Stress and Flare Ups - It's All True!

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Many of you know from my previous posts that my LS has been pretty well controlled for the last two years, and I've been only using a daily smear of over the counter hyrdocortisone cream.  Over the few weeks my elderly mother has taken a small but definite slide towards old-age dementia (she's just 90 and still lives independently with my 93 year old father, with a lot of support from me and my brother), my husband has retired and we are both still adjusting to the new routine, and this week my beloved horse had to be put to sleep. I work part-time and that's been hectic too.

For the last couple of days I've been aware that I'm a bit sore down below, but apart from making a mental note to get some thrush cream did nothing about it.  Last night I finally got round to taking a look - I was red-raw and an ominous white patch had reappeared round my episiotomy scar.  I started on the dermovate straight away (lucky I had a tube in date) and the thrush cream, and already the soreness is a little better. I'll probably use the dermovate twice a day all over for a few days, then just concentrate on the white patch for as long as it takes, with a once weekly application to the rest of the vulva, and then gradually taper off back to the hydrocortisone if possible.

It really illustrates just how big a factor stress is in the management of this disease. I was feeling so confident that I had it licked but you can never let your guard down. Sigh!

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12 Replies

  • Posted

    oh no kate not your horse...have to take time out...will get back to you.

    so sorry about your suffering

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  • Posted

    That's a heavy load of stressful events, Kate. And proof positive of how LS reacts to it. Mine is pretty much in remission after a year of treatment. I think I'll stay at twice a week with the Dermovate. Maybe flares are less likely if that steady extremely low dose is always there. I have an old mother who tends to get my goat and a risk-taking grown son.

    I knit and do other things that take meditative concentration. In my stressful job, which I retired from 10 years ago, I became good at noticing the early signs of being wound up and learned to calm myself. Just saying this for anyone who looks at this excellent topic. Stress is a word often used with the implication that it comes from outside us. Anxiety is what we generate in response and that's the real culprit in LS, what we have to learn to nip in the bud moment by moment.

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    • Posted

      I like those definitons and distictions between stress and anxiety--there's a lot of wisdom to consider in your words, Morrell.  --Suzanne
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  • Posted

    hi kate

    I'm sorry to hear you've had a flare up .....a considerable number of factors which most certainly you will slowly but surely be able to address. 

    Your horse has gone.

    I am so very sorry ....that took me completely by surprise...had to take a while to go off and shed a few tears. We have spoken about your horse?  And exchanged stories about riding and our activities....It was you? There maybe another kate...who may also have had a horse so i'm not sure but we spoke some time just after I joined the site...nearly a year ago now...?

    Well i shall be thinking of you and of your horse. I do hope you've been able to grieve. Please feel free to talk more about him and to celebrate his life. Will you have some kind of funeral or memorial for him? What is your favourite memory of him? And his name? 

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    • Posted

      Thanks Marey -yes it was me who talked horse with you before.  It took me by surprise too. I knew he had Cushing's syndrome, but I thought he had a few years of happy retirement left. However he had two bad bouts of colic within days of each other, the vet said he appeared to have a very rapidly progressing version which had affected his gut action, and put him to sleep right away.

      Unfortunately here in ireland we have very strict rules about the disposal of large fallen animals, we're not allowed to bury them on private land because of the danger of pollution of water sources, so a man with a lorry came and took him away yesterday: not a pretty sight, but I felt it would be cowardly to expect my friend whose land I kept him on to deal with it. I'm not likely to buy another one, not with the LS, so I have to figure what to do with a lifetime's stuff....I'm holding on to the saddle and bridle just in case though!

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    • Posted

      oh kate....I am so sorry. 

      I think that was very responsible of you to deal...its hard but has to be done. I have tried to think through these issues with mine. I really feel for you.

      And hey ...this isn't self pitying...you are giving us an opportunity to reflect on our own losses and therefore to remember what we really value.

      Glad you will keep his saddle and bridle for now...because as you say you never know!

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  • Posted

    My, Kate that is bit much all at once for you to cope with. So sorry.  

    And indeed it proves that LS is triggered by stress.  

    I had to backtrack with my latest flare up too.  Had almost forgotten the stress that went prior.   

    Is there a way to avoid this trigger?  How then to live?  

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  • Posted

    So sorry, Kate.  Thinking of you and hoping for smoother sailing.  Thank you for sharing your experience.  Please keep us posted.  --Suzanne
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  • Posted

    So sorry Kate. So much to cope with.  Interesting that one thinks one has the LS licked but it is a lesson in how we must all really take care of ourselves. Other people aren't going to know that piling on the extra workload/parental guilt etc  is going to have us reaching for our makeup mirrors. So we have to do that bit ourselves and just try to be a little bit selfish.  So sorry about your horse. Losing a much love, non-judgemental animal is a big one! 
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  • Posted

    Thank you all for your sympathy. I wasn't trying to be self-pitying, I was just really taken aback how quickly the LS reacted to my stress. Of course, it didn't help that I comfort ate for days, lots of sugar!
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    • Posted

      Hi Kate sorry to hear about all your stress,it is a big factor in these awful flare up,hope your mum & dad are ok,it is very sad for the family,but try to look after yourself as well,hope the. lS settles soon x
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