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Your first symptoms

I'm wondering if some of you could post your first symptoms that led to your diagnosis and how you were diagnosed please. I have not seen a doctor yet (but am going to), but have several new symptoms within the last year that concern me. My right big toe joint closest to my foot started hurting badly a year ago. That has worsened and now my left same joint hurts. Several joint in my hands started bothering me in the last 6 months and affect what I can do or at least how long I can do things. My hands get very tired when I wash my hair or face. I wake up with my hands a lower arm numb several nights a week, which also started in the last year. I feel like my symptoms are consistent with RA but don't want to jump to conclusions.

  1. Hi Yellowdog. Those symptoms sound familiar, but aren't limited to just RA. It sounds like it is time to see you GP and see if they will run a full Rheumatology panel on your blood. If not, maybe find a Rheumatologist. Of course, they may start with an ANA blood test.
    Good luck.

    1. Hi Yellowdog. ktinflorida is offering sound advice about seeing your doctor about your symptoms and potentially making arrangements to see a rheumatologist. This article from our editorial team looks at the diagnostic process, including links to specialized information: Please keep us posted on how you are doing. Best, Richard ( Team)

      1. The first symptom I can recall was one of my knees. I got to a point where it hurt to straighten it out. Went to a doctor and he gave me a shot that really helped. He said it was arthritis but I didn't think anything about it. About a year later my fingers started going numb. I was told that it was probably carpal tunnel. The pain would travel from my wrist up to my shoulder. It hurt more at night or right after work. By morning time, I couldn't even close my pinky and ring finger. It kept getting worse. I went to a neurologist who kept doing test and told me it wasn't arthritis. He said if it was then it should be in both hands. I decided to give up after spending lots of money on test that showed nothing. The beginning of this year my husband told me to just try an arthritis doctor. If it wasn't that then we would just leave it alone for a while. As soon as the doctor looked at my hand, he said yep, its arthritis. I could not close my left hand at all and my pinky was swollen like a sausage. He did blood work and my inflammation level was 7x the normal persons. So i say don't give up on being diagnosed correctly and make sure you go to a specialist.

        1. I am a very active 45yr old. I was training for a 5K race and my foot started hurting so bad that I thought I had a stress factor. I went to the doctor and she ordered some blood test and x-rays. No breaks, but I was told I have RA. I am still trying to process it all. I will be seeing the Rheumatologist soon to discuss treatment options.

          1. Hi there klacroix, thanks for sharing with us, and we're glad you've found our community. I'm so sorry to hear about your recent diagnosis, however, I'm glad you have an appointment with a rheumatologist soon and can start treatment. Please know you're welcome here anytime, and we encourage any questions you may have! We're here for you, and we hope you'll continue to reach out. -Casey, Team

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