So yesterday on my way into town, I stopped at the pharmacy to explain that I was about to run out of Efexor. Both the usual pharmacists there (identical twins!) know me and my doctor and have all my past prescription details on their computer, so they're usually happy to give me one day's dosage of something in advance of the official bit of paper turning up. However, yesterday there was someone else there that I didn't know, and I panicked and didn't go in. I meant to ring my parents and ask one of them to go round there in the evening, but I forgot. Bah. So I ran out of Efexor. Anyone who's ever been on Efexor/Effexor/venlafaxine will know what the half-life of the drug and corresponding withdrawal effects are like - not pleasant.
Also & unrelatedly, I had a severe attack of nasal congestion starting sometime in the night. I woke up around 8am exhausted & achey with a raging sore throat from breathing through my mouth. Usually, nasal spray & sniffing some Olbas Oil & sleeping propped-up on two pillows is enough to de-congest me, but not this time. So every time I fell asleep I was breathing through my mouth. The effects of several hours of hyperventilation are, in fact, virtually indistinguishable from the effects of Efexor withdrawal: pins & needles in hands and feet & shooting down my arms and legs, numbness in hands, weird electrical effects like insects crawling on the skin, dizziness, and jangling bells if I move my head too quickly. This would all be quite scary if i didn't know why it was happening.
So I feel like ick, and I don't know if this is Yet Another virus or "just" an allergy. I seem to be decidedly feverish, but I'm not sure how much my temperature has to change for me to be certain that I'm fighting an infection rather than "just" having a bad allergic response. The other day, for example, the only thing that was wrong with me was snot, but my temperature was 0.2-0.3 degrees C higher than usual. But I was absolutely fine apart from being snotty. Today I am snotty AND wheezy AND feel cold all the time, and my temperature's up to 37.6 degrees C. I'm assuming I am genuinely ill with something external because of the other symptoms - but I really want to know what kind of temperature increase is associated with what kind of immune system response. This is probably the sort of question that NHS Direct should be able to answer, except it probably deviates far too much from their usual script for them to be able to cope with it :/ I will mark it as a "note to self" to ask my doctor next time I have to go along. I also need to ask whether it's still the case that I'm not allowed to take decongestants - I can't remember which of my meds or illnesses made it inadvisable.