Yet another newbie with RA

agslegs Member Posts: 28
edited 9. Aug 2010, 13:39 in Say Hello Archive
Hello there

I was diagnosed with RA in March 2010 so everything is still all new to me. I had previously been fit and healthy and so developing a chronic illness has been a real shock to me and tbh it is still sinking in.

I am taking MTX and etanercept as well as prednisolone and folic acid.
Things had been going well with the meds until 6 weeks ago when I started to feel tired all of the time and then developed pains in my ankles and palpitations.

I have since been diagnosed with an underactive thyroid and anaemia. Quite frankly, I am getting fed up with all of this but it looks as though I am just going to have to get used to hospital visits and adjustments to medications.

That's all for now. I look forward to reading your posts.




  • trisher
    trisher Member Posts: 9,263
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Ags

    A warm welcome from me. Yes, when they tell you you have RA it does give you a jolt.

    This is a very friendly place to be. We try to support one another with advise or tips.
    If you have any questions about RA, now you are a member it would be best to post on the LWA Forum as more people will answer your questions.

    There is also CChat where you can go to see all sorts of posts some funny lighthearted and of course once you get to know us you can post on any ideas you have.

    There is also the cafe where quite a lot of us go to have a cuppa and talk about all sorts of things and have a laugh.

    Well , i hope to see you posting soon.

    Trish xx
  • tillytop
    tillytop Member Posts: 3,460
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Ags – just wanted to join Trish in welcoming you to the forum.
    So sorry about your recent health diagnoses – you really don’t need the thyroid problem and the anaemia as well do you. I really feel for you.

    I too have RA so I understand what a shock the diagnosis can be. It will take time to sink in so be patient with yourself.

    I know from experience that, when you have several health problems and associated meds, it is difficult to know sometimes which one of the health problems is the cause of particular symptoms and/or whether any of the symptoms are in fact drug side effects. From what you say, the Enbrel etc was working well for you until the palpitations and ankle pains started. So if they turn out to be caused by the thyroid problem, then hopefully if that can be treated you will start to feel much better. Not sure what type of anaemia you have but there is a type of anaemia which tends to go hand in hand with RA called “anaemia of chronic disease”. In my case this disappeared once the RA was better controlled and hasn’t returned since so, if this is what you have, you may find the same.

    Only one thing to add Ags - I began to have palpitations and irregular heartbeat whilst taking both Infliximab and Humira (the other 2 anti tnfs – Enbrel being the 3rd type) and this is a recognised side effect. Not sure if this is the case with Enbrel but worth bearing in mind and mentioning to your GP/thyroid specialist if he is not aware of this. I have found that each specialist tends to look only at things within their own area of expertise and anti-tnfs are a mystery to most of them so I have taken to carrying around the patient information leaflet from the anti-tnf drugs to show when I go for an appointment anywhere.

    Please do keep posting – we will help and support you any way we can.

    Love Tilly x
  • valval
    valval Member Posts: 14,911
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    hi ags welcome we love new members even if it does meen you have arther but we are here when you need us val
  • agslegs
    agslegs Member Posts: 28
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi All

    Thank you very much for the warm welcome.

    Tilly - I was interested in what you said about the anemia called anemia of chronic disease. How do you get this diagnosed? At the moment I am worried what is causing my anemia and so it would be good to know that it was definitely caused by RA and not by bleeding elsewhere in the body. Interesting also to hear about your views on the palpitations since when I originally mentioned them to the rheummy nurse she did not seem to think this could be down to the meds at all. It was one of the reasons she tested my thyroid function.

    Anyway I shall go ahead and post on the main forum now. I've enjoyed reading everyone elses' posts so far and I am sure I will find many answers on here.

  • tillytop
    tillytop Member Posts: 3,460
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi again Ags.
    My diagnosis of “anaemia of chronic disease” was made by rheumatologist based on my blood test results. I don’t know whether this is just because the tests showed that I was anaemic at the same time as the RA was behaving very badly, or whether there is something else they look for as well. I have just looked it up for you on the web and it suggests that this type of anaemia does not usually respond to treatment with iron supplements but that it tends to go away of its own accord when the underlying disease is under control.
    In terms of the palpitations, hopefully they are not to do with the Enbrel, but if you are concerned, do ask again. As well as the palpitations (fast, strong and very irregular heartbeats) I had all sorts of other problems whilst taking Humira, all of which were known side effects and all of which the docs said were unlikely to be Humira related. It was a nightmare to get the docs to listen to me but when I did finally stop the Humira – guess what – the majority of symptoms disappeared. Palpitations are back again at the moment but I think that is due to the high dose of steroids I am currently taking.
    Good luck with the Thyroid tests etc and really hope you can get the help you need to start feeling better.
    Love Tilly x
  • barbara12
    barbara12 Member Posts: 21,280
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi ags
    A very warm welcome from me , I dont have RA, but there are a lot of people on here that have, If you post on LWA I am sure someone will be along soon,
    The people on here are so supportive and very friendly, when you are ready come and join us in chit chat.
    Barbara xx