Facet Joint Arthritis; sweating, advice needed (first post)

CathrynJane
CathrynJane Member Posts: 7
edited 4. Sep 2013, 17:29 in Living with Arthritis archive
Hello all.

This is my first post and I hope someone will be able to offer me some advice. I had an MRI and they found L3 L4 facet joint arthritis. I'm 60. Paracetamol doesn't really touch it and codeine gives me itchy skin. For some reason I have morning sweating and daytime chills. Doesn't anyone know if that can accompany facet joint arthritis? I'm really worried I won't be able to do my job (I'm a teacher) and have no idea on how to proceed past a diagnosis. Can anyone help?
Many thanks,
Cathy.

Comments

  • Toots
    Toots Member Posts: 483
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Cathy

    I really can't answer your questions I'm afraid, but hopefully someone may be along to offer advice. In the meantime, welcome from another newbie, and, if I may, hugs! x
  • frogmella
    frogmella Member Posts: 1,115
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Cathy,

    I had facet joint arthritis. I say had because 6 months ago I had my second spinal fusion and the joints were removed and I am now better. Anyway, that is by the by.

    I too had morning sweats/hot flushes. I never managed to pin down the cause. As I had previously had an infection in my first fusion site I was worried it might be due to lingering infection but that turned out not to be the case. I also wondered about early menopause (I am 37). I thought that mine might have been caused by stress - I too am a teacher and found working very difficult. I also ended up having a whole year off sick after my infected hardware was removed and that was stressful in itself. I do get sweaty when I am stressed so maybe that was the cause? But then you posting this has made me wonder!!

    I got lucky with my second surgeon who officially diagnosed my facet joint arthritis. He did injections in the joints to diagnose. Then, once the good effects had worn off, he offered fusion.

    I have has lots of experience of spinal problems - my disc went back in 2009 - and have seen good and bad surgeons. As well as my share of good/bad/indifferent GPS, pain management, counselling etc. I am more than happy to share information/advice - PM me if you would like?

    I know how tough teaching is with the awful pain from this condition. I am only part time and still spent quite a lot of my free time back in bed.

    I can say though that my surgery has been a success this time. It was a rough first few days but now I wake up with no pain.

    If I can help just let me know.

    Helen
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello, it's nice to meet you. I don't have the same arthritis as you but I do have a problem with flushes and sweating; my body seems unable to regulate its temperature so my rheumatologist has given me a blood test form to assess how my thyroid is - or maybe isn't - working. Your GP may be able to help you on this front, and with pain relief too, there are other options on that but whatever the med it won't take it all away - the stronger the relief the more you are taken away from the pain, not vice versa. I wish you well. DD
  • CathrynJane
    CathrynJane Member Posts: 7
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thanks everyone for the replies; it's good to know there are so many kind people prepared to support each other out there.

    I'm so pleased that they were able to do something for your facet joint arthritis Frogmella. Has the fusion limited your mobility in any way? The grinding sensation I get at the bottom of my spine is unpleasant and I have had a fair bit of pain , but a fusion seems quite serious. Apparently I also have a protruding disk but I don't know much about that yet.

    Interesting that both you and Dreamdaisy both had sweating. Perhaps it's something to be aware of. It's very distressing.

    You're a teacher as well? Yes it isn't easy especially if you don't know when you wake up if you'll be having a good or bad day. I'm concerned that bad days are going to coincide with my teaching and that will cause a lot of problems.

    Thanks for the hugs Toots. Thanks Dreamdaisy. Thanks Frogmella.

    Cathy.
  • frogmella
    frogmella Member Posts: 1,115
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi CathrynJane,

    This was my second fusion and, actually, I think I am bendier now than I was before i had it done. I think there was quite a bit of "guarding" going on around the arthritic level. You are right, fusion is a massive surgery, but after the first few days in hospital (when i wondered what on earth I had done) I haven't looked back. It is true I still have restrictions but I can do such a lot now that I couldn't before. The major plus being that I am pain free!

    I made the decision because good days were very rare - the best I felt was when I had norovirus and so did nothing for three days and my pain diminished! Perhaps not the best treatment! But it did cement in my mind the idea that if that level stopped moving then maybe my pain would go.

    I think you have to get to the right place in your head to decide to go for surgery. I was at rock bottom really and decided that I had to try something. I am "only" 37 and wanted my life back.

    I hope that you get some help and please do feel free to PM me if you want any more info. :)
  • CathrynJane
    CathrynJane Member Posts: 7
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thanks very much Frogmella for talking about how your fusion went; I'm not sure at the moment how my back is going to be. I've got a physio appointment tomorrow and I don't know if that will help. I hope it doesn't make it worse. I've taken to sleeping on the sofa as it is really soft and that seems to reduce the pain I used to get getting out of my memory foam bed. You'd think it would be the other way round wouldn't you?

    I'm so glad you're able to have your life back. It seems to have worked out very well for you.

    I'll pm you with my email address. I'd like to get in touch as it's sometimes difficult to find these messages again.

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