Hello from a newbie

Loulou77
Loulou77 Member Posts: 13
edited 12. Mar 2014, 15:59 in Living with Arthritis archive
Hello,

I have been looking at this forum and reading posts for the past couple of weeks, but I thought I would now join.

I was referred to the rheumatologist yesterday by my GP, so just have the wait now for the appointment to come through.

I had originally gone to my GP months ago with a painful index finger on my right hand. He just prescribed some ibuprofen gel, which really didn't help. I now have a new GP as the old one retired and she seems a lot better. I went to her with the same problem and she sent me for blood tests and xrays. I also told her about other symptoms I get, knees, stiffness in the morning, pain in other fingers, pain in my neck, generally feeling like I am more like 80 than 36. The blood tests came back with a high inflammatory level but the xrays were clear. She said she doesn't believe it is RA but could not rule it out so that's why she is sending me to the rheumy. My finger gets so bad that even the slightest knock really really hurts, and I also can't really write now because of he pressure I'd have to put onto that finger. No obvious signs of swelling though.

Although reading posts here it had never occurred to me that there could be a link with psoriasis. Now I have never been diagnosed with psoriasis, but have had symptoms of this for years and years. I often get areas on my feet which I get small blisters and lose patches of skin and have red itchy areas. Also years ago when I was about 15 I had a nasty outbreak on my hands and feet (started on one palm) of tiny blisters, the doctor just said it was a contact eczema (I had horses at the time and kept them on a sheep farm, so it was thought it might've been from a chemical of some kind), which ended up spreading and I ended up losing layers of skin from my hands, it was really nasty. I have also always had problems with my scalp, thought it was just itchy scalp/dandruff, in fact it's got worse the past few months and I changed from using just vosene to going to the pharmacy and getting a coal tar shampoo which I use a couple times a week when it is bad. Really I should have gone to the docs with this, but by the time I think of it the area bothering me has usually gone again. I also have the red patches of skin under my breasts, but thought this was just down to having large breasts lol! But reading up about it psoriasis really fits with me.

I have found your posts here extremely helpful and I will be certainly making a list to take to my appointment. I suffer from a very bad memory so a list will be very useful else I will forget to mention something.

Thanks,

Loulou x

Comments

  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,552
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello, it's lovely to meet you but I am sorry you have had to find us. I have psoriatic arthritis (PsA) despite not having too much trouble skin-wise. It took years for the diagnosis to be made, it wasn't until my skin flared with blisters on my palms and soles, plus scaly patches elsewhere, that the metaphorical 'light' was switched on and my diagnosis altered from 'inflammatory arthritis' to PsA. It changed nothing meds-wise, however, it was just a different label.

    I am having a rather rough day today, in addition to the Psa, my resulting OA and a recently broken arm I now have a massively sore throat I am feeling rather grim so I'm off back to the sofa to watch Pointless. I look forward to seeing your name here and there around the boards, I wish you well. DD
  • Sarah01
    Sarah01 Member Posts: 192
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Loulou,

    Just popping by to say a big hello and welcome to the forum :)

    I have osteoarthritis in my hips, well only one now after having a hip replacement 7 weeks ago. You will find everyone on here so supportive and helpful whether it's advice you need, a chat or you want to have a good old moan :)

    Take care
    Sarah x
  • Loulou77
    Loulou77 Member Posts: 13
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thank you dreamdaisy and Sarah, big hugs.

    Yes dreamdaisy I have never connected the dots before now, but it's starting to all make sense now you connect things instead of just thinking everything is separate. It's like I never connected the skin problems I have on my feet were connected with my scalp, or the bad episode I had when I was 15. I guess that was a bad flare. At the moment skin seems ok, apart from usual itchy scalp. Why do we go a long time with these things that bother us and it takes them to get really bad before we do anything? I always feel like I am wasting the docs time with all the 'little' niggly things, you just feel like they think it is nothing and you are a hypochondriac!!

    Anyway, it seems like a lovely helpful place, nice to meet you all xx
  • mike26
    mike26 Member Posts: 416
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    hi loulou77
    pleased to meet you,
    I to have PsA ,my psoriasis is better controlled now and not to spread about.
    knees,elbows,lower back,scalp. i use dovobet gel for my skin, and nizoral
    shampoo for my scalp and find it does help me.i also use a double base cream for my skin this also helps to stop drying out to much.
    the arthritis isnt so easy to control hopefully when i start TNFs in a few weeks time this will help.
    hope you can get on right medication soon
    best wishes mike26.. :?
  • phoenixoxo
    phoenixoxo Member Posts: 625
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Loulou,

    I'm about to shut down for the evening, but I just wanted to say hello and thanks for sharing. I have PsA too, plenty of joint problems yet hardly any psoriasis, so it took a while for docs to reach diagnosis, back in 1991.

    It's great that you've found posts here helpful and it's an excellent idea to take a list with you to that first appointment – and follow-up appointments too! Two decades on, I'm still making lists myself :)

    Best wishes,
    Phee
  • Loulou77
    Loulou77 Member Posts: 13
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thanks everybody xx
  • Tubby
    Tubby Member Posts: 177
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I have psoriasis and now psoriatic arthritis. The GP dismissed me as having un-refered pain when I was tested for RA and it came back negative. I had been diagnosed with Psoriasis many years previously (something which did take years to diagnose) but despite me reminding the GP of the links, he and then the next GP, chose to ignore this. I INSISTED that I saw a Rhuematologist who diagnosed.....guess what? Psoriatic Arthritis.

    I had been told previously that the chemicals I had worked with had caused my skin condition (I also had a horse [never blamed] but there were no sheep!) - I worked at a swimming pool and dealt with chlorine- but it eventually turned out that the psoriasis had been triggered by the Glandular Fever (an immune system disease) I had at the same time.

    I have a number of potions which keep the psoriasis in check - mainly based around Adphosil (Coal Tar based) but it took a 'geek' (research scientist) at a major teaching hospital to find the right combination of drugs for me and to make the diagnosis on the skin condition.

    All I can say, is however tired and frustrated you get, be persistent as there is a lot more support available once you have a definite prognosis.

    Good luck and keep talking to us - it really does feel better to talk.
  • villier
    villier Member Posts: 4,426
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi

    Just want to welcome you to the forum, it is OA I have and a few other bits of dross going on. It is a great forum with lots of knowledge, sympathy and can have lots of laughter as well, nice to meet you hope to see you around...............Marie x
  • bubbadog
    bubbadog Member Posts: 5,544
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi loulou, wanted to welcome you to Arthritis Care forum, I've got Inflammatory Arthritis, Osteoporosis & Fibromyalgia. I'm 41 this year and feel like a I have a body of a 81yr old!! It was the best thing I ever did joining these guys. You have done a good thing joining here as you will get all the support you need. Welcome to the Arthritis Care forum family!!
  • barbara12
    barbara12 Member Posts: 21,235
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello Loulou
    Welcome to the forum, I see you are already getting lots of help from all the post you have read ...Arthritis so complex and I hadn't realised this till I joined the forum.
    You do seem to have a good GP now who is doing all the test that many wait ages for ..so you keep us updated has to what the rheumy thinks.
    Wishing you well with it all x
  • Loulou77
    Loulou77 Member Posts: 13
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thank you to all of you for your replies xx

    Today I've been feeling stiff. Not so much painful, but more like I am having problems getting mobile. I get this quite a bit in my hands, they just don't do what I want them to do sometimes!! I just went to the shop for a few bits, two lots of milk (4 pints) and a bag of potatoes (5kg), as well as some lighter stuff. But I really struggled with it today :( I suppose it's like this at the start, some days I am absolutely fine (although my finger hurts every day) but other days I struggle getting out of bed and walking down the stairs.
  • bubbadog
    bubbadog Member Posts: 5,544
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Loulou, your right some days you feel pretty good but bad days do sneak up on you and catch you out. I was taught this more the guys on here, when you have a good day don't push yourself to do to much otherwise you will pay for it two fold. That has helped me. You have to listen to your body it will tell you when you are pushing it to far by little shots of pain that's when you have to slow down. It's just the long road to learning to live with Arthritis.
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 26,619
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Yes, it's an up and down disease though, once stabilised on meds, it should be on more of an even keel. As for hands – mine started there. I stopped playing the piano because I was hitting all the wrong notes even though I felt as it my fingers were in the right position. Not just painful but annoying too :roll:
  • Lubs
    Lubs Member Posts: 155
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Loulou,

    Welcome to the site. I also have PsA but no psoriasis! They made the diagnosis in the absence of RA genetic markers, and the presence of pitting in the nails. I have visible changes in the spine, hands, feet, knees, etc. I am waiting on my rheumatology team to confirm (in writing) if I have something to do with the spine, anklosying spondyltis. One minute they verbally say you have it but do not tell your GP. Which is important!

    Take care,
    Lubs
  • Loulou77
    Loulou77 Member Posts: 13
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Had my appointment with the rheumy through a couple of days ago, it's on May 9th. Just waiting now, but I will definitely take notes as others here have said. Just hope the appointment will shed some light on things. Fingers have been worse past few days and been hurting more in other places at times too. But very up and down.

    Take care everybody, hugs
  • phoenixoxo
    phoenixoxo Member Posts: 625
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi again, Loulou,

    That's great news, getting your appointment letter. May seems far away, but I find that time speeds up once into spring – though that's just me, perhaps! :lol:

    In the meantime, maybe keep in touch with your GP about your pain levels in case you need stronger meds :?:

    Best wishes,
    Phee

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