Patient Comments: Osteoarthritis - Symptoms

The symptoms of osteoarthritis can vary greatly from patient to patient. What were your symptoms at the onset of your disease?

Comment from: LoriZak1, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: October 28

I was diagnosed on June 1, 2013 with osteoarthritis of the spine and my doctor said that I had a back of a 53 year old woman (I am 43 years old). My grandma had osteoarthritis and she was in pain all the time; she also had deformed fingers and toes on her left side the same side as me. I have chronic pain all the time, particularly in the afternoon starting at 3pm and on. I have been on a high dosage of tramadol and it does work. I really do think I have had this disease since my teens. I work full time, 8 hours a day, 5 days a week and with everything being so expensive it's hard to even take a day off, but I find that if I work early in the morning from 6:30AM to 2:30PM I am fine and not dragging my left leg as much. The weather has changed here and my osteoarthritis has gotten worse, so I can only imagine what it will be like in winter, but water therapy works very well!

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Comment from: Vinny152, 75 or over Female (Patient) Published: September 04

In 2005, my symptoms of osteoarthritis started with pain and stiffness of the knees, primarily over the next two years. The pain in my joints disappeared with the help of pain medication and salves, but the stiffness became worse, necessitating the use of a cane for walking. Now the joints in both hands are swollen and disfigured, but I have no pain in these deformed joints. Some weight reduction did not help the symptoms. Currently, sitting for more than two hours will cause severe stiffness. I try to maintain a moderate exercise program to reduce the stiffness, and I have moved to a warmer climate.

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Comment from: Caberfay, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: September 04

I have been diagnosed with osteoarthritis, but it is not in the usual sites that other people seem to suffer in. Mine is in my neck and shoulders. Initially, my pain was in my upper arms, in the muscles of my upper arms. When I went to the doctor, he immediately sent me for an X-ray as he suspected lung cancer, but my lungs were clear. The next day, I was diagnosed with osteoarthritis. I was prescribed Tramacet for six months and when I tried to reduce the intake of the pills, I was very surprised to find I was going through withdrawal symptoms. Since then, it is like my nervous system has been affected, and I have attacks of some kind of tension in my arms and legs and must shake them vigorously to settle them. This even wakes me up at night, with sweating and panic. I wonder if I have built up an aversion to acetaminophen, which is in Tramacet.

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Comment from: genea_80, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: August 22

I first noticed a problem about 5 months ago while lying on a pullout bed. I'd been staying at a relative's home helping her recover from knee surgery, when I noticed a dull ache in my right hip. I ignored it for 2 months before I went to the doctor. By then the pain went from only slightly uncomfortable, to almost unbearable. My doctor ordered x-rays, and he determined that I had secondary degenerative osteoarthritis in my right hip. He explained that my body had grown a small "patch" to correct an injury that I'd sustained as a teenager. When he asked if I played tennis, and I told him that I had and suffered a bad fall he told me that the injury likely surfaced from that incident. At 28, I'm finding myself stiff in the mornings and achy in the movie theater or on long bus rides. The pain is not debilitating, and I am working to keep the disease at bay. I have also noticed in the last month that my right knee (which was also injured in the same fall during the tennis match) is also causing me pain. To all who read this: don't ignore your body. If you have pain, please see a doctor. I waited just two short months, and now I regret it.

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Comment from: Cindy, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 19

I have been dealing with the pain of osteoarthritis for three years now. I am a 52-year-old female and have had to adjust my exercise activities to low impact, more repetitions and less weight. It started in my neck then moved to my knees and hips. Now, it is in my right hand. (I am right handed and work at a computer all day). My middle finger is swollen at the knuckle to twice its size and now my right ring finger is too. My doctor said there is no cure for osteoarthritis, so what do I do? Let it keep getting worse until I can't use my right hand at all? Sometimes I take Flexeril and Ibuprofen. They take the edge off, but that is about it. I also go to a chiropractor to get some relief. There are times when one knee will lock up when I am kneeling and working in my flower bed and I have to try to move it around so I can get up. The pain is excruciating.

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Published: July 22

My neck was hurting, and I thought it would go away eventually. After three months, I finally went to the doctor who thought it might be carpel tunnel syndrome, but after the spinal x-ray said it was osteoarthritis. I'm in constant pain, and the celebrex and muscle relaxers are gone. I'm 43 and too young to be dealing with arthritis.

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Osteoarthritis - Treatments Question: What was the treatment for your osteoarthritis?
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Osteoarthritis - Early Intervention Question: Do you have early symptoms of osteoarthritis? What steps are you taking for early intervention?

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