When you start experiencing unusual pains, mysterious body issues and other hard to explain symptoms that ail you, you’d think that an immediate trip to the doctor can help solve your health dilemmas. Unfortunately, there are some times when the doctors themselves are having a hard time identifying certain problems and disorders of their patients. There are a lot of symptoms that can be non-specific and varies depending on a person, making it even harder to pinpoint. Below are some of the most notoriously hard to pin down health problems.
1. Celiac Disease
There’s a lot of confusion surrounding celiac disease—it’s an immune reaction to gluten that triggers an intestinal inflammation and currently, it takes a patient an average of 6-10 years to be diagnosed properly. People who suffer from this problem, would in theory, have digestive concerns when it comes to consuming foods with gluten like barley, wheat, and rye, when in fact, only half of the number diagnosed with this disease have experienced weight loss and diarrhea. Celiac disease can also cause a patient to have dry, itchy skin, joint pains, headaches, and heartburn; and it’s all too easy to blame these symptoms to other diseases or things other than celiac disease.
2. Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
A lot of conditions are pretty hard to diagnose because there are no real tests to pinpoint their existence; rather, what they require is “diagnosis of elimination”, meaning, doctors would have to rule
out everything to zero in on what exactly is going on. IBS or Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a classic example of a disease that’s pretty hard to zero-in on. It’s a chronic condition that causes abdominal pains, bloating, cramping, constipation and diarrhea and is largely affecting the body’s large intestines. According to criteria for diagnostics, a patient should be exhibiting symptoms for at least 6 months and discomfort should be present for at least 3 days in a month during the last three months before it can
be considered as IBS.
Fibromyalgia involves as lot of medically unexplained symptoms—those complaints that apparently does not have any obvious or common physical source. Fibromyalgia is a disease characterized by musculoskeletal pain that’s spread all throughout the body. Often, when doctors can’t determine the root cause of a patient’s pain and fatigue, they often settle on fibromyalgia as the diagnosis.
4. Rheumatoid arthritis
Any unexplained pains and aches may also be a result of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) which is an auto-immune disorder. And unlike the pain from exhibiting osteoarthritis (the “wear and tear” kind that occurs on older people) RA can cause swelling and inflammation at just about any age. Plus, RA can
emulate the symptoms of just about any other disease or health condition, making it harder to diagnose. Doing blood tests can help pin down the presence of an inflammation but making an exact diagnosis of having RA must involve taking into consideration the patient’s past medical history and a doctor’s thorough physical examination of the patient.
5. Multiple sclerosis
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is classified as another auto-immune disease—occurs when the body’s immune system chooses to attack its own nerve cells and places the communication between the brain and the rest of the body in complete disarray. Some of the initial symptoms of MS may include weakness, numbness, and a tingling sensation in the limbs, though those are not always the case. MS can be pretty episodic, the symptoms of the disease waxes and wanes. And depending on the number of lesions found
in the brain, the signs and symptoms may be more severe in other people. A spinal tap or MRI are some of the confirmatory tests for multiple sclerosis.
Lupus is another chronic inflammatory disease best characterized by a “butterfly-shaped” rash on the patient’s cheeks; however, that tell-tale sign may not always be present in all cases of the disease. And for those who did not develop this rash it could be
a long and difficult process of disease identification. Lupus can present itself in various ways—it can affect the joints, kidneys, skin, lungs, and brain and can mimic a bunch of different health issues. There is no single way to get lupus diagnosed accurately, but undergoing a blood and urine test can help. Treatment may also depend on each patient’s symptoms and medications can be adjusted as well as the prognosis improves or deteriorates.