Newbie to the RA Group

For years I have suffered with pain and discomfort. Many years ago, I contracted an illness which was diagnosed as “Sweet’s Syndrome”. It took over a month to reach a diagnosis after being told by a few doctor’s that it was arthritis or fibromyalgia. Cause was never determined but it was extremely painful and a massive dose of Predisone healed me. However, I was never the same and would continue to experience pain for years afterwards. I was treated for Sciatica, Bursitis, Arthritis, Inflammation, Ankylosing Spondylitis. I have seen various doctors & pain centers. I’ve had XRays, MRI’s, been given pills, physical therapy and it seems like each place I went I would get a different diagnosis or treatment. Meanwhile, I endured terrific pain but tried to keep putting one foot in front of the other and kept going. Working and doing daily chores was sometimes unbearable and basically people didn’t understand my issues. Then, I got very ill and discovered I now have a pancreas that quit working and am insulin dependent. I thought, maybe this has been a contributing factor to my problem. I guess not, because 2 years ago, I ended up in the hospital due to severe pain and high blood count of some type. I was checked for cancer, lupus and a number of ailments until it was decided I had a severe case of PMR. Once again, Prednisone to the rescue for almost a year. After more tests, it is a definite diagnosis of RA. I’m taking Plaquenil right now and it seems to help but I am concerned about the side effects. I find I am very fatigued and have little drive to do much of anything. So, I thought I would seek out a support group to learn more about this ailment and how to cope. Thanks for listening. JS

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