Saturday, February 03, 2007

Immune System Questions

I started to write this post the other day and got distracted.
I got Strep throat this week. I don't think I've had this since I was a kid. I have to say, it is truly wretched. I feel like I have shards of glass in my throat.
I went to the doc right away and got on an antibiotic, but the only thing she told me to take for the pain is Motrin and lots of it.
So, I can't eat because it hurts to swallow and when I do, it goes right through me because the Motrin is giving my stomach a run through. Ok, that was a bit TMI, I'm sure.
Frankly, it's a pretty good diet. :-)

Now, I've written a lot about the many colds and sinus infections I get. One time my neuro even said, "I'm surprised that you get so many colds." So I'm trying to figure out why. If my Immune system was working, then I guess I'd have relapses more often - and I'm talking REAL relapses. But there I have truly been blessed. I'll have systems related only to being sick or the fatigue, but nothing, knock on wood, that keeps me from functioning, well, regularly. Ok - nothing that keeps me from being able to work.

Do any of you have colds a lot? I know my kids are "carriers" as my father refers to them, but I take airborne at the sign of a cold and still get one eventually (I'm a believer - and an optimist apparently). Doc (neuro) even said that it could be dangerous to take anything that ups my immune system because I could have a relapse. But hells bells, I think I'd like a month at least without colds.

I'd love to hear your take on colds and our lovely MS immune systems.

To mdmhvonpa, I'm sure my husband would join me in the tub first - but he still may leave me there after the fact, if you know what I mean. :-) Though he did like the suggestion.

I hope you're all doing extremely well.
Take care!


mdmhvonpa said...

Heh ... tell you hubby that the lady folks LOVE it when you toot in the tub and then run away. ;P

As for the cold/flu/etc... yeah, I've got patient 0 and patient 0.1 that bring home everything from EBola to the Swine Flu. I'm sick more than I'm well ... usually with a combination of a cold and whatever the other one brings home. GHAA!! Late winter is the worst time too.

jen d said...

My name is Jenny and I am part of an online community called CarePlace, for people experiencing similar health related issues and their caregivers, including MS. We have recently added new MS related communities to the site.
As your blog relates to what we are doing at CarePlace, I was wondering if you might be willing to check out our site and let me know if you think it might be helpful to the people who communicate through and with you. People can join multiple communities, share experiences, check out info on medical conditions and treatments and form their own groups within the site.
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It’s really important to us to get feedback from people like you about the site as we develop features – the site is You can add me as a friend (jend) and let me know what you think.
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Friday's Child said...

My PCP is always telling me that I get sick so often because MS has compromised my immunity system. I've had plenty colds that have turned into full blown pnuemonia even when I was on antibiotics. I'm much more careful when I go into public. I'm a hand sanitizing fool and use my forearms and elbows to open doors. I've been on a low dose daily antibiotic therapy which has been helping some. It also keeps the urinary tract infections away which I was having on the average of about every three weeks.

So, yes, I do get colds and such often. If it's out there and I get close to it I'm probably going to get it.

Oh, one more thing. I've been under insane amounts of stress due to losing everything to Hurricane Katrina and trying to rebuild. The doc says that stress alone will lower your immunity system so I guess it's been a double whammy the past eighteen months.

Hope you feel better soon. I know how horrible the "shards of glass" thing is. *cringe* Take care of you!

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Anonymous said...

man oh man,i just read that taking echinachea(sorry for spelling ) which of course is for immune systems,help fight colds not to be taken by some one with auto immune disease,mmmm i cant figure out why,if our immune systems are weakened by this wonderful disease called ms,why can we help boost it with echinachea? i have had ms for 10 plus years and still am so lost when it comes to the how and whys ect... now im afraid to take airborne....some one help ease my mind......

Ashley said...

do you really want to boost that which is probably responsible for attacking your system?

Anonymous said...

I rarely got sick in the past, but since I have had MS I have been getting a lot of colds.

Nat said...

I was diagnosed in September and since then have gotten sick with a cold 3 times... I usually only get a cold once or twice a this is new for me... My GP says it could be because of the medication (I'm on beta interferon). I've also been told to avoid taking anything to boost the immune system and told that I can't be prescribed antibiotics. There apparently is a vaccine out there to guard against pneumonia but check with your neuro first...seems most vaccines would require you to come off of meds for a few weeks before and after taking it. It seems we can't quite win - I've resolved to popping Vitamin C pills and looking forward to the spring... :)

Sveta said...

Hi, my name is Sveta. I was diagnosed in 2001 even though I had the first episode 20+ years before then. I started looking into the issue of flue/cold recently after I read on a Russian MS site that people with MS (PwMS) rarely have colds and when they do they recover much faster than other people. That rang true because I was so rarely sick all my life even when I was a child. The advice there was to still make an effort to not contract flue/cold because it is such a load on your immune system that it may have some impact on the progression of MS. Btw, I think that the ThisisMS Forum is very informative. It has all kinds of info about treatments and diet. Thank you for this opportunity to share.

Lori said...

I am always getting colds. It seems I have a cold at least once a month. I am not sure how to defend against them anymore. Nothing I do seems to work. I hope this helps,,,knowing your not alone with the colds. :)

Anonymous said...


I had never made the connection of the colds i get about once a month to MS. That explains a lot. I would take airborne in the past, but it now sounds like I probably shouldn't. Thanks for posting