The first sign was itchy skin. My thighs itched. My belly itched. Everything itched. I couldn’t see any rashes or dry skin, but after two months, the sensation got so bad that it distracted me at work.
I finally went to a dermatologist in December 2007. We considered potential explanations. Could it be eczema? Probably not; I showed none of the classic markers of the disorder. At the end of the appointment, I mentioned that I had a lump above my collarbone. It might be getting bigger, I told her, but I wasn’t sure.
She examined the bump and told me it was an enlarged lymph node, a gland that helps the body fight off infections. She advised me to see a general
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