New diagnosis (I think)

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EllieT
EllieT Member Posts: 8
Hi

I'm 43 years old and have had hip pain for many years, certainly since I was 10 years old. However, it's only since having kids it's got worse. I've also had recurrent back pain. I finally went to the GP, on the advice of a chiropractor who I'd seen privately and who made my pain much worse! Anyway, GP prescribed Naproxen and X-rays (lower spine and hips), which I went for the results of yesterday. He read the results of the X-ray to me, can't remember much but disc erosion and narrowing (hips, I wish they were narrow!) were mentioned. He then turned to me and said "so it's arthritis. There's nothing we can do about it. Take paracetamol or paracetamol and codeine when it's bad. You might find it gets better in spring. There's no point taking NSAIDs, they'll just make you bleed in your stomach. Physio won't be any benefit either". He advised swimming (I can't). He told me to bend from the knees, I said I find that difficult because my knees are painful. He didn't ask about any other parts of my body being sore, nor did he ask how I was physically (exhausted and sore all over). He did say I could phone for a telephone triage appointment if I needed stronger painkillers but otherwise, there's no telling how quickly it will get worse but it will get worse.

I left in tears and spent the evening crying, but today I feel stronger. I also feel that I wasn't treated properly, or investigated thoroughly. But is that just me, or would you say that at the very least blood tests could also be done? My GPs never cease to amaze me with their opinions on medical matters which I do know something about!

Ellie (43 going on 93)

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  • helpline_team
    helpline_team Posts: 3,534
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Ellie
    I am so sorry to hear that your experience of the GP left you in tears, though glad to hear today you feel stronger. You ask if blood tests could be done, well if you have osteoarthritis there is no blood test, though you may be given a one to rule out or confirm other types of arthritis.

    You say the GP said ‘so its arthritis’,’ there’s nothing we can do about it’. It sounds as though you felt dismissed by the GP as well as a feeling of not being understood.

    I wonder if your GP is part of a group practice and whether it might be helpful to see a different one. Aside from that when you do see the doctor you could ask what type of arthritis you have.
    You say that you’ve had hip pain for many years and recurrent back pain, it may also be worth talking to the GP about a referral to a consultant.
    The link below is to Arthritis Research UK information on back pain, which may be of interest:
    http://www.arthritisresearchuk.org/arthritis-information/conditions/back-pain.aspx

    If you have Osteoarthritis, sometimes described by the GP as ‘wear and tear’. This is the most common type of arthritis and is largely self-managed with diet and exercise. Low impact exercise such as walking can be helpful.
    You will find more information about the self-management of arthritis on the link below:
    http://www.arthritiscare.org.uk/PublicationsandResources/Selfmanagement
    Ellie I wonder if it would be helpful if you gave us a ring on our Helplines 0808 800 4050 (Monday-Friday 10-4) here we can talk to you informally and in confidence, sometimes it can help. We can explore options with you as well as offering a listening ear.

    You may also like to post on the ‘Living with arthritis’ forum, here you will find people share their experiences and also gain support from each other: http://arthritiscareforum.org.uk/viewforum.php?f=8

    I hope this has been of some help.
    Best wishes
    Lynda
  • hileena111
    hileena111 Member Posts: 7,099
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Ellie
    I think Lynda has said it all.
    Referral to a consultant, the helpline and the booklets etc

    Good luck
    When you post of Living with Arthritis keep talking to us....it does help
    Between the lot of us we have a lot of different kinds of arthritis :wink:

    Love
    Hileena
  • EllieT
    EllieT Member Posts: 8
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Thank you Hileena and Lynda - somehow I hadn't seen Lynda's reply till now but it's got a lot of useful stuff in there. I've got some books out of the library and had some time to think about it all. Next step is to go back to the GP - a different one - and see if I can get any further info. I don't really want to just accept that this is it for the next X years without a bit more investigation. And I want physio, even if they don't think I need it. Because I keep pulling muscles doing the most simple things so I need to strengthen things up without doing more damage.

    Anyway, I shall indeed keep visiting here and post in the chat section. I feel a bit of a fraud though as there are some very sad stories and some very brave people in there.

    Thank you again

    Ellie
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,719
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    EllieT wrote:
    I want physio, even if they don't think I need it. Because I keep pulling muscles doing the most simple things so I need to strengthen things up without doing more damage.

    Have a look here, EllieT and good luck :D
    http://www.arthritiscare.org.uk/PublicationsandResources/Listedbysubject
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright