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Mon Aug 3, 2015, 05:02 PM

Has anyone dealt with Rhumatoid Arthritis?

I saw my pain management specialist today and she has ordered tests for RA. The pain in my joints has been increasing. It is clearly not related to my back issues. Hopefully not RA but wanted some information. Is it easy to diagnose? Should I seek out a different doctor for this?

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Reply Has anyone dealt with Rhumatoid Arthritis? (Original post)
redstatebluegirl Aug 2015 OP
Warpy Aug 2015 #1
redstatebluegirl Aug 2015 #2
ProfessorGAC Aug 2015 #3
murielm99 Oct 2015 #6
ProfessorGAC Oct 2015 #7
Dalai_1 Nov 2015 #8
murielm99 Nov 2015 #9
Dalai_1 Nov 2015 #10
redstatebluegirl Aug 2015 #4
murielm99 Oct 2015 #5
MuseRider Nov 2015 #11

Response to redstatebluegirl (Original post)

Mon Aug 3, 2015, 06:15 PM

1. There are now a lot of good treatments

so it's no longer a one way ticket to a wheel chair. I got sick 54 years ago, got diagnosed 41 years ago so I've had a long time to cope with it. It's like a lot of chronic illness, it's a pain in the arse and you have to take care of it, but if you do, you can slow the progression down considerably.

You'll be referred to a rheumatologist if you flunk the test because that's where you'll get specialized treatment. Pain management deals with pain issues, not the underlying cause.

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Response to Warpy (Reply #1)

Mon Aug 3, 2015, 08:13 PM

2. Thanks!

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Response to redstatebluegirl (Original post)

Wed Aug 12, 2015, 10:25 AM

3. I Have It

That and MS. I've seen more an up and down thing from it. Nothing progressive.

I will flare up a bit and knee and ankle and the soft tissue just above the right wrist hurts. Generally only last a few days.

I am on a very old, very traditional anti-inflammatory and i'm on half dose except during flares when i double up a day or so. Well know side effects and it's cheap.

I'm not on any of the more specialized and newer drugs because some of those are contraindicated for MS.

So, since this has been working for 5 years, there is no reason to change.

I only see my rheumo doctor once a year.

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Response to ProfessorGAC (Reply #3)

Tue Oct 27, 2015, 12:14 AM

6. I am taking a very low dose of prednisone,

and the doc has prescribed methotrexate. I have not taken it yet. I am afraid to take it. The side effects sound very scary.

Do you know of any alternatives? Why is prednisone not enough?

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Response to murielm99 (Reply #6)

Tue Oct 27, 2015, 07:18 AM

7. I Would Think That Would Be Option One

I'm on nabumatone. It's an NSAID (i know that everyone can't take that because of stomach concerns) but it's an OLD drug, side effects are minimal and the long term effects are really well understood so they know exactly what to screen for over the long haul.

Works for me. I'm not willing to change too much as it has been very stable for years.

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Response to murielm99 (Reply #6)

Thu Nov 12, 2015, 11:36 PM

8. The prednisone reduces inflammation but..

does not get rid of the rheumatoid factor.
I had RA in the '80's.. My rheumatologist shared he could get rid of the pain by RX prednisone but the pain helped protect the joints.. There is a tendency to overuse affected joints when the pain is less... Therefore damaging the joints more.
So I took nothing for pain..

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Response to Dalai_1 (Reply #8)

Fri Nov 13, 2015, 12:39 AM

9. You had it?

Do you not have it any more?

I thought it did not go away.

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Response to murielm99 (Reply #9)

Fri Nov 13, 2015, 11:33 PM

10. Mine actually did...

Lasted from 1982-1986..,saw rheumatologist every week for bloodwork.. Indocin 75 was a new med at the time took that the last couple of years... Had to wear wrist brace .. Could not get my feet in shoes .. Dr recommended New Balance and it was the most comfort I had.
I was living in Fla at the time.. He told me I was in the worst area I could be in.. Eventually moved to NC after a year here blood Work no longer had RA factor...i really got serious about my diet esp salt .. Foods low on the glycemic index as well..Had some residual damage to an ankle and joint in an index finger...

I hope you will find a med that will help ...

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Response to redstatebluegirl (Original post)

Thu Aug 13, 2015, 07:38 PM

4. Thanks!

My tests were inconclusive so the have ordered a different set of blood tests. Something is wrong what I do not know.

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Response to redstatebluegirl (Original post)

Thu Oct 8, 2015, 05:15 AM

5. I was just diagnosed,

so I am as curious as you are.

Any helpful suggestions would be appreciated.

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Response to redstatebluegirl (Original post)

Sat Nov 21, 2015, 10:11 PM

11. I have it

was diagnosed 23 years ago. I am not sure I could help much, I know the disease but for some very lucky reason mine has stayed very mild and controllable. I would think a Rheumatologist would be the way to go. A lot of docs certainly know their stuff but this can be a very disabling disease and you will want the most up to date care you can get.

Mine was atypical, I only had one high sed rate however the symptoms were enough that my rheumatologist just said it was atypical and treated it. He also sent me to Mayo just to see what they thought. They agreed with him. So even if your sed rate does not rise it does not always mean you do not have it.

Good luck.

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