I tried to fight it but...
Well, I think that the unthinkable has occurred. I got a cold! You may be thinking, "Brie, it's just a cold! Eat, rest and staying hydrated is key." Yes, it is key but as a Lupie, my body fights a cold much more differently than a healthy person would, for a number of reasons.
A Lupie's body is very fragile because their body is already fighting itself for one and for two, most Lupie's are on Immunosuppressant drugs. Immunosuppressants are used to help with autoimmune diseases like Lupus where it weakens the immune system, suppressing the diseases reaction. However, when the immune system is weakened, it allows for a Lupie to get a cold, an infection or the flu quicker and the ability to fight it off harder. So that means that I can get sick quicker than a healthy individual and a person may take a week or two to get over the illness but for me it could take much longer.
At this moment, I take 3 Immunosuppressants--Prograf, Mycophenolate, and Prednisone. These are the 3 drugs that I will take for the rest of my life.
Prograf is a drug that I take for my Kidney Transplant. This drug weakens my immune system so that my body won't reject the kidney, tricking my body to think that the kidney is my own. Without this drug, my body would be able to tell that the kidney doesn't belong to me and would reject, making a HUGE problem for me. I only started this drug once I received my transplant.
Mycophenolate or Cellcept is a drug that I was taking way back when I was trying to save my own kidneys. My nephrologist (Kidney doctor) explained that this drug is like a patch on a tire. It also helps with weakening the immune system, helping Prograf with getting my body to accept the new kidney as its own as well.
And last but not least,
Prednisone I've been taking this drug for so long I know this drug with my eyes closed. Prednisone is a steroid that helps with immune system disorders such as Lupus, arthritis and helps to reduce immflamation. It decreases the body’s ability to respond to Lupus by reducing the symptoms such as a malar or butterfly rash, swelling, immflamation, joint pain, etc.
So Lupies and those with chronic illnesses, try your hardest to stay away from individuals that are sick or becoming sick. Especially because it is Flu season. Even the smallest sign of a person being sick can get you sick. Make sure to wash your hands and stay clean. I have a small travel can of Lysol that I use to sanitize. You may not use it now but it may become handy one day! If you do get sick, REST! Resting is where the body has a chance to repair itself. Take that Saturday and/or Sunday to just relax.
So now I am at home, resting, eating soup, taking meds and staying hydrated. I always tell people that I can’t afford to be sick, not because of money or anything like that but the time it takes to get back to normal! Time is precious and valuable. Ain’t nobody got time for that!
Did You Know?
An estimated 1.5 million Americans and 5 million people worldwide are living with lupus.