Automatic Immunity?

Unfortunately the word “autoimmunity” doesn’t translate out to “automatic immunity,” not even diplomatic immunity.  It actually means that the body turns on itself and perceives healthy cells as unhealthy and does away with them.  Autoimmune thyroiditis is one form of an autoimmune disorder, so in essence, the body perceives of the thyroid hormone as being a bad substance and obliterates it.  While the body is producing enough thyroid, it’s destroying it as fast as it’s making it.  The body then produces symptoms of having low thyroid levels.  There are about 80 autoimmune disorders – I found a list yesterday, and on that list was fibromyalgia, which is not an autoimmune disorder.  The reason the author gave for putting it on the list was that people with fibromyalgia usually have an accompanying autoimmune disorder.  I haven’t had a chance to check into that statement, but it got me thinking.

Many of the autoimmune disorders have similar symptoms to fibromyalgia, and I have read more than once that autoimmune disorders can come on slowly with flare-ups and remission times, so they behave like fibromyalgia too.  What if fibro IS an autoimmune disorder, one that has not been detected?  Or what if fibro is really a misdiagnosed autoimmune disorder, possibly not the same misdiagnosed disorder for each patient?  In other words, 80 people diagnosed with fibromyalgia may actually have one of 80 autoimmune disorders.  Not likely, I know – some are fairly rare.  However, since fibromyalgia spirals into a multitude of symptoms, it is possible that the key symptoms of autoimmune disorders are covered by the spiraling symptoms.  Isn’t it?  I have no idea what I’m talking about right now, but I think I want to look into this possibility.

I’ve been tested for lupus more than once because my symptoms initially lined up with lupus symptoms.  Right now I seem to line up very well with Sjogren’s syndrome – in particular having to cauterize my tear ducts to get relief from dry eyes.  But I remember being tested for that as well.  However, since onset is slow, testing should be done more than once – I’ve read that a few places too.  What if fibro is a cycle of autoimmune disorders?  What if they come and go?

The description of autoimmune disorders really is what makes my ears perk up.  I’ve said for years that I felt like my body was attacking itself.  Almost like the opposite of a superhero.  Instead of being a Wolverine and regenerating itself regularly, my body is Anti-Wolverine and constantly finds ways to tear itself down.  When I find something that makes me feel better, it’s never a permanent solution.  My body figures out how to nullify the benefits, and I have to look elsewhere.  I know I’m not a superhero, anti or otherwise.  But if I were, my body would be the supervillain.

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