I guess I got a little ahead of myself in Monday's post. Turns out that my doctor found traces of protein and red blood cells in my urinalysis from my appointment last week - so instead of 3 months, I'm going back to the doctor in 6 weeks. Bummer!! I was so proud of the fact that I was going to go so long between appointments - an indication, I thought, of how well I was doing.
Truth is, I kind of expected my test results to reveal a little disease activity (and, in this case, possible kidney involvement, which I've had many times before.) I've been running at full speed the last few weeks - the excitement of my book coming out, the book signings sprinkled here and there, and all of the "to-do's" that I've convinced myself have to be done pronto - all of which have caused me to skimp out on my rest. I noticed one of my fingers swelling just a bit about a week or so ago...but I'd convinced myself it was because I'd exercised outside in the heat, or from too much salt in my diet. In fact, I didn't mention it to my husband because I figured it wasn't anything to be concerned about. Boy, was he upset when he found out I'd sloughed off a swelling digit! And you know? He was right to be peeved. Just like that, I had slipped back into that familiar phase of ignorance that I've been guilty of in the past. Don't want to admit the disease is afoot? Just find something else to blame it on. Ugh! I'm so predictable! I suppose the three-prong approach I mentioned on Monday won't just be something to consider over the next few months. It's now become a must. At least I prepared myself to adjust.
As far as the kidney involvement goes - this is how the routine has gone in the past: a trace of protein shows up in my urine (indicating that my kidneys aren't filtering properly). I do a 24-hour urinalysis to determine if this, in fact, is the case. If it is, we up a medication slightly, and then I get retested soon after that to see how things are going. And, yes, I usually have to curtail my activity level at the same time. I find that reducing stress and fatigue make just as much of an impact as increasing a medication.
I'll be sure to keep you posted!