Hi, I am 30 years old. I started having joint pain at 13, 2 years after being involved in an accident where I inhaled a large amount of Chlorine Gas. By 15 my fingers, knees, then wrists started hurting. I was hospitalized when a radioactive dye xray showed some sort of activity in my knee, and an aspiration of the knee joint showed evidence of there being almost no fluid in the knee, all swelling was inflammatory. At the time I was under the care of an Ortho, he told us "it's some form of arthri***, we'll have to wait and see how it progresses." He never even mentioned a rheumy. Then at 18 I had a bad case of Mono, and for the last 12 years my body has turned against me. I have the joint pain from the first joint on my body (upper neck) all the way down to my toes. 4 years ago without doing anything to cause it I lost a tremendous amount of weight, I had chronic low grade fevers, my hair started falling out, my already diagnosed IBS got out of control, I started getting getting a slight red rash on my face, I picked up every little cold or infection someone came near my with, I had terrible insomnia, anxiety attacks, and intermittant kidney pain. This all ebbs and flows and every flare up gets a little worse, and to top it all off I have been trying to get pregnant for 2 years and no luck. Now I am starting to have memory and decision making problems, I blank out alot. The last time I spoke to a GP about this he said "it definately sounds like Lupus, here's a script for a full lupus panel and some other basic stuff a rheumy will want, and a referral." I got to the counter to take care of my co-pay and found out my husbands boss had stopped paying his portion of our medical insurance premiums we had been dropped 2 months before. No Labs, No Rheumy. My most recent flare started with a very frightening episode. I had some pain behind my right knee, for 2 days. The morning of the third day my temp that had already been up a little spiked and I could barely stand the pain. I looked in a mirror and had a red streak running up the back of my leg. Still had no insurance, (husband got a new job we just picked up insurance again) so I drove to a walk in clinic 15 miles away to pay cash. The doctor turned me around and sent me to the ER for his suspicion it was phlebitis (inflammation in the veins of the leg that can cause clotting). So here I was in a new city 3 hours from my family,and my husband was away at work, trying to find the hospital scared to death. It turned out to be phlebitis and a $3,000 bill. I don't know if it was inflammation from the supected lupus that caused it, but considering I am still in a flare that started before that I am assuming it was. I am scared, and getting depressed. My husband tries to understand what I am going through, but it does put a stain on our relationship. I haven't even discussed with him, the memory problems I am starting to have, but I am sure he has noticed that I am struggling to find words like "slot machine" that I would never before had trouble remembering. I know this has been long winded thanks for listening. It helps to know I am not alone.