‘They insisted I had anxiety’: Doctors misread signs of lupus

Nadia Tasher was a pretty normal 23-year-old until she began suffering from some unusual symptoms that led her to over 80 doctor’s appointments in one year.

Nadia's doctors told her she was suffering from a bad case of anxiety, but not convinced, she continued to seek medical help.

She told Cosmopolitan, “They insisted I was suffering from anxiety, and said all my symptoms were as a result of stress and panic attacks.”

The 23-year-old was convinced her condition was not a mental health issue and it turns out she was right.

Nadia was actually suffering from the life threatening condition, lupus.

The disease, which mainly affects females, causes the immune system to attack healthy organs and tissues. It can potentially cause blood clots and even heart attacks, in some cases.

Nadia first noticed that something was wrong four years ago, when an unusual rash appeared on her face. She told Cosmopolitan, “My cheeks were really red as well as the bridge of my nose, and I was getting more rashes across my arms.”

Lupus can cause the immune system to fight against healthy hair follicles and prevent new ones from growing, resulting in hair loss and thinning.

‘’It started off with my hair just feeling like it was getting thinner, but it got to a point where I would brush my hair and clumps would fall out.’’

‘’I always had really thick hair, so it was one of the things that knocked my confidence the most because it was one of the only things I really liked about my body.”

As if the rashes and hair loss weren’t enough to convince a doctor there was something seriously wrong here, Nadia also experienced dramatic weight loss, joint pain and intense fatigue.

However, despite her long list of symptoms, Nadia’s doctors prescribed anti-anxiety medication which she then refused to take.

Fed up, Nadia decided to take things into her own hands and after an extensive Google search she realised her symptoms matched those of the chronic disease.  

She demanded a series of blood tests, and even when all three came back positive, doctors still insisted the 23-year-old did not have lupus.

At her wits end, Nadia decided to see a private specialist consultant and within half an hour of the first meeting she was diagnosed with the disease.

“He could do that in half an hour and I’d been waiting for about four and a half years,” she said. 


Weekend vibes #boxing #blacktie #blackdress #spoonie #charityevent #cancerresearch

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Although the diagnosis came as a relief, Nadia now has to learn to live with her symptoms for the rest of her life. 

Determined not to let her condition stop her from living her life, Nadia has stared a blog about managing the condition. You can follow her journey here

Oh, and while we have you; don't forget to have your say in the inaugural SHEmazing Awards this May! It's time to vote, and you can do it right here!

Photo credit: livingwithalupuslifesentence.wordpress.com

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