In July, I wrote that I had cut back on the number of supplements I was taking. It was part of a plan I'd been working on with my new doctor (Dr. M) to eliminate any supplements that I didn't feel certain were significantly helping. This would save money and, possibly, liver function. I had already started cutting some of the supplements several months before that July post.
Beginning in about June and continuing all the way through the end of September, I started experiencing swollen and tender lymph nodes on an almost daily basis. I wrote about this in late August in a post called A New Phase of My Illness. I felt generally more weak and tired when this lymph node swelling would occur, and the monthly averages of my daily health ratings were among the lowest from the prior 24 months. It was clear that I had taken a step back, health wise.
I don't know why it took me so long to make the connection, but in late September, I searched through my daily health chart for changes near the time of the onset of the lymph node swelling and related symptoms. It was a week or two after I had cut a supplement called ImmunoStim. ImmunoStim is a private label concoction offered by one of my old doctors (Dr. W) and his, frankly, rather corporate medical practice. It's a sort of all-in-one combination of many of the usual herbal immune stimulants and modulators: Beta glucans, olive leaf extract, maitake mushroom, and others.
So I re-ordered ImmunoStim and within a week of going back on it, the lymph node swelling went away. Rarely has anything with ME/CFS been so clear and straightforward. I had completely underestimated how much my compromised immune system needs that particular supplement. So I'm back on ImmunoStim indefinitely.
Unfortunately, the respiratory issues that I wrote about in the A New Phase of My Illness post are still a problem and actually, I think, might be getting worse. I'm suddenly feeling very motivated again to start visiting doctors and seeking answers to this problem. It's obviously not going away on its own like some out-of-the-blue symptoms do. I'm working with Dr. M (the LLMD) but I'm going to "dual track" this search and pay a visit to my good ole Primary Care Physician. She's a great doctor, although she's been of very little help to me since getting ME/CFS. But, on this respiratory issue, I have a hunch she might be able to point me in the right direction. At the very least, she's good at referring to the right specialist. I have an appointment with her on Thursday.