I work with medical doctors and I use their knowledge shamelessly. They can not treat me, if treatment is needed, but I use them to decide if treatment is needed, antibiotics or testing. I showed 4 of them this rash. They all said the same thing, "Hmmmm, isn't that interesting." Not helpful at all.
One said it looked like bed bugs. It isn't, but it does look like the pictures of bed bug bites on the 'net.
My rash does not itch. It is possible that I have had it for more than 5 weeks, because the only way I noticed it was looking into a mirror without a shirt on.
So 2 weeks and 3 days ago I went to see a dermatologist. Ok, a dermatologist's P.A., but it was in the dermatologist's office. She said, "Hmmmm, isn't that interesting," and took a plug out of my arm. This is called a punch biopsy, because it is like using a hole punch to remove skin. I didn't look until the 2 stitches were completed. I had no interest in seeing down to the fat layer of my arm.
The PA called me on Tuesday 19 May, 6 days after I was there to tell me the biopsy showed a "collagen vascular disorder." I wrote it down, so I could google it later. Then she dropped the bomb, "Lupus." She did explain that this was not certain and that we would need blood tests to confirm or refute this. I was still slightly hysterical, but my work doctors said not to be. They did say she should never have mentioned the word, but that blood tests would probably show this was incorrect. So off I went to give blood on the 20th, expecting the results (because that is what I was told) on the 22nd. Nothing.
I waited patiently until Thursday the 28th. Then I called. Then I played phone tag, then the PA called again and told me it was fact. I have Lupus.
Except I may not have it.
My work doctors, without access to my lab work, said the chances that one test proved Lupus was slim.
My family doctor, who finally had to send someone to the dermatologist's office to pick up my paperwork, because only 2 of the 3 pages had been faxed to them, said it was possible, but not all that likely.
So I gave more blood yesterday and I have a follow up appointment with my family doctor next Thursday, the 4th. Hopefully I will have some answers then, but it is possible that I will only have more questions.
Until then I wait.