May 17, 2008

Aches and Interferons

Posted in multiple sclerosis tagged , , at 12:30 pm by melissasummers

I am very lucky that I was diagnosed in this decade.  There are many that did not have the benefit of having interferon therapy available to slow down the disease progression.  Interferons do not cure MS, they slow down the disease process, help the nerves heal better after a relapse , however they do not work for everyone.

When dealing with interferons, one must get over any needle phobia. For myself, I had no trouble with the fact that I had to inject myself, what I do have trouble with is that the interferons make me ill.  One of the most common side effects is flu-like symptoms which ease up over time.  Flu like symptoms was a major understatement the first month I began injecting myself! I was very ill with fever, tremors and nausea.  Now, seven months later, I still get ill on occasion with a fever.

So, here I am on a spring Saturday morning, my neck, elbows, hips and ankles aching from a mild fever. I don’t like it.  I don’t have to like it.  So many personal MS stories that I have read early on in the disease were so optimistic, how bright and cheery life can be with this disease.  The negatives are frosted over in these tales with chocolate icing, hiding the fact that there is no sugar in the cake. I am not saying that life cannot be bright and cheery by no means, I am saying that it is perfectly normal to have moments where you can be free to say “I don’t like this!” and “No cake for me, thank you”.  I know how important a tool interferons are to fight this disease. I realize that my injections played a major role in my fast recovery on my last relapse. I harbor no ill feelings towards them..I share my life with them..make accomodating adjustments like a perfect hostess…and it’s okay that I just don’t like it.

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