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I’ve been a nurse for 16 years & even though I was only diagnosed with RA 2yrs ago. I suffer from OA & have RSDS in my entire Lower Right side from hip to toes & just a little over a year ago 4 titanium screws and plate were put in my neck because of repetitive whiplash starting when I was a child.

I’ve never once compared my level of pain to another person or thought if I could push through the pain so could they, especially if they were younger than I. I’m so appalled at the lack of empathy those in my profession have towards their patients that suffer from daily pain or when you’re referred to a new specialist and they view your list of medications for the 1st time Or how one is viewed when you suffer from so much pain the medicine person needs to ease suffering or so a person is able to function with daily life so they are not bedridden because doing simple daily tasks that we take for granted cause the most excruciating pain. If I have to hear One more doctor or nurse tell me to basically Suck it up,….I’m going to slap someone.

Even just people in general. EVERY PERSON feels the PAIN FROM RA differently or Just PAIN IN GENERAL. EVERY PERSON’S COPING MECHANISM is DIFFERENT. I’ve finally reached the point where I tell those in Healthcare after you’ve walked a mile in my shoes, then we’ll discuss how to Cope with The Daily Challenges of living with RA. I think though that doesn’t break my heart as much as when loved ones are not standing & supportive. I had a former boyfriend of 5 yrs whom I was with when I was diagnosed with RA, it will be a long time before I forget him saying “My body aches every morning, I get up and do all I need to everyday”. My response, ” I Pray for the mornings when I wake and I only ache”. I Pray with time People will become more.

Compassionate to those of US that live with RA. I do believe however it is going to be up to “US” to Educate the Ignorant and to point them towards material that Explains what it’s !ike to suffer and live with RA….♥

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.


  • Damian
    5 years ago

    Good on ya Lisa

    I dream of the day I can visit a Rheumatologist who has severe RA! I’m off this morning to have my 8 hr infusion of Rituximab (Rituxan). I have the infusion in the Chemotherapy ward, with 20-50 cancer patients sitting around me,’woo who’:)

    Have a great day to all


  • Lisa author
    5 years ago

    I’m going to be returning to work soon as well as furthering my education in the healthcare profession. I Pledge to be the Voice/Advocate of those who SUFFER and Who’s complaints fall on deaf ears. It’s time that those in The Medical Field start listening to their Patients AGAIN. This can make the Difference between an Individual leading a Healthy Productive and Rewarding Life or Being Disabled and Severely Depressed and at home cut off from the world because of debilitating pain

  • Marcia Parker
    5 years ago

    Lisa, Thank you for your story. Well put how some professionals dismiss RA pain. How many times have I wanted to say to my doctor to spend a day in my shoes. Maybe one of these days I will. Thanks again. Marcia

  • Andrew Lumpe, PhD moderator
    5 years ago

    Lisa, I appreciate your insight from a medical insider’s perspective. I’ve had some health care professionals who are very compassionate and understanding. And others who are dismissive of symptoms and pain. Just recently, a pain specialist none the less, was very dismissive of pain I’ve had in my neck from two herniated discs and bone spurs. I’d like this person to live in my shoes just for one day so they would be more understanding! Thanks for sharing. Andrew

  • Mariah Z. Leach moderator
    5 years ago

    Hi Lisa – Thank you so much for taking the time to share your story. I think it is really important to recognize that we all feel (and deal with) our RA pain differently. I always hope that, even though we suffer differently, we can be understanding and supportive of each other. I’m glad you found our website where hopefully we can do just that!

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