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My life with Rheumatoid Arthritis

My life with Rheumatoid Arthritis begin rather suddenly . In 2009 I began having knee pain and some swelling, but it would come and go. Then one day I woke up feeling awful , it felt like every joint in my body was swollen, hot and in pain. I was so stiff and sore that I had trouble getting out of bed. I got into to see my family doctor, he immediately indicated he was pretty sure it was RA, and after some blood test he determined it was a definitive diagnosis.

I was refereed to a Rheumatologist who did more blood work that confirmed the RA, and she also told me that I not only tested positive for the RF factor, but the A-CPA, Which indicated an aggressive form of RA, with the least favorable outcome. The rheumatologist found I had some liver disease and lung disease, which delayed any aggressive treatment. I have been on many biologics and finally have found a combination of drugs that are helping.  My life has been turned upside down and I struggle daily to maintain relationships, fulfill my job responsibilities and take care of my home, and pay my medical bills.

The most difficult part of this disease is the lack of understanding by others; Family, Coworkers and friends grow tired of hearing complaints and having to listen to the latest medical malady that has shown up. I’ve learned to keep most things it myself except a few family members and friends.

I feel very lucky that I have good doctors and a job with good health insurance and everyday I get up and give thanks for the positive things in my life and ask for strength for to deal with the areas of struggle in my life.

I can do this!

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

Comments

  • Patricia Darstein
    5 years ago

    I just wondered or wanted to take a pole of what people were taking to treat their RA. I have not found any success with treatment other than using Prednisone (and Prednisone is resulting in TERRIBLE side effects)

  • Marilyn Swallow author
    5 years ago

    Hi, I take arava and Rituxan and plaqinel.

  • Lisa Butcher
    5 years ago

    It’s nice to know I’m not alone! I will try to remember this the next time I am suffering, and no one around me understands!

  • Marilyn Swallow author
    5 years ago

    Lisa, it is good to know we are not alone:)

  • Marcia Parker
    5 years ago

    Marilyn, Thank you for sharing your story. I just recently shared mine. Friends often ask how I’m feeling and most times I say fine. It’ hard for them to understand what we struggle with daily. I also have a close friend an a few family members who do understand. I recently changed Rheumatologist and am very happy with his care. Finding the right combo of meds is such a balancing act. But when they do it’s wonderful. I’m not quite there yet but am hopeful. Thanks for sharing.

  • Marilyn Swallow author
    5 years ago

    Thank you!

  • Mariah Z. Leach moderator
    5 years ago

    Hi Marilyn – Thank you so much for taking the time to share your story! I’m so glad to hear that you have finally found a combination of medications that are helping you. I understand exactly what you mean about an RA diagnosis turning your life upside-down, and the lack of understanding from others does make this even more difficult. Remember that we are here if you ever need someone to listen who understands what you are going through! Hang in there!

  • Marilyn Swallow author
    5 years ago

    Thank you!

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