So I've begun my quest to figure out whether or not I have lupus.
Here is the short version of the story: I talked to my aunt who has lupus to find out what her early symptoms were and how she was diagnosed. She had more severe symptoms than I do, but the nature of the pain she had is remarkably similar to mine. I've seen two doctors, and they are both willing to empirically treat me for lupus, but I want to wait to see a rheumatologist in mid-October before I make that decision.
In the meantime, I'm on a new NSAID for the pain and it is actually working! I feel great. I can pick up a glass of water with my right hand again, I can check my blind spot while driving, I can walk without being in agony, and I have enough energy to get through the day. I don't know why no doctor has given me this drug before. It's interesting that, without the pain, I also don't have the fatigue or the stress that I had before. Those symptoms usually go along with pain in these hard-to-diagnose cases, but it seems to be assumed that the stress causes or exacerbates the pain, and that the fatigue is a separate symptom. I wonder if the pain is actually the cause of both of the others.
Then yesterday I finally got the results of the genetic analysis of the fetus from my last miscarriage. It was trisomy 15. Out of four miscarriages, we know for sure that two were genetic abnormalities. This argues against lupus being any part of the miscarriage problem, which means that lupus is less likely overall. Whatever happens with the lupus investigation, I have to deal with the miscarriages separately. I could have more than one problem going on here, but since there is no real evidence of that, I'm leaning more and more towards being hopeful about donor egg.
To be continued...