Autoimmune Disease Support Group

Our  Mascots are Marlie and Wilson!  

June, 2018

New members:  3

Total in attendance:  13

Donations collected:  $72

Approx. Monthly Expenditures:  $100  includes running the website, copies, pens, nametags, brochures etc

Operating in deficit for this month -$28


Before I go into the meeting, I need to share some sad news:  The regular members received an email but I just want to make sure the inactive members can get this info as well... Our beloved Anne has passed away.  She was a long time member of our Group from about 5 or 6 years!... until about a year ago when she became too ill.  She was smart and sassy, full of knowledge and positivity. Anne, you will forever be remembered. May you rest in peace. xo

Ice Breaker:  Game:  SYMPTOM CHECKER  We went around the room and each person added to the list one symptom that they are dealing with.  We then did a hand-count for each symptom to show how many people in the room share the same experience of dealing with that particular symptom.  The first 13 symptoms on the left of the photo here are the main 13 we started with.  The symptoms on the right are listed according to 1st place, second place etc. This exercise allowed us all to see who in the room literally “shares our pain” and that we are all truly not alone in this experience!

Once the ice breaker was done, we went on to Open Forum discussion.  Here is what we talked about:

One member is dealing with anxiety. She is starting therapy with a professional and is considering whether or not to try medication. She wonders if any group members have tried any holistic ways or supplements that they think were useful in lowering anxiety.

               One member shares that she thought 5Htp helped her for quite a while, but found she was needing more and more of it.  She now is using a prescribed medication.

               One member reminds us that we should NOT assume that supplements don’t have side effects!  And that they are not regulated by the FDA either, so please remember to research wisely (never get your info from a website that is trying to sell you their product.  Get the info from a .gov website or WebMD or one of the big Medical Universities like Hopkins.  If they are trying to sell you something, the info they give you will downplay any negatives and over emphasize the benefits to be gained.

One member is looking to find a doctor that is a Homeopath or a Naturopath

One member reminds us not to leave out our pharmacist even when looking for supplements because he is trained to know about interactions between medications and supplements.  The pharmacist can tell you also if a supplement will increase or decrease another medication you are taking.

One member mentions that her pharmacist wouldn’t fill an antibiotic until he explained that her treatment medication would have to be stopped for the amount of time taking the antibiotic for fear that the treatment medication could build up to toxic levels in her blood due to the antibiotic!

One member shares that there is a great Homeopathic Pharmacy called Valley Pharmacy in Pluckamin/Bedminsster

One member shares he recently had a whole battery of tests run, including 22 viles of blood! Nothing new was found.

One member is restarting IV Infusions after he was unable to afford the $1,000 co-pay.  He is looking forward to feeling better once he is back into the treatment “full swing”.

One member likes their doctor, Dr. Marc Condren, located in Somerset. He has an approach that includes Nutritional, Functional and Complementary. This is something many of our members are searching for!  EXCEPT that he does not deal with insurance. You have to pay cash out of pocket and then submit yourself to get reimbursed. Here is the website if you want more info:

Another member likes Dr. Jass, located in Ewing, NJ, for more info click here:

One member shares how interesting they found the book by Deepak Chopra “Brain Mind Body Connection”  (this website offers the book and DVD)

One member shares that C-Reactive Protein is an inflammation marker blood test. Check out

One member shares that there are Counselor’s out there that actually take Medicare as payment! So if you are on Medicare and would like to seek mental health therapy, there is help out there! Try Psychology Today's search engine:

One member shares a really uplifting quote with us:  “a shared sorrow is half a sorrow.  A shared joy is two times the joy!” I love this!!!

One member shares that “sometimes when their body is forcing them to rest, they eventually feel a burst of energy and that the burst of energy can feel like anxiety when that energy needs to be released.”

One member notes that procrastination can increase the level of anxiety. For a little more on this topic:

One member shares that immunotherapy actually cured a cancer patient. For more on this super interesting topic:

One member shares that their doctor told them that the FDA will be putting out a new medication in approximately 6 months that is said to reverse Sjogren’s disease!!!  How great would that be??? If you can find an article on this please pass it on to me, I've spent quite a bit of time looking!!! 

One member brought a handout to pass out from the NJ Dept of Health on the medical marijuana program.


NEXT MEETING:  Saturday, July 14th, 2018

Ice Breaker Will Be:  “What are the top 3 traits you look for in a friend?”