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I have had health problems for 3 years now. It all started with fatigue and a rash on my face- the rash was extremely painful and persisted for 6 months until I went gluten free and it disappeared. I still get regular rashes on my face, neck and upper chest. The rashes I get now are different- they are always itchy but not as painful as that original face face, cover more skin and tend to last a day or 2 but can last for up to 2 weeks. The fatigue has remained- the severity can vary and I still struggle with daily living and have had to make many changes to my life (I now work part time as a result). I have also had abdominal issues but these have mostly resolved. Over the past year, I have been experiencing increasing joint pain- it is mostly in my left hip but can be both and I also get pain in my left finger and thumb. I also get lower back pain which seems to be related to my hips. I have been seeing a physio for this for about 6 months and despite religiously doing my exercises, my pain has increased and I'm getting it more across both hips. It's painful to walk and the physio pointed out my left side is extremely weak.
I basically avoid seeing my GP now- I've been tested for so many things I just think they see me as anxious (coeliacs, endometriosis, arthritis). I know stress can make my symptoms worse but I also know it's not soley due to stress. My lifestyle now is pretty ridiculous in terms of managing stress- I practice yoga daily, meditate most days, see a therapist, I'm vegan and eat a very nutritious diet, I've done all I can to remove and manage all the factors in my life that could cause stress or be harmful to my body. But I'm still struggling. I feel as though there is something else causing me to have these issues.
I was wondering if Lupus was something to cosider. When I read the symptoms, I do feel it fits with my experiences but I also feel I've been here already with several other autoimmune diseases. I don't wantt o be stucj in an unhelpful search for something that may not even exist but at the same time, I would like to know what is making me struggle so much and hopefully find some ways to help.
I was thinking about paying privately for a blood screen for Lupus. I did this recently for Hashimotos and it was worth it to just rule it out. Plus it meant I didn't have to try convince the GP- I hate going to my GP! Has anyone used private testing to screen for Lupus? I would be interested in any experiences/opinions.
I would really appreciate any advice.
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