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Referred to Rheumatology

I've had severe joint pain for about 3 weeks. It came on all of a sudden and was crippling for about a week but has since been (very) gradually reducing. (I have had mild joint pain on and off for about a year)

This time it started in my middle pointing finger and that wasn't too bad I thought I had sprained it. One knee quickly followed by the other and that was agony I couldn't really walk or stand up or bend or straighten my legs fully.

Then it seemed every few days the pain would move (always in my knees) but ankles for a few days then wrist then toes. And random rashes appearing.

After a fight with the Doctors and the threat of a complaint I finally got to see a good Doc who spent time with me and they think it's Rheumatoid arthritis and made me a referral after blood tests and gave me stronger pain killers.

Anyway I am just happy that I have some kind of explanation now.

It was really worrying me and getting me down.

I have a few questions if someone wouldn't mind answering

Is the pain moving around usual?

At the worst part of pain in the knees it felt like I had no strength in my knees at all.

Is it normal for the bones to feel like they are.. bruised and tender for a while after the main pain has gone.

  1. , first off, I am sorry you are dealing with these issues and I hope you are able to get a firm diagnosis very soon! Also, kudos to you for not backing down and fighting for your health!


    Testing will really help your doctor narrow down your diagnosis, whether it's RA or some other condition. Also, it can be a bit tricky to give you a full list of potential RA symptoms because there can be such a wide, wide variety of symptoms! It's not unusual for pain to move around in the body. Here's some basic information on RA related joint pain -- https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/symptoms/joints-swelling-tightness-or-stiffness. And here's some information on nerve symptoms and RA. While nerve issues are a little less common, they can occur and they can definitely cause pain -- https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/symptoms/nerve-symptoms.


    Also, RA can cause bone loss and fractures (https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/symptoms/fractures-and-bone-loss ), but I'm not sure if that's what you're talking about.


    I will say that when it comes to describing RA pain, it runs the gamut here. Community members have described pain as burning, crushing, freezing, stabbing, bruising, etc. I know that list of words is pretty daunting, but I wanted to let you know that I bet at least one community member here can relate to the pain tenderness and pain you described. I hope other community members see your post and chime in here. You're definitely not alone in this!


    Please keep us posted on how you are doing and your test results, but only if you feel comfortable doing so!


    Best, Erin, RheumatoidArthritis.net Team Member.

    1. I have PsA, sero-negative RA and AS. My first initial presentation was when I woke up one morning and one leg was locked. By that I mean that I could not bend it at all. Lots of swelling. I had not injured it. The only doctor I had at the time was an endocrinologist for Hashimoto's hypothyroidism. I called him and he arranged for me to see an orthopedic surgeon, thinking it was an injury of sorts. The orth surgeon xrayed in and was smart enough to aspirate fluid before he gave me a corticosteroid shot to bring the swelling down. The aspirate was diagnosed as CPPD. The orth surgeon thought there was more to this, so he sent me to a rheumatologist who suspected PsA. In time that would become the main diagnosis. Also, the pain and inflammation would move to my hands, then my toes, and then my spine, then shoulders, neck, hips...back to my knees. So yes, it moves.


      1. thank you for sharing your story and experience! I'm so sorry to hear about your diagnosis and fight with doctor's who weren't listening to you.


        When I was in the process of being diagnosed with RA, the pain moved around my whole body. It started in my knees, then went to my shoulders, then my fingers, and then my hips. I definitely get the feeling of your bones feeling like they are bruised and tender--it sounds like what you are referring to is a flare, where you have an intense feeling of inflammation and pain and then what is left is almost like a bruise. That's just what it sounds like to me, I'm not a doctor obviously nor am I diagnosing you, just saying your experience sounds like mine.


        I hope you are able to find relief soon! Keep us updated,

        David (RheumatoidArthritis.net Contributor/Moderator)

        1. Great comment! - Reggie, RheumatoidArthritis.net team member

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