My lupus journey

Hydrotherapy

This type of therapy is carried out underwater to strengthen the muscles or joints. It puts lesser pressures on the joints as opposed to when the exercises are done on land. Hydrotherapy has the following benefits:

  1. Reduces muscle tension and relieves pain
  2. Boosts the immune system
  3. Relieves stress
  4. Rehabilitates injured muscles

I’ve had physiotherapy sessions previously but on Wednesday it was my first time in the pool for a hydrotherapy session. I’ve had three major abdominal surgeries; two laparotomies and one laparoscopic procedure so as you can imagine my core muscles are very weak. In addition to many other issues I’ve also been diagnosed with something called sensory neuropathy so in terms of my balance, I was all over the place the handrail and the floats were a massive help. Alhamdulilah.

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My lupus journey

What is inside my pink rucksack?

When I was given an option of which colour rucksack I wanted, obviously I chose the pink coloured one over the navy blue and black colours. I also asked for some wheels with it.

Inside the rucksack, I was to place something called a Total Parenteral Nutrition (TPN) bag and my Micrel Mini Rythmic™ PN+ pump. I was put on this after I spent 3 months in hospital post-surgery suffering from high-output which was depleting me of vital electrolytes from my system. TPN was replacing them just about at that time along with additional IVs of magnesium and potassium. I was constantly eating. The reason behind this was that I had a newly re-fashioned (yes, this is a medical term) ileostomy after an emergency admission which was literally pouring like a tap!

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My lupus journey

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) diagnosis while going through my GCSE’s and moving onto college

Rewind back to 2011. I actually typed this post up on the 14th of July 2011; ever since it has been sitting on my memory stick. And now I know what to do with it!

I was at my final year at secondary school which meant the most important exams were taking place. This is the time I started getting my external symptoms which made it terribly hard for me to pay attention and concentrate on these exams. And to top that off I was getting snide marks and whispers about the rash on my face. I didn’t let it bother me because I knew I’d never see these people again once I left school!

An average 16-year-old would probably not have been through how much I have been through over the period of 2-3 months in terms of health that too at a critical time in every 16-year-olds life. The symptoms I experienced were: extremely bad fever, nasty cough, joint pain. I would collapse because I didn’t eat anything, I was anemic (a blood disorder in people with SLE, it is the lack of red blood cells or the presence of red blood cells that do not have enough oxygen carrying capacity due to a deficiency in iron or vitamins).

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Reviews

Brain on fire

Imagine being misdiagnosed by the professionals and living with your deteriorating symptoms daily knowing full well the diagnosis you’ve been given is incorrect.

Sussanah Cahalan, a young lady residing in New York is living her dream life working as a New York post writer. She works with her boss Richard and co-worker Margo and has a partner named Stephen who is a sound producer. She has moved out of her parents house, who have split and her mother lives with her step dad. Sussanah lives in a flat on her own.

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My lupus journey

Kidney biopsy

On the 24th of March 2014, I received a phone call whilst at work to go to the hospital so they could carry out a kidney biopsy. I was called by my regular rheumatologist who explained I had been putting it off for too long now and my last set of bloods showed that my kidney function had declined by 30-40%. I was having regular blood tests done because I was taking mycophenolate to keep my symptoms under control which is an immunosuppressant. People who take immunosuppressant drugs need to have their bloods done regularly and monitored.

The kidney biopsy went ahead on the 25th March 2014; overnight I had a blood transfusion of two bottles. I had the kidney biopsy around after lunchtime; they wheeled me away into the procedure room on my bed when my dad had left after paying me a short visit.

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Prophetic medicine A-Z

Dates ● tamar

There are a large variety of dates:

  • Pressed dates (‘Ajwah)
  • Dried dates (tamar/burniy)
  • Unripe green dates (buṣr)
  • Fresh dates ( balaḥ)
  • Fresh/ ripe dates (ruṭab)

Dates contain sugar, fat, and proteins, as well as important vitamins. They are also rich in natural fibres. Dates contain a very high percentage of sugar (70-80%). It has both fructose and glucose, which have high caloric values. It is easily and quickly digestible and very beneficial to the brain. Dates contain 2.2% protein, vitamin A, vitamins B 2 and nicotinic acid (active against pellagra). It has traces of minerals needed for the body such as potassium, sodium, calcium, iron, manganese, and copper. The percentage of potassium has been found to be very effective for cases of haemorrhage, such as the occasions of birth or circumcision.

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Islam

Means of attaining barakah in our homes

Barakah. This is a word we hear often but sadly we are losing it from our homes, so we find no barakah in time, nor in sustenance or our wealth and children, so what then is the key to barakah.

There are 8 keys to attaining barakah:

Recitation of the Qurān

 قال الله تعالى: وهذا كتاب أنزلناه مبارك
Allāh has made the Qurān a source of barakah if we ponder over its meaning and we live our lives according to its teachings. And for this reason, the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said about the home in which Qurān is recited.

 (تسكنه الملائكة تهجره الشياطين ويتسع بأهله ويكثر خيره)

The angels live in it, the shayateen flee from it and it expands for the family and goodness increases in it.

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Prophetic medicine

Cucumber ● Qihthā, khiyār

Cucumber contains nearly 90% moisture, approximately 3% carbohydrates, less than 1% protein and small amounts of fat.

Cucumbers are very refreshing and have cooling properties and are often used in salads.

Ibn al-Qayyim (رحمه الله) reports:

  • Wild cucumber does not spoil quickly and it helps relieve prostate pain.
  • It helps relieve nausea, while its seeds are a diuretic.
  • When the leaves are used as a bandage, it will help against dog bites.
  • Due to its coolness, one should eat it with something like dates which would make its coolness milder.
  • Eating it with raisins or honey makes it milder for the stomach.

The type of cucumber called qihthā is colder and more substantial than type called khiyār. The best kind has small seeds. It should be eaten with honey. The best part is the pith.

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Thoughts

Why me?!

Life can go from amazing to bad in a flash. I’m talking from experience here; one day I was living my life going about my daily activities and the next day I was in a hospital bed fighting for my life subhānAllāh. At that time I didn’t accept the fact that this was happening to me and I kept on questioning Allāh ‘why me?’ I’m sad and embarrassed to say I wasn’t as much of a practicing Muslimah then as I am now. I know life is about improving and growing mentally and physically, one should also at least be aware of the farāidh (obligations) if nothing else.

“And whatever of misfortune befalls you, it is because of what your hands have earned. And He pardons much”

[Qurān 42:30]

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Prophetic medicine A-Z

Costus/sea costus ● Kust, qusṭ, qusṭ al-Hindi, qusṭ al-baḥri, ‘ood al-Hindi, qusṭ al-ḥalu

Costus is a herb whose botanical identification has been quite difficult.

Imām Bukhāri reported in his Book of Medicine that qusṭ al-Hindi and qusṭ al-baḥri are the same as kust or qusṭ, just as kafur is the same as qafur.

Ibn al-Qayyim (رحمه الله) mentions: There are two kinds of costus, the marine or sea costus and the Indian costus. The sea/marine costus is the white kind, also called qusṭal-bahri. The Indian costus is the hottest, while the white costus is the mildest. He also lists the Indian wood under the heading costus. He says that both kinds are hot and dry. When they are taken as drink, they help weak liver and stomach and fight colds.

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