Skip to Accessibility Tools Skip to Content Skip to Footer

Once you open the door, there is no turning back!

My story starts in January of 2013. I had noticed some swelling in my hands, which quickly spread up my arms, then my legs, ankles, and feet. In the course of 12 hours I had put on 20lbs of swelling. It was concerning enough that my family Dr. sent me to the E.D. where they had admitted for heart problems. After testing my heart, I was discharged, because they couldn’t find anything wrong with me. I was still swollen, so back to my family Dr. and they sent me to a rheumatologist. The Dr. was 2 hours late, and when he finally got there, he didn’t look at me, just his computer, and said my blood work was fine, so there was no reason to see him again. At this point I was getting frustrated. Once again I went back to my family Dr. because I was in so much pain, I was in tears, and the Dr. said, there was nothing she could do. I didn’t know what to do. I could not see living the rest of my life in this much pain. I didn’t want to kill myself, but I couldn’t do this!

I went to my parent’s house for the last time, and after telling my mom what I had been going through, she got me in to see my dad’s rheumatologist he had been seeing for his polymyalgia rheumatica. I thought what could hurt! As soon as this new Dr. examined me, he said “well I have to do blood work, but I think you have Rheumatoid Arthritis.” I explained to him I had already saw another rheumy and he said I was fine. The new guy explained to me that you could have it without being ANA positive. So after the blood test and x-rays, it was RA. So this thing had a name, but things will never be the same again!

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.


  • rhhxlp
    3 years ago

    Hello, my first attempt to writing here. But anyway I like to thank everyone for writing about their experience. Why? because It had opened my eyes to things I’ve had never desperated to be related to RA. Like RA “hang over” or dry eyes, carpal tunnel syndrome. Brain fog! I could go on but it has given name’s to symptoms I have and a way to explain to the Dr. Thank you all so much!!

  • Erin Rush moderator
    3 years ago

    I am so glad you took the time to comment, rhhxlp! We’re so glad this site has been helpful for you. That’s what we’re here for. Thanks for sharing with us and for being a part of the community. We’re glad you’re here. Best, Erin, Team Member.

  • Poll