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Flare ups

What are your flare up like?

I have what I think are micro-flares. I'll get sudden, sharp, shooting pain in my fingers or toes.

I also get aching major joints: hips, knees, and ankles. Is that a flare up too?

Knowing how individualized our symptons can be, what are yours?

  1. Scott, I've struggle with understanding the exact nature of flares. There even seems to be no clear definition in the scientific literature. For me the symptoms can wax and wane. I like your characterization that if can be micro or macro. I think they can also be short term and long term. If you go beyond 3-6 months, then you know that your treatment is not working.

    You can read more about flares at https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/what-is-ra/ra-flare/

    1. Hi Andrew,
      I am having a flare right now. Started a month ago and I can tell you, I have no trouble telling when I have a flare. It starts a few days before with major fatigue and wanting to sleep all the time. Then one or two joints will start to throb and within an hour or two, there is swelling, redness and throbbing, indescribable burning agony.

      Today it is my right knee and also the Cricoarytenoid joint in my throat. Can barely walk,can't swallow and can hardly talk. Waiting for the Dr's surgery to open so that I can get an appt. today. That is how a flare is for me.

      1. Thanks for sharing your experiences about flares Barbara. Hope you get some relief soon.

        1. Thank you Andrew,
          Yes, once more with the help of large doses of cortisone(oral) swelling and pain have eased off. Joints still a little touchy and tender, but functioning normally again- until next time. The problem with needing to take large doses of cortisone all the time is the way it strips calcium from your bones. I'm on Fosamax Plus but each time I have a bone scan it is a little worse. A trade off between becoming crippled if I don't take the cortisone and a fracture if I do. Win some, lose some I guess.
          Cheers,
          Barb

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