lag1979 Member Posts: 2
Hi all,
I have been reading your posts with great interest. I am 31 years old and last winter, began to experience some odd symptoms of lots of swelling and discomfort in my index finger on my left hand. It went away after about a week but since then it has been uncomfortable, feels 'tight' when I bend it and looks slightly swollen. Moving on to this year.. I noticed three weeks ago that I developed a small pea sized lump on my palm at the knuckle area, I thought it was a ganglion, it doesnt move and hasnt got any bigger, I left it alone but then three days ago another 'lump' has developed underneath my ring finger, this one is painful and feels like it has got a bit bigger. Over the last week I have been experiencing discomfort in my thumb and wrist - all on the same hand, my ankles hurt in the mornings ( I am slightly overweight) and I suffer with lower back pain though not all the time! I also noticed a bump at the top of my left index finger - it is mishapen for want of a better word, so reluctantly went to the GP today. I sat down and he said 'Those ae cysts we'll leave those' and to my swollen bumpy finger - 'thats arthritis that is, yeah, well its a bit early but.....' I left the office feeling quite upset, how does he know its arthritis, no tests, no analgesia, no refferal, at the age of 31 I just have to accept that I have arthritis based on a 2 minute consultation. I have been left feeling really quite upset, I dont know whether I should believe what he says, go back to a different GP or what to do. I wanted to know if the lumps on my palms were, in fact, arthritic. Can anyone help?
Thanks for reading if you got this far!


  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Of course you are upset. What an insensitive clod of a doctor.

    Arthritis can strike at any age, and can affect any joint in its early stages. There are different forms of arthritis, but ifyour finger is swollen then that, to me (who is not a doc) hints at rheumatoid arthritis, in which case a GP is not the first point of contact. He should refer you to a rheumatologist, they are the ones that deal with the types that are based on over-active immune systems, which you could possibly have.

    Keep a diary of your symptoms, what makes things worse, what helps, any pain relief that you are taking - is paracetamol enough to help? Keep notes of any other fingers that start to be affected in a similar way, or any other joints. In the meantime I think you should ask to be referred: I didn't, I believed my GP as I knew nothing about arthritis when mine began (aged 37) and as a result, well, never mind about that, water long under the bridge! The fact that it is in its early stages is a nonsense: it needs to be monitored and you need to find out what is behind it all. I wish you well. DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • helpline_team
    helpline_team Posts: 3,578
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi lag1979

    Thank you for your message.

    I’m sorry to hear about the difficulties you are currently experiencing.

    As dreamdaisy mentioned in her reply, it’s important to get an accurate diagnosis of your condition.

    It is worth going back to your doctor and asking to have x-rays done on your hands, wrists and ankles, as well as blood tests. This will hopefully determine if you have arthritis (or something else) and what type. The blood tests will determine whether you have inflammatory arthritis. If this is the case you would need to be referred to a rheumatologist. X-Rays can pick up if you have osteoarthritis, or any damage to the bone and cartilage.

    See our booklet ‘Understanding Arthritis’ for general information on the condition at

    I hope this helps.


  • carola
    carola Member Posts: 786
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00

    Sorry to hear of your useless GP experience.

    I received similar in the early stages and actually had to badger my GP into arranging to see a Rheumy.

    I was then initially diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis however upon my own research I was unconvinced and kept nagging the Rheumy and GP to open up their minds a bit. I was then retested and rediagnsoed with PolyArthritis (arthritis in numerous joints) and SLE (a form of Lupus). So now hopefully I am on the way to correct treatment.

    Basically, what I am trying to say is that if you are unsatsified with treatment then keep going back.

    Your GP said your bumps are cysts? My GP initially said mine were warts!! I told him there and then that they were obviously not warts! You know your own body so keep asking for answers.
    Good luck.