viruses triggering autoimmune activity and that is exactly what it sounds like to me. I'd have tests done for autoimmunity ( I actually do have an autoimmune disorder and everytime I get a virus this happens to me, down to the rash).
We were going off symptoms, but now that you mention it I'm wondering if it was his first "flare".
Marimara and Katelove, I'm off to google autoimmune disorders and post-viral syndrome! Thanks for the leads!
I was also going to suggest reactive arthritis, but the lack of response to steroids threw me off. My husband has a form of autoimmune arthritis that became really acute when he had a sinus infection. I would definitely either encourage him to see a rheumatologist or at least have the regular doc order the right lab work for autoimmune disorders. Good luck and I hope he feels better. I certainly know we were all miserable during that flare :(
Also, just have to put in a plug for going gluten-free. It has made a huge difference in his overall level of inflammation/ pain.
He just had a followup yesterday after having a new round of bloodwork done, and the doc thinks it's a post viral arthritis from the influenza-like illness he had last month. His blood is still showing inflammation. He did give him a referral to the rheumatologist, but he can't get in until May. In the meantime he gave him a prednisone taper and prescription-strength Aleve. I wasn't too hopeful with the pred since it didn't work last time but it seems like it's helping now. I'll run going gluten-free by him, last month I would have said there was no way in hell he'd agree but since he's been sick he's been trying to make better food choices so he might be up for it.
Also sounds alot like Lyme Disease. There are two kinds.......one that produces an instant rash and is usually treated with drugs instantly...and the recovery is good....the other does not produce a typical bulls eye rash and is more viral and is considered close to impossible to cure. Often called Chronic Lyme Disease--but that's an unoffical disease. Often misdiagnosed as ....well things like MS, LUPUS, RA, Chronic Fatigue, Fibromyaliga, etc. Look at teh site www.natcaplyme.org. There are some basic blood tests taht a doctor can order, but those are not always accurate...........there are two labs in the US that can do more specific testing as well......feel free to PM for more info.
Hope he feels better.
I hope this treatment does the trick. Autoimmune stuff sure runs the gamut of crazy elusive symptoms.
Im actually posting again to encourage him to look into an anti-inflammatory diet in general since he might be extra motivated right about now. My husband mostly follows that and also takes fermented cod liver oil. Believe me, it was a moment of severe pain and desperation when he decided to stick with these changes. The cod liver oil isn't just a fun fad ;) but he has seen huge improvements and much fewer flare ups. Well good luck again!
Wow, I checked out that lyme disease link and he's got at least 1 symptom out of every category they have listed. And he spends a ton of time outdoors during the summer. I'm supposed to go give an update to his doctor today (I work at the clinic) and I'll ask about that. We're going to see if he can get into see a rheumatologist at Mayo any faster than he can here, too. And I think I'm just going to start incorporating a more anti-inflammatory diet into our lives, it's more healthy anyway.
- What the heck is wrong with my husband?
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