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Newly Diagnosed and Unprepared

I was recently diagnosed with RA in March and I when I searched for the symptoms I was experiencing I always disregarded the Rheumatory diagnosis even though everything kept pointing directly at it. After an appointment with my primary doctor which indicated he was going to run some bloodwork for RA, my gut was in knots, as it was that moment I knew I had RA.
I thought I was prepared for my first RA appointment but it was actually much harder to hear the confirmation than I had ever anticipated. Nobody in my family has RA and nobody I know has this. I feel like a lost child in a BIG world at times and I have never cried so much from the peer emotions of fear. The medication all scares me with the side affects. When I go back and recall my symptoms, I believe I have had this for about 4-5 years before ever diagnosed.
I think I was living on Motrin and alleve like daily viatamins. I am hopeful for all the treatments available today. As a friend recently mentioned, the treatments today are so great for people with RA and if ever a time to have this, now is a good time. Yes, at first I thought she was nuts, however, compared to 10-15 years ago there are so many different courses of successful treatment available today. While I clearly understand this will not go away, I will remain hopeful for myself and everybody else with RA that we find the treatments that work for us individually. I am struggling on the meds and recently had an allergic reaction to one, these times are frustrating but I will give my all to try and help my body get control of this.

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.


  • Richard Faust moderator
    2 years ago

    Thanks for writing ccrowder123, but sorry to hear about the diagnosis. Dealing with a new diagnosis can certainly be difficult and with a chronic condition like RA the emotional can often take a back seat to the physical. This article from our editorial team takes a look at these emotional aspects of the diagnosis:

    You and your friend are absolutely correct that RA treatment has come a long way. This article from one of our contributors takes a look at the evolution of treatments:

    Thought you might be interested in this overview of various RA treatments, with links to more specifics. It could be helpful as a resource as you and your medical team discuss options.

    Please know that you are always welcome here for information and support. Keep us posted on how you are doing. Best, Richard ( Team)

  • Richard Faust moderator
    2 years ago

    Thanks for writing TC3120. Methotrexate is often a front-line treatment for RA. You may already have much of this information, but here is an article from our editorial team giving an overview of methotrexate:

    In addition, this new article from one of our contributors looks at resent research on methotrexate and asks if it is actually under utilized:

    Keep us posted on how the treatment goes and let us know if you have any questions we may be able to help with. Best, Richard ( Team)

  • TC3120
    2 years ago

    Hi ccrowder123,

    I know how you feel. I was also just diagnosed a couple weeks ago with early RA and as you terrified. I have started the methotrexate and so far so good. I know it’s nerve wracking. Did your Dr tell you if you had any damage or inflammation yet or no?
    Hang in there! What part of the country do you live in?

  • ccrowder123 author
    2 years ago

    Hi TC3120!
    I have been on the methotrexate for about 5 weeks. I am glad the methotrexate is working for you. My Dr. Reduced my plaquenil dose in half. It Has been a rough few weeks off and on. Some days I feel good and then just out of nowhere I feel like I was at the gym for 10 hours and hurt all over. I tend to have inflammation In my wrists fingers and feet the most. I live in the inland empire in sunny CA. I suck up my situations and trot on about my day.

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