How can I tell the difference between my fibromyalgia and an RA flare?

Having fibromyalgia and RA confuses me. How can I know if fibromyalgia is acting up versus a flare of RA? I don’t always have warmth or major swelling over joints. I recently had an ultrasound of my hand but the rheum said it was fibromyalgia more than RA. I thought sure it was the RA. Any ideas?


Community Answers
  • Mary Sophia Hawks moderator
    3 months ago

    Good question betharooski! For myself, my fibromyalgia flares center on my muscles while the RA flares center in my joints. That being said, any flare in the joints will likely irritate the muscles. Most of my flares involve both my fibro and RA, and it’s difficult to determine which disease started it. Inflammation plays a role in both, so treating the inflammation is the best course of action. I’m sorry that you have to go through both. Please realize you are not alone and keep asking questions!

    MS

  • betharooski author
    3 months ago

    Thanks! I should not act so surprised. Even the rheum. did the ultrasound to figure it out. . I have squeezed putty gently to give these fingers a stretch. Take care of yourself!

  • Alesandra Bevilacqua moderator
    3 months ago

    Hi betharooski! Thanks for your question. We can’t give medical advice (for your safety!), but we encourage you to bring up any concerns you have with your doctor or rheumatologist again. Additionally, I wanted to share this article on fibromyalgia and RA with you: https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/medical-conditions-occurring-along-with-ra/fibromyalgia/ I’m hoping other community members can chime in with their experiences as well. I hope this helps! Thanks for being here with us! – Alesandra (RheumatoidArthritis.net Team)

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