Pemphi-What?

pemphigus slide
You don’t want to see what this thing looks like. I’ve viewed the photos, including the ones of me. Here’s a slide instead. You’re welcome.

Pemphigus Vulgaris – or Common Pemphigus (pem-fi-gus) – is a rare auto-immune skin disease. It breaks  skin tissue down into  individual layers and then raises painful blisters between the layers. I have recently been diagnosed with it, following the second of two biopsies. Pemphigus Vulgaris typically starts in the mouth, since it loves mucous membranes. It can also make itself at home in other places with similar, mucous tissue. And wouldn’t you know it – that’s just what it did! Lucky me.

Auto-immune diseases are the result of the body’s immune system attacking what it thinks are outside invaders. Since there isn’t an invader, your body eats you up instead. Standard treatments include high doses of corticosteroids and other immunosuppressant drugs. There’s no “cure,” so the goal is to get the body to go into remission. I can live with that.