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painpearls 06-04-2012 07:53 PM

autoimmune mess!
I am brand spanking new here but wonder if anyone else hs similar issues or could offer some advice. I have psoriatic arthritis, fibromyalgia and hashimoto's thyroiditis (for the second time). It had ben resolved but then returned after several years. My TSH is in the low end of the normal range and my dr says my condition is stable/controlled, but my thyroid peroxidase ab is 227. My ANA, IFA is also positive but I have not gotten the titer result yet. Does anyone know what these results mean? I have lots of overlapping symptoms including joint and muscle pain, weakness, fatigue, migraines, neuralgias and skin sensitivities, as well as frequent rashes, as if I'm allergic to everything! Anybody?

luca689 06-05-2012 07:21 AM

Re: autoimmune mess!
Hashimoto's and psoriatic arthritis can cause a positive ANA. The TPOab indicate Hashimoto's. Your symptoms could be in line with Hashi's even though your thyroid levels may be stable, and could indicate an active period that just requires monitoring. I am not sure if they are in line with the PA. All that being said, you could have an overlap AI disease or or one developing and the ANA titre and pattern, as well as the secondary tests usually run with the autoimmune screenings can aid your Dr in seeing what is going on. You can also check the stickies on the lupus board for more info about lupus symptoms as well as the arthritis board for info on PA and it's development. Did you have any more specific questions? Are you in a PA flare? Do you have a malar rash or any specific shape or type of rash? I always get the "itchies" when I flare, lol.

painpearls 06-05-2012 08:24 AM

Re: autoimmune mess!
You did answer part of my question. I wasn't really clear because I'm pretty scattered/fogged, lol. But the thyroid antibodies being up means activity? So maybe that is making me feel yukky too? I do always have a mild butterfly rash (for years now) and my derm has documented it, as well as my other obscure rashes. It seems I have many lupus symptoms, although that's why they call it the great mimicker I guess, as it mirrors so many different syndromes. I have been tested for lupus more times than I can count at this point. I have had both positive and negative ana's, and when positive they have been both speckled and homogenous (at different times of course) but all with relatively low titers so far. I am in a tremendous flare at the moment. Problem is I don't know what's what! My PsA affects my hips and spine primarily and has done significant damage already. But the fibro and hashi's overlaps so much I can't tell which is causing what? Very confusing. I guess my question is how do I distinguish which is causing my symptoms, and therefore which to flare I'm trying to settle down? Jeez, lol, not sure how I could expect anyone else to know if I can't figure it out but I'm desperate and just having a really bad couple weeks : ( And I would also like to know if anyone else has similar overlaps and how they deal with it?

luca689 06-05-2012 11:17 AM

Re: autoimmune mess!
I have Hashi's, APS, limited systemic scleroderma and secondary Sjogren's. I know about the overlapping symptoms, lol. You know, I was just thinking, were you out in the sun at all recently? 10-15 minutes can make me very sick, and that was even before the sun sensitive drugs. Just a thought. Also, my rheumy says Autumn and Spring are always the worst time of year. I feel for you. I am going through a mini flare myself. If I were you I'd look into the lupus angle, too, as maybe incomplete. Are you on any thing like plaquenil or DMARDS? I wish I had some better advise other than "call your Doc" or the ever popular "get some rest" or "yep, this sucks" LOL. I personally think that they all flare all at once, so I'm more into symptom management at this point.

painpearls 06-05-2012 12:00 PM

Re: autoimmune mess!
Lol, Thanks for that! I know there's not a whole lot we can say sometimes but just knowing someone understands is everything sometimes : ) I have been on plaquenil, methotrexate and another I forget, all did nothing. I'm now on Enbrel, as well as Celebrex and pain pills (Norco/Dilaudid on BAD days) and prednisone when the inflammation is awful. Plus I get trigger point injections in my back and neck, and intraarticular hip injections with kenalog when I start limping too bad... its a hefty load to manage, lol. I need to talk to my rheumy about something for the fibro like lyrica or something maybe... until then idk... as for the sun, yes I definitely have been. I hadn't thought about that but I have a pool and a garden, so I'm sout in it all the time. I would hate to think that's causing it : (

luca689 06-06-2012 07:40 AM

Re: autoimmune mess!
I hope it's not the sun! Maybe it's just the changeable weather. But ya, I understand. I don't know much about Fibro but I thought it can flare too. I use spray on sunscreen the "sport" kind from the store with the bullseye logo, and then I can stay in the sun for about 20-30 minutes at a time without getting sick or reapplying. It's cheap and Consumer Reports rated it very highly last year. Maybe that might be worth a try, in case you are getting sun sensitive. I would be careful about using it on any plaques you may or may not have and use a physical barrier over those, if you have them in an exposed area. Dunno if it will help, but it won't hurt. I hate it when a flare makes me not want to do the things I like. LOL, right now I am extremely annoyed with my fingers. I don't know if it's neuropathy or what, but between the dull tingles and the numbness, it make me not want to knit, which is one of the things I do to keep from shouting loud angry words all the time. Whew, you do indeed have a lot to manage, so hopefully your flare won't last too long. I'm hoping for you.

painpearls 06-06-2012 09:34 AM

Re: autoimmune mess!
I really hope its not the sun also : (. I'm so sensitive to cold that I really worship the sun. I'm sure it has something to do with the rashes but idk about the flare. I'm starting to thik like u said that it was the weather change. I seem to flare every time it does. And the last 2 days were a little cloudy and it rained. I always dismiss the rain and realize it later, lol. I'm starting to snap out of it a little. But always, no matter how much I hurt I force myself to stay upbeat and get things accomplished. I'm gonna hurt either way as I figure it, so may as well NOT put my life on hold for a "good day" lol. Oh, and I don't have active psoriasis any more. I acquired all this from strep throat initially. The strep caused guttate psoriasis, which is more like a rash than plaques. Once I got light box treatments they went away but the arthritis kicked in a few years later : ( so far my hands and smaller joints don't giv me too much trouble. My hips are my nemesis! Lol. My ortho do says I won't b leaving this world with these hips. My spine also, I've already had one surgery on my neck because of the damage. I thk he said its the spondylitis type of PsA.... I feel for u with your knitting. I do a lot of crafting and I hope my hands stay unaffected for a while!

seebizzybee 07-04-2012 09:05 AM

Re: autoimmune mess!
Painpearls -

I just wanted to give you some hugs! I'm autoimmune soup myself and it can be so overwhelming and our doctors seem so clueless sometimes. We need to be our own best health advocate. Only we know the big picture, especially when we have so many different kinds of doctors and the autoimmune issues and their secondary issues cover a variety of specialties.

I have Psoriasis, as well. RA, Fibro, Interstitial Cystitis, borderline for the Lupus antibody (I think it has been in the positive range once, but doc says it's not active - yet), GERD, Gastroparesis, Autonomic Dysfunction, TMJ, Migraines, IBS (now not so sure about that one since the Gastroparesis dx), the list goes on and on (I need a list in front of me to remember and I don't have it right now - LOL ;)). I take MTX right now (just recently stopped the Plaquenil and Celebrex for a bit because of the stomach issues, but may have to start them back up - doc wants me to eventually start a biologic, but I have been told that I can't do any of the TNF blockers because of my positive anti-DSDNA - TNF blockers, like Enbrel, Humira, etc., can cause medically induced Lupus - she may try me on Orencia or Actemra).

I hope you get some good answers from your doc and some relief.


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