Hi, I'm new and confused...

Debs42
Debs42 Member Posts: 14
edited 31. Mar 2011, 11:49 in Say Hello Archive
For the past 3-4 months i have had a very painfull left hip/leg, saw my GP who ordered blood tests. ESR came back abnormal, so was given anti inflammatories and pain killers and told to return in a couple of weeks time. This i did, as my hip/leg felt no better,GP then arranged a hip and pelvis xray. The results of this were strange to me, they showed nothing wrong with my left hip, but showed early stages of arthritis in my sacroilliac joint in my pelvis, but on the right side. But my GP just said nothing to worry about and that i would not feel the effects of this untill i reach my 80's (I'm 42 this year) and that it would be with me for life and does not go away.There was no mention of what (if anything) should happen next,like when it will start to get worse, or spread, or will i need to see a specialist, should i be taking any meds, will i need to be seen for further tests to find out what type of arthritis I have! What i would like to know is should i see another GP or am i worrying about nothing... I feel like i know nothing about this condition or even if i should be concerned. Please help.... :???:

Yours gratefully
Debs42

Comments

  • Hollylou
    Hollylou Member Posts: 4
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Debs, I am new and confused too with a vaguely similar story to yours. I went to the GP at Xmas with a sore right hip. She sent me for an xray which showed impingement and early stage OA. In early March I went to the Specialist for a followup and he basically said I had OA in both hips (although I only feel it in one). He very briefly said just to take pain killers and sometime in the future I may need a hip replacement. Since this apt my hip has got a lot worse although the pain seems to be in the muscle down my thigh. I am also now having problems with my left shoulder and the pain is in the muscle down the arm which confuses me. I now have a distinct limp and first steps are extremely painful but it usually loosens up and is less painful after moving a little while. What I cannot understand is the speed with which I have changed from a fit 52 year old who loves hiking to a slow walking old lady, overnight. I think I am going to make an apt to the GP for advice as there is so much I cannot understand. Like you I worry that I maybe should be taking medication to prevent it getting worse. Also should I be moving about more or less, should I ignore the pain and carry on, or save on the joint to try to improve the pain. I have no pain when I lie or sit down. There are so many questions unanswered.
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,558
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Hollylou, I hope I can answer some of your questions.

    You have been told that you have OA, it's affecting both hips and now perhaps your shoulder. OA does this, it's a degenerative disease and like the other versions of this pestilence it will find new areas to affect. As to where you are feeling pain well, when affected by arthritis one tends to hold oneself differently, walk differently, keep things rather tense than relaxed and this has a knock-on effect on your muscles - I suspect that is why they are twingeing. You may find using a stick when walking will help this - it offers support and eases some of the stresses when doing that activity - use it on the opposite side to the worst affected hip to gain the maximium benefit. If you need to use two for better relief then do so - you will find you will be able to walk better and further once that support is in place. You say you have no pain when sitting or lying - that is a very good thing, appreciate that whilst it's there! Yes, things are often more difficult in the morning but as time wears on they ease - that is par for the course.

    With OA it is best to keep as active as possible but with doing lower-impact exercise such as cycling or swimming. Walking is OK as long as you have good, supportive footwear, ie not Uggs or flipflops! This helps to keep your muscles strong and thus they support your joints far better. To sit around more is not good for your joints or your overall health, so if you can keep moving, do. Do not over-do it though, your stamina may be affected by this and it is not good to force yourself to much. You may find increased levels of tiredness too - again this is normal.

    As regards medication, well for OA it comes down to pain dullers and perhaps anti-inflammatories (your GP can advise on that). They will not inhibit the progress of the disease but they should ease the symptoms sufficiently to make life more tolerable. No-one can say how yours will develop, at what rate or how badly - your OA is unique to you. Joint replacement may seem scary but it can mean getting your life back.

    Perhaps you should ask your doctor about calcium supplements too - they can help some people, not all, but it's worth a try I would have thought.

    I hope this has helped. I wish you well. DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • constable
    constable Member Posts: 2,115
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi there,

    I think that DD has really said it all. I totally agree with using a stick, it really does help. I know that both of you will get enormous support on here with great ideas.

    I am waiting for THR at the moment, severe arthritus in left hip and arthritus is lower back. As DD said try not to overdo it, and yes, I to have the pain down the leg as well going right down to my foot, so keep going and if necessary go back to you doc and they should also give you inti-inflamatorries.

    Karen xx
    Karen xx
  • Hollylou
    Hollylou Member Posts: 4
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thank you for the advice it is very much appreciated. What confuses me too is the fact that I have had knee probs for 30 years. My knee wd swell slightly and I would not be able to straighten it for a few days, then it would be fine and I could walk 10 miles or more without a problem. I am now told I have extensive OA in my knee although I have very little pain or discomfort!! However, recently I was told I had 'early stage' OA in my hip and this is causing me excruciating pain at times. If I move to the side suddenly I have to cry out. This came on almost overnight. I suppose what I'm concerned about is that I have been misdiagnosed and I might have something else which I may be ignoring or could be treated successfully. I have been reading on the internet about fibromyalgia and wondering if it could be that because the pain is worst in the muscles. Maybe I am also in the denial stage but it is just not how I thought arthritis would present itself. If it continues like this I will not be able to work full time, possibly not even part time and this scares me.
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,558
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hip joints are different to knee joints so I think they will feel different, react differently and present a different set of problems. If you know what movements to avoid, avoid them. One learns to adjust.

    No-one knows what the future holds for them regardless of whether they have arthritis or not. You have been having knee problems for some time - why do you suspect fibro? I think your muscles are protesting as you have (quite unconciously, I suspect) altered the way you walk and stand. There has been a discussion this week on the LWA forum about the benefits of massage - perhaps a good, deep-muscle rub would help those muscles of yours to un-knot and relax. You never know!

    You may not like the idea of a stick but I think it could make a big difference. Unlike crutches they can be colourful at a reasonable cost, so it may be worth splashing out a few pounds on one in your favourite colour to see how you get on with it. I am lumbered with crutches in the regulation aluminuim. Very dull.

    I wish you well. DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben