13th August 2013
A few bits and bobs.
My previous entry – which was just letting off steam really – got generally positive responses which was a surprise (well, the volume of feedback was anyway). There was the odd person Tweeting who said they had negative experiences of the NHS but didn’t go into detail. I have had similarly grotty encounters, but to me the conclusion from that is that the NHS needs change and support not obliteration. Frustratingly I never ascertained whether the critics had read my blog or just reacted to the positive headline that was being reTweeted. Such necessarily pithy exchanges reward no-one, get nowhere and are ultimately a waste of energy and sadly reflective of the level of discourse we now engage in. “I like the NHS”, “I don’t”, “Oh”. Come back nuance, all is forgiven.
Anyway – I am being sent gifts. I have done a consultation for Exorex who have got me to write an E-book chapter for a campaign they are spearheading (I have covered this is previous blogs). They did a photoshoot to publicise this and the results pepper this blog entry. I also got a goody bag of their products. I have not used them yet, because I was also recently contacted online by a lady whose company have launched a cream called Dermalex which she sent me and so I gave that a go as I’d left my other stuff in a different city. Is it any good? No idea, as I am of course taking other things and am not in the habit of making endorsements, but it certainly isn’t uncomfortable and greasy like many creams, and my psoriasis hasn’t exploded nor has my head fallen off, so there are certainly positives (and when someone gives you something it is nice to acknowledge the fact). Fun though – Hollywood stars get free Rolex wristwatches: I get showered in unguents and emollients. I’m an A List biological disaster. As well as the chapter, your celebrity leper has also written a piece for a forthcoming Guardian health supplement : it should be out fairly soon.
Which brings me to my latest health check. I am still taking the Adalimumab and so have to have regular blood tests … and I resolutely failed the last one. Drinking without due care and attention I think. My liver fat count is at about 147 (it shouldn’t be higher than 61) and my cholesterol is at 8 (highest should be 5). I will have the exact figures later (they’re in a different city along with my creams and, more frustratingly, my headphones!). So this means no more booze till my readings are substantially reduced (which will take a few more months of check-ups and blood tests). The thing is, I have only been drinking at the end of the night (I never do it before work) and I have been going to the gym, exercising at home and dieting. I am a stone overweight and despite laying off cheese and carbs and, oh you know, joy, my belly is still unsightly in its distendedness. I’m even forcing down fruit , vegetable and flaxseed smoothies for breakfast but it isn’t shifting.
Nurse Annie popped in when I was lamenting these various woes and said that Adalimumab can slow the metabolism and manifest as a slight paunch in the belly, so that is contributing to my difficulty in getting rid of this stubborn stone. Great: my treatment once again seems to be responsible for something about me that I dislike. So I have to step up the dieting and exercise. And not drink. Remind me, what’s the point in being alive? I’m knocking back a peppermint tea as I type this : oh yeah, feel the buzz. I am at a stage in life where a treat is having a second Ryvita. My disposition therefore, is hardly sunny. I’d kidney punch Bambi for a G & T and a slice of bread (yes, bread, that’s not asking too much is it? Oh, it is). My skin, though, is in pretty good nick.
Which provides a timely reminder about the link between psoriasis and mental health (courtesy of the Psoriasis Association ; follow them on Twitter @Psoriasis UK):
http://www.commissioning.gp/news/article/1080/psychological-impact-of-psoriasis-on-patient-should-be-assessed/17/ (no longer available online)
And here’s the interview I did with the NHS Choices website that seems to be getting a bit of traffic: