How did you react when you were first diagnosed?


Community Answers
  • Jo J
    6 months ago

    Relief to start treatment, I actually swallowed my first dose of steroid with joy. I also felt vindication and anger at my first Rheum. I’d been with her a year and couldn’t convince her I was accurately reporting my symptoms. I knew that delay of a year might affect my disease course. Next, I felt hopeful. My medication road hasn’t been as straight as I’d like, but being able to partner with a good Rheum has me moving the right way.

  • Patricia
    9 months ago

    I was so relieved to know why I was in such pain that I could hardly walk!! And super relieved that my primary care dr. has suspected RA & sent me to an excellent specialist. It was great to finally have someone to help, and he has helped a lot, prescribing the right meds, working to get dosage right, etc.

  • QTPie
    8 months ago

    I was very relieved that I finally had an answer for joint pain, fevers and inflammation. I then was careful to fully explain the disease to my extended family once i completely understood it myself. But my husband knew right away as he was there with me. What helped tremendously was 60 second guide to rheumatoid arthritis by ra guy..simplified it in a cute way

  • 2mra
    9 months ago

    I was also happy to have a diagnosis but it didn’t mean much to me. I’d get some pills to take and I’d feel better. Like others, I figured it was just an older persons’ disease that I had heard about. That you get a pain in a knee, one week, maybe another pain in your hand 3 weeks later, etc. No biggie. Wrong! I was naive at 24. We only had a few medical books, no library closeby and no computer in the early ’80’s. The books were basic and didn’t say much about RA/RD. Plus, I had a new baby, my Hubby, Type 1 Diabetes to look after and lots of work to do. Who had time?

  • Monica Y. Sengupta moderator
    9 months ago

    I was relieved.

    I experienced symptoms long before my diagnosis, while I was in college. I remember thinking “why do my knees hurt so much climbing the stairs to my dorm room??” or “why can’t I get across campus as easily anymore??” I thought I was bored and my major and pre-vet track made me tired. Looking back on it, at 20 years old, I should not have felt any pain at all!

    I was finally diagnosed when I couldn’t get out of bed in July. I was in so much pain I couldn’t move.

    I was relieved. I was never a hypochondriac but I began to wonder if these little things, like pain in my knees, or difficulty turning the key in my lock were in my head because, at the time, I was kind of bored with my major and not enjoying school.

  • Larry Sawyer
    9 months ago

    Relieved, I had been fighting it since 1979, and since I “only had the pain, ulcerative colitis and Pancreatitis” and none of the outward systems affecting my joints, no one in the medical community new what to do. We lived 50 miles from Mayo and 4 fruitless trips there yielded no cigar. My son lives in Greece and in the early part of 2000, came down with joint pain and they immediately put him on Enbrel, He called me, my medical focus up to than was UC. I went to an arthritis clinic and they said yup. for the first time I had a name. and a possible (cure). Still working on the cure part.
    Larry

  • Eebtool
    9 months ago

    At first I was a bit confused about what was happening to me. Between the pain, loss of movement and stress of the unknown future I fired up the computer and did probably the worst thing a person could do, Google RA.
    For the first several months of getting the meds to the right recipe I started putting on weight and doing almost nothing other than making it through the day at the office.
    After that things just got worse. You could say depression mixed with a double brandy cocktail to to help make the after work stress less sharp.
    One day about 3 years after the news of my future life, my daughter introduced me to running. I have been running for 5 years now, slowly, but stil moving forward.

  • Tamara Haag moderator
    9 months ago

    When I was diagnosed at the age of 22, the predominant feeling I had was fear. I was afraid of how having an uncurable disease would impact the rest of my life. I was afraid it would impact my future career, my ability to have children, my mobility, and even worried about my appearance. This also led to some mild depression, as I was a senior in college and I had to postpone my final semester and graduation until my medical treatment plan kicked in.

    That was almost 18 years ago, and fortunately I have been able to do everything I really wanted to do (complete a master’s degree, have a career, and have children), however this has often been on a different time table than it would have been without a chronic health condition. RA/RD has slowed me down at times, but it hasn’t stopped me.

  • Nan Hart
    9 months ago

    Frankly there were mixed emotions…at first, because of how long it took to diagnose, I was relieved that I finally knew what was going on. That said, as I looked into what RA was, the specific details, prognosis, treatments, etc. I was scared and sad all at once. I think I knew, even then, that my life had changed forever. What I was going to do about that, remained to be seen…

  • Lauren Tucker moderator
    9 months ago

    Nan, thanks for sharing with us! I know you aren’t alone in journey to a long diagnosis- we are always glad when you share your perspective and journey with us. Gentle Hugs, Lauren (RheumatoidArthritis.net Team)

  • Wren moderator
    9 months ago

    I was surprised because at the time, I thought only old folks got arthritis, and I was only 31. I was glad to know what was causing all my joint pain, though. My doctor, an internist, didn’t tell me much about RA. If I’d known then what I know now, I’d have been a lot more worried!

  • Lauren Tucker moderator
    9 months ago

    Thanks Wren for sharing your diagnosis with us! We are glad to have you share your RA journey with us! Gentle Hugs, Lauren (RheuamtoidArthritis.net Team)

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