Saturday, April 21, 2012

Pass The Benadryl, Please...

And the mousie medicine saga continues.

Yesterday, I started feeling like my skin was.....crawly. Itchy. On my chest and underside of my forearms. I tried to ignore it for a few hours until the DUH! moment occurred and I recognized it as a possible side effect of my rituximab infusion.

I'm currently taking 60mg of prednisone daily, which isn't helping my thought processes one bit. Zoiks.

I exchanged messages with Dr. Young Guy. Love, love, love that I can email him and either he or his staff will return my letter within minutes. He was concerned, and wanted to be certain that I wasn't having an allergic reaction. So I stood in front of my bathroom mirror, twisting and turning to get the best view of, well, everywhere on my skin.

Couldn't see any new non-lupus rashes, nothing reddened or swollen, and nothing that looked like hives. I just felt itchy. Dr. YG was satisfied with that and let me know that my next infusion will indeed take place UNLESS I develop any new symptoms. next infusion will have a bit different protocol than my first. Typically, second infusions go much quicker than the first since allergic reactions are far more common with the first dose. But to be on the safe side, my second infusion will be run just as sloooowwwwlllly as the first, and I will receive more methylprednisolone -- a type of IV steroid -- than I did for my first treatment. I am also continuing to take oral Benadryl to tame the itchies in the meantime.

So I've got an unusual drug scenario going over here. On one hand, my new larger (I'm used to taking 10mg. Right now I'm taking 60mg) daily dose of prednisone has me feeling pretty manic -- like I've had way too many triple shot lattes. And yet, when I add Benadryl to the mix with it's very sedating qualities, I seem to even out somewhat. Kind of. Sorta. I feel tired yet......when I talk I can't stop blabbing. If I feel happy, I'm HAPPY. If something makes me sad, I feel tragically despondent. Whoa. And underneath all those roiling emotions, there's this irresistible urge to just go lay down somewhere and sleep for a week or two.

Why, hello, Mr. Couch! Don't mind me.....I'm just going to lie down for a bit......klunk. Zzzzzzzzz.


John thinks that I'm not having an allergic reaction at all. He says that I am not doing a good job making my new mousie friends chasing around inside me happy.

Um. OK. Not sure how I would go about doing that. Suggestions, anyone?


Laura said...

Cheese. Eat lots of cheese. *solemn*

Also, yikes. The itching doesn't sound like fun, and I hope the second infusion goes well!

annie said...

You are one brave lady, Julia. This whole undertaking would have me so worried and stressed, and wondering about the side effects, but you're pretty calm about the procedure, and very stoic. I admire that.

So, I was going to say cheese, but Laura mentioned it already, so I say chocolate. Chocolate helps with everything, and who doesn't like chocolate?

Kate S. said...

Thanks for telling the tale in detail. I may need to have IVIG infusions, and while the actual med is different, the protocols are similar.

So I learning what the roller coaster looks like - thank you!

As for the mice - do what you do for all the other creatures in your life (doggies, crows, flamingos, etc. ) Talk to them. "Nice mousie. Go make me better, little mousie. "

Gill from the other side of the Big Pond said...

This itchy thing, it isn't like a precursor for an Incredible Hulk scenario is it? Do you remember the film An American Wherewolf in London? Ears not growing a bit are they? Seriously though, i value all this info, all in real world terminology and not medical gobbledy gook. Wishing you through this bad patch.

Omgrrrl said...

This comment might not be totally relevant to your itchiness....

But I was wondering.

What was the MOMENT, the SYMPTOM that drove you over the edge and made you seek diagnosis?

And what made you PURSUE diagnosis?