Patient Comments: Rheumatoid Arthritis - Experience

Please describe your experience with rheumatoid arthritis.

Comment from: Margie, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: August 06

In 2004 I woke up to stabbing pain and unable to move my right shoulder/arm. Things progressed to legs and knees, general malaise, etc. I insisted the cause was a response to being stung by ground bees and having had major oral surgery. No doctor believed me. Both rheumatoid arthritis (RA) factor and Lyme test negative (every time, every year). My general physician (GP) sent me to rheumatologist who then prescribed prednisone and Azulfidine, but no relief. He wanted me to use Dimard or a biologic. I refused due to side effects. I went to a doctor who treats with antibiotics and ibuprofen. That protocol worked for 6 years! Another flare and I went on a brief protocol of methotrexate for a variety of reasons. It worked and I have been symptom free for 5 years until a month ago, when symptoms started after having surgery and invasive dental procedure. There is that infection connection/inflammation and stress response again. My GP wants me to see a rheumatologist who will, of course, want me to go on the major drugs again. I am again searching for a doctor to believe me that these responses are due to current events and will use antibiotics.

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Comment from: Nina, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: October 31

Thinking back I'm sure I've always suffered with some sort of arthritis. As a young child I'd be up most nights with dreadful knee and elbow pains, as young as 8 years old. I remember my parents having to get warm towels to wrap around my joints and the smell of Algipan (deep heat remedy) was a popular aroma in our home. Doctors diagnosed growing pains. I had my daughter at 23 and within weeks of her birth I had intense pain all over my body. Everyday chores of motherhood became so difficult which upset me so much however I persevered and finally saw a rheumatologist who diagnosed RA (rheumatoid arthritis). I worked as a dental nurse part time and was a mother of 2 young children so I kept busy which I truly believe is the key because if I had given up my part time work I would gave probably dwelled on the pain too much. When I was 37 I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia as well causes body aches and a general feeling of flu like symptoms. I am now 47, I've recently had an ankle replacement and will be having a wrist replaced early next year. I'm totally disabled by the RA now but it won't beat me, I go to work in a salon that I run and I do beauty therapy on part time basis day to day depending on my condition. I'm on morphine patches and very strong oral painkillers but otherwise I'd be at home unable to move.

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Comment from: Moag, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: March 28

Worse part of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is the pulmonary fibrosis, this distresses me and is more problematic than the pain from the RA, so debilitating having both things. I thought the RA was bad but this fibrosis really saps me of energy. I feel stuck at present, need to exercise for my RA but get so breathless with the fibrosis. I have never met anyone with both conditions, feel so alone with it all sometimes.

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Comment from: terry, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: March 18

People should look into Remicade treatments for rheumatoid arthritis, I have tried various medications and the best has been the Remicade infusions. It is administered intravenously.

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Comment from: 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: March 04

I am now 72, was diagnosed with RA (rheumatoid arthritis) in 1981 - a few months after I enrolled in a workplace exercise/gym activity. It started in fingers, all over body, toes to neck. I also had psoriasis. After all the usual methotrexate, gold injections, NSAIDS, hands are now very deformed but I still play golf. Prostate was removed in 2007, psoriasis went away. There's no real cure but if caught early some people were cured by major steroid treatment. I am now on 1 piroxicam daily plus blood pressure medication. Keep doing your normal stuff, don't stay on the couch. The medicine is still from the 1950s.

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Comment from: Judie, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: February 18

The pain started in both arms about a month ago and now everything hurts. I am an active person who tends horses and feeds a lot of animals. I ride a lot, and work around on the farm. This rheumatoid arthritis came out of nowhere and I feel like I have the flu or something because I ache all over.

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Patient Comments

Viewers share their comments

Rheumatoid Arthritis - Early Symptoms Question: What were your symptoms at the onset of your rheumatoid arthritis?
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Treatments Question: What treatments have been effective for your rheumatoid arthritis?
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Prognosis Question: What's the prognosis for your rheumatoid arthritis?
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Diet Question: Discuss the diet or other lifestyle changes you've made to relieve symptoms of RA.
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Diagnosis Question: What led to your rheumatoid arthritis diagnosis?

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