Although I was diagnosed as having oedema on my left ankle in 2004 (having done a lot of walking/standing around on a hot day) this seemed to have disappeared within a couple of weeks. In December 2009 I suffered a bout of Iritis in my left eye. One of the Opthalmists questions was---do you have an auto-immune disease because this event is more commonly seen alongside the same? The Iritis cleared up and my Total Knee Replacement (L) went ahead in Feb 2010. The new knee bedded in very quickly but my left lower leg did not return to normal proportions.After many repeat vists to GP & Orthopedic (MRI;X-ray & Doppler) I was referred to Vascular Dept. where it was finally recognised that I might have Lymphoedema!! I then had to have formally reported visits to Doppler ultrasound and Xray before being referred to Lymphoedema Clinic at end Nov 2010. I was measured for compression stockings and discharged to the care of GPs practice nurse on the premise that 6-monthly Doppler & 2 compression garments every 6 months was the minimum care regime.GP allows me to carry standby prescription (250mg erythromicin--penicillin allergic & react badly to 500mg) for the occasional Cellulitis flare. There is some suggestion that I already had un-diagnosed Lymphoedema prior to my knee operation?
In April this year I started having bad headaches,sporadic sight blurring and sore left temple.I was sent to Hospital where suspected Temporal Arteritis (GCA) was diagnosed---CT scan; temporal artery biopsy and visits to Opthalmalgy & Rheumatology were arranged as well as immediate start on 50mg Prednisolone(steroids) and the introduction of Novomix to control blood sugar spikes.
I have noticed that my leg does not take too kindly to the high-level steroids either with frequent swelling of my foot even in compression.When the foot swells the levels of my blood sugar climbs as well, which is exacerbated by muscle weakness brought on by the steroids.How we take mobility for granted!
I am now down to 30mg Prednisolone but now also have a cellulitis flare to contend with. It doesn't come by halves! Thanking you for allowing me to sound off to someone. It has made me feel a little better!!!
An intriguing qestion to finish on--- both the Iritis and Arteritis have affected my left side (same as the lymph leg); as Lymphoedema is an auto-immune disease is there a connection?