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  • What do you do to manage your RA pain and what can you share with others?

    How do you explain RA symptoms to others?

    What invisible aspects of RA would you like others to know about?

    Share your thoughts and tell us how long did it take you to get an RA diagnosis?

    I've been going to a pain management clinic for several months and I'm really frustrated. Because my pain is constant, significant, generalized, caused by RA/RD, Fibro, Pseudo-gout and degenerated disks/vertebrae and hasn't responded to 28 of the moderate to strong analgesics currently available, the Dr. directly prescribed opioids. After taking pills for one month without relief, I was prescribed Buprenorphine patches. Two months on the lowest dose (5 mcg/hour) didn't produce any effects, so the dose was upped to 7.5 mcg/hour. I'm on the third weekly patch and I haven't noticed any reduction in pain level, so I fear that the dose will be increased again, with the added risks. I haven't had any negative effects either, not even the common bowel problems. I've reseached numerous academic papers and found out that a very small percentage of the population is opioid resistant. This resistance can be due to two facts: a mutation of a certain liver enzime or lacking enough mu opioid receptors in the brain. I believe there is a test to determine the enzime mutation. Is anyone here opioid resistant? I'll be talking to my Dr. about this possibility at the next appointment, but wonder if anyone has experienced this situation and what may be next.

    Hello all My first post on here! I am going travelling to Thailand for 3 months and am taking a 3 month supply of Cimzia which I inject every 2 weeks and needs to be at fridge temperature. Can anyone recommend a really amazing cool bag or give me tips for keeping drugs cool enough? Thailand is so hot and travel can take a while. I don't want to spoil my meds in the first week and have to come home... Any advice much appreciated. Thanks! Abby

    Hello, I am a 51 year-old female recently diagnosed with RA and I work in fitness. I'm a group exercise instructor and a personal trainer. As I'm sure it is for everyone here, this has been very difficult news, especially as I'm concerned about my ability to continue to work in my field. My primary symptoms have been muscle pain after exercise and fatigue. When it started I had done some heavy workouts and thought I was coming down with the flu. I appreciate advice from anyone that also works in the fitness industry or that would like to offer some wisdom. I'm looking forward to reading the posts on this forum and learning more about RA and just connecting with others here. A big thank you to the moderators and those that keep this site going. It is very much appreciated!

    I’ve been receiving treatment for 6 months for RA. My rheumatologist wants to treat it aggressively which is fine by me. I started with Sulfasalazine and after 6 weeks started Methotrexate. After another 10 weeks he said to discontinue the Sulfasalazine in order to start Cimzia. I’ve had 4 doses of Cimzia since then. Meanwhile night sweats which have plagued me which had greatly diminished in frequency and strength when I discontinued the Sulfasalazine have returned. Also, although I feel my wrist, hand, and ankle are fairly well stabilized and under control, my knee continues on its diabolical way. It was better before starting the Cimzia. The rheumatologist has given me permission to go back to Sulfasalazine and I started yesterday. Whew! That’s a long-winded way to my question - has anyone had a similar experience and, if so, what was it? If you had relief from the resumption of the medication, how long did it take? I feel lucky in that I seem pretty tolerant to all these meds so far so I’m hoping the trio work! Thanks in advance for anything you can share.

    We have laying hens and sell heirloom organic produce at the local Farmers' Market weekly or as we are able. Fatigue is my biggest challenge, with pain running a close second. We love our hens and the nourishing whole foods we produce, but we are learning that we have to manage our priorities carefully. Our two horse passed from old age a few years ago and we miss our therapeutic trail rides. Anyone else out there trying to start or hold onto a rural way of living?

    Hello! I am about 3 months into taking oral methotrexate, and really feeling relief (not total, but I can actually wake up in the mornings and the first thing I think ISN"T "there is no way i can do this" anymore- which is huge)!!!... I feel like a truck hit me the day or two after I take my dose.. but I have had a persistantly bloated stomach since starting it.. i feel like i look pregnant.. it's really frustrating.. Is this common?? for it not to just be two days afterwards, but everyday?? Thank you in advance!

    I have a lot of similar symptoms of RA but have no stiffness or swelling, do most normally experience swelling with the pain?

    When I was first diagnosed with RA last year, first thing I thought of was drug after drug the rest of my life. So I joined a gym and changed my diet, started to walk 20 minutes 3 times a week and have yet to take any drugs. The statement” you are what you eat “ is very true. I went to a sort of Mediterranean diet, cut out sugar, meat except grass fed beef in hamburger, any soda, artificial sweetener, any and all processed foods. Except coffee. Gotta have my coffee with organic cream... I basically eat fish, sweet potato, oatmeal and lots of blueberries, raspberries, bananas and for lunch I either have a veggie smoothie, or a veggie burger w/ avocado, tomato and spinach in a pita bread. Dinner eggs w/toast, or fish sweet potato, or tuna fish w/organic mayo...I now have zero inflammation but my fingers will always hurt and are getting crooked. Anyway I also see people never mention God. As a Catholic I get to church 2-3 times a week, pray many rosary’s and put it on before bed and I sleep the night. Sad if anyone feels God does not apply to your life because he is the best medicine, the best doctor there is. And if you have no faith, you may just continue to suffer. This all works for me. I am not young either. Perhaps one day I may need drugs but no thank you.

    I was diagnosed with arthritis three years ago and a year ago I began to lose my voice. My rheumatologist does not believe this is to do with my arthritis whereas the ENT specialist feels it is a flareup in my vocal chords. I have had three shots of steroids into my vocal chords, each at six weeks apart, and I still have not fully recovered my voice. I was curious to learn if anyone else has experienced this? If so, what did you use to treat it?

    I have RA and have been diagnosed with Interstitial cystitis. Is this linked to the RA Anyone else???

    Has anyone tried seeing a holistic doctor to help treat the symptoms of RA? I'm 29 years old and have suffered with RA since I was first diagnosed at 12 months. The RA has also decided to attack my eyes, as I've developed uveitis as well. I have been able to maintain relatively good health until about 7 months ago when I had my first major flare as an adult, and was unlike anything I had experienced. My right hand became extremely swollen and the fatigue had become so severe that I was unable to get out of bed for a few days. After seeing my rheumatologist, who suggested I take 4 separate drugs and thrn proceded to tell me the side effects of each one, I decided to take a different approach and see a holistic doctor. I figured it was worth a shot, as I was willing to try anything that didn't have cancer as a potential side effect. So far, after 5 months of treatment with small doses of a form of potassium, my experience with the holistic doctor has been very positive and effective. Within the past month, her "remedy" has enabled me to get off of my steroidal eye drops that I have been on since I was 4 years old. I've also changed my diet, elimimating all dairy, white bread/flour, sugar, and trans fats. I have a strict vitamim regimen I stick to every day, and have started drinking ginger water instead of my usual fruit juices. I have also tried to include more leafy greens into my diet, as well as other fruits and vegetables, turmeric, and whole grains. It's crazy how I can physically see the swelling increase once I've eaten unheated foods. Its also rewarding and satisfying watching the swelling go down once I stick to the original strict diet. I have noticed a significant change in my energy levels as well as an overall healthier feeling. I can see, now more than ever, how diet directly affects your mental and physical health as well as the level of inflammation. However, the effectiveness of the holistic remedy honestly does not make any sense to me. But at this rate, I am willing to try just about anything to lead as normal of a life as I possibly can with RA. Has anyone else had any promising and/or remotely effective experiences with any forms of alternative medicine?

    I have been experiencing more bouts of Veritgo lately, and wondering how many others may have Vertigo? I read there may be a link between RA and Vertigo. My first attack was 3 days of vomiting and not being able to even open my eyes. As I have more, the severity is less but they last much longer - my current one is going on for a week now. I constantly feel as if I have just gotten off the Merry-Go-Round or Tilt-A-Whirl after too long of a ride. Head movement and car travel makes it worse. I take meclazine 3 times a day and it doesn't seem to help.

    83 just dx few months ago. Never had symptoms before. 6 months after hip surgery..boom.. swelling joint pain all over. I was active healthy before now in much pain. On methotrexate not doing a darn thing. Steroids did help but can’t be on them long term due to my severe osteoporosis. Any helpful suggestions please?

    My name is Melanie, will be 52 in couple months.I was diagnosed a couple years ago. I'm scared to take the meds and scared not to take the meds. I am widow. I live alone, I had a very physical job. I am a press and bindery operator and work in a print shop.. everything heavy about paper..before I was diagnosed I couldn't figure out what was going on. I was beginning to think I was crazy. I would just stay so tired, hurt, just all kind of different stuff going on my eyes bother me, couldn't remember anything, just so much with a wide variety of symptoms I was missing a lot of work I couldn't stay there all day. I just couldn't hold out.. I thought it was just heavy lifting on concrete all day getting older. but I got the diagnosis in one day with ra lupus, sjogren's disease, osteoarthritis. One Doctor MD diagnosed me as mixed connective tissue disease.After that a title wave. I got degenerative Neckand spine disease,with narrowing of the spinal canal, neuropathy, Raynaud's, tendonitis, bursitis possible carpal tunnel, numbness and tingling hands feet. haven't worked in months, I have filed for disability waiting on court date. I tried to do some side jobs for a little cash flow, like 32 hours last week, could hardly get out of bed for days in terrible pain, stiffness, swelling in my hands.I couldn't even our close them. Just need someone who understands this, much anxiety depression.

    Hi all, I know this is a pretty personal question but you would ease my mind greatly. I am on Enbrel and MTX, and I get Enbrel through the AmGen Safety Net Foundation (for those of you who don't know what that is, it covers your medication if you have insurance that doesn't cover the prescription and your income is low enough). However, I just finished my graduate degree and I'm applying for jobs. I will likely get medical coverage through an employer that covers Enbrel but at what cost? I'm so worried it will no longer be something I can afford. It's changed my life, though. As in, without it, I wouldn't be able to work at all. I know it will vary a lot, but if you wouldn't mind sharing your monthly Enbrel cost on employer-covered health insurance, that would be incredible. Basically, I'm torn between taking a job I'd love at ridiculously low pay (and maybe sacrificing Enbrel??) or pushing for something at a much higher level of pay that I'd hate. I'd rather make much less money and do something I love provided that I can still afford my meds. Thank you!!

    My doctor is recommending this infusion for me. I would like to know others' experience with it, especially as to side effects.

    I started Humira a little over 2 months ago. Just wondering how long before I notice the results. Visiting says I should start to notice but doctor says I have a ways to go. I have much pain in my feet which I used to treat with cortisone injections but the doc wants to hold off on these for now. This impedes my usual exercise of walking. Thoughts?

    Diagnosed in Oct 2017, not had much luck with medication. I read on the internet that apparently a dairy free and gluten free diet can help with the symptoms of RA. I was just wondering if anyone has tried the dairy and gluten free diet and if so, did you see any improvements? Is it worth trying?
Viewing 22 topics - 1 through 20 (of 551 total)