New to all this

Hi my name is Dianne and I live in Australia. I go back to my rheumatologist next week to confirm if I have RA and a couple of other things too and discuss what will be happening. So far all my blood tests, x rays and ultra sounds have showed that I have RA. My body is sore from head to toe. I have had unknowingly had symptoms for years but over the last couple of years everything that has been wrong with me has been blamed onto stress and grief. Finally two Doctors at our clinic listened to what I have said and looked into everything further. Part of me is happy that I know I am not going crazy and the other part is thinking #@&*&* what am I in for. I saw the Doctor the other day because I am sensitive to some pain relief medications which means I cannot take them while I am at work. They have worked out pain relief for me for at work and a different routine for when I am at home and night time. They did not want to do anything that would cause a delay in any treatment the rheumatologist may want to start. The Doctors did put me on 10mg a day of prednisolone. It has helped and I can at least wear shoes at work without crying.
Your stories have been a great help as I did not realise that a lot of my symptoms were related but also your stories can be scary as they show what the future may hold. One very confused person here.

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

View Comments (8)
  • Ann B Wall
    4 years ago

    Dear Dianne, happy New year and I hope it’s a year of healing for you. I remember being overwhelmed by the idea I had a chronic illness- Diagnosed June 2011. I had trouble getting in and out of clothes, walking and extreme fatigue. ” Like walking through quicksand . The good news is today i’m better…I’m on methotrexate and remicade .I still struggle with some fatigue but not like it was. I am helped by just letting some things go, I eat a mostly vegan diet and have quit smoking 3 yrs ago. I believe in an anti inflammatory diet. Please give yourself extra love and rest… in the beginning i could sleep 6 hours like a child wke up and go back to sleep after a shower and eating. You will get better. Everything you need will come to You. prayers and hugs to you young woman… i’m 58 yrs old.

  • Virginia Carner
    4 years ago

    I think my RA started in my feet…feelt like I was walking on pointed rocks…had screws put in both feet and now my feet and shoulders are the only places that I don’t have too much pain…I am not being treated with anything…as a nurse, I was too afraid of catching something worse while I was working…now I have no insurance…no job…wish I had got scews in my fingers, wrists, hips, ankles, knees, back and neck…although I don’t think I would be able to move and may need oiling…oh well 🙂 at least my feet don’t hurt…maybe I am supposed to be on here to help in any way that I can now…I’m beginning to wonder about the personalities of RA people…do you consider yourself sensative? I have been sensative, even as a child…just curious because of the stress/autoimmune link…I’m even severely sensative to the weather….Be well

  • Dianne Brooker author
    4 years ago

    Don’t know what is worse RA or the medication. Had my 4th dose of methotrexate and it is not getting any easier. It wipes me out for 2 to 3 days. Makes it difficult to do anything and I struggle to get through work. Hurry up January the 8th that is when I see the rheumatologist again.

  • Ann
    4 years ago

    Hi Dianne. I am from Australia too – regional Vic. Where are you? I was diagnosed last week! I’m in my 50’s. I had gradual onset of illness, symetrical joint pain and extra fatigue in August (already had chronic fatigue after having glandular fever 2 yrs ago). Went to GP who tried to diagnose Fibromyalgia. I had trouble getting through to her that the pain was in my joints, not elsewhere. My blood tests are negative, which doesn’t help. I checked online about all this and believed I have a form of inflammatory arthritis, so waited for about 12 weeks (the time it takes for it be classed as chronic) to see another GP who referred me to a Rhuematologist. Bloods still negative, but have immediate Dx of Infammatory arthritis, probably RA or psoriatic. She told me to tell people it’s RA as otherwise noone will understand and treatments are the same in any case. Have started on sulfasalazine, gradual increase of dose over 4 weeks. Pain for me is not too bad, just constant. I have worse trouble with malaise and fatigue, and response to stress. I got a really nasty upper chest infection after a recent stress episode, which has resulted in worsening RA symptoms. All of this has impacted on being able to work for me. Like you and a lot of others, I think I’ve had this off and on for years in some form or another, just not all at once. Anyway, it is a scarey journey, but we aren’t alone as you say. And best to be Dxed and get the treatment than having to struggle with Dr’s to have your illness recognised.

  • Ann B Wall
    4 years ago

    hi , ann too My rheumatologists tells me that 20% of patients with RA have no usual markers. I have received infusions with a patient severe RA normal sed rate no RF ,no CCP no CRP but with a dextra ra test elevated interleukins etc. the rheumatologists was treating her for ra without the markers because the joint changes where there for 9 yrs.Have faith hugs to you also

  • Dianne Brooker author
    4 years ago

    Thank you Ann, I live in Benalla. I was officially diagnosed with Ra today and I am starting on Methotrexate tonight and it will be slowly increased over time. I have been on prednisolone for two weeks now and will be staying on it for awhile. The good news is my X-rays show that it has not damaged my bones. There is just the normal wear and tear, even though that is all over my body. So now just hope the meds work and I can get back to a life with a bit more comfort. Wearing shoes without pain would be nice.

  • Mariah Z. Leach moderator
    4 years ago

    Hi Dianne ~ I am sorry to hear that you are going through a difficult time – the path to diagnosis can be long and frustrating and I hope that you get some answers when you go back to your rheumatologist. Getting a diagnosis can be difficult and life-changing, but at least then you know what you’re up against! And I understand how reading stories can be both helpful and overwhelming – the important thing to remember is that everyone’s RA is different so though you may be able to relate to what others are saying there is no guarantee that your story will be similar. I am glad you have found our community! Please hang in there and remember that we are here to support you!

  • Dianne Brooker author
    4 years ago

    Thank you Mariah, I am more positive today after seeing my Rheumatologist and determined to get on with life. My local G.P has been fantastic too. I just need to work out something to help me with wearing shoes, some type of padding or something as I am on my feet all the time.

  • Poll