New here and need a bit of advice

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Katinka
Katinka Member Posts: 2
edited 27. Mar 2016, 00:06 in Say Hello Archive
Hello, I'm new! This is my story, hopefully someone can give some advice or let me know if they have experienced similar:

I'm 50, female. About 6 months ago I went to a podiatrist about a toe nail that was growing strangely. She felt my bones and said that I have arthritis in both my big toes, one slightly worse. They do ache when walking sometimes but not too badly.

What concerns me is the pain I get in my hand and arm, and the speed at which this has got worse. About 9 months ago I noticed my wrists feeling stiff and painful in the mornings on waking. Since then the pain in my wrist and arm has got much much worse. I still get the painful stiffness in the morning, but now my right arm and wrist are often aching during the day too. It can be very painful at night and stop me sleeping or even wake me up.

I also get acute pain that lasts from 30 seconds to 2 minutes when I do certain things with my right arm. This can be anything from pulling up my jeans, holding onto an overhead bar on the train, putting my right arm behind my back or over my shoulder etc. Sometimes this pain is very severe if I move my right arm very quickly, so much so that it can make me cry out and my right hand is left weak for a minute or two. This pain can either be centred around my wrist elbow and seems to radiate up and down the arm.

I did go to see my GP who didn't actually confirm it was arthritis but said " oh we all get arthritis " ( so helpful!). She did send off bloods and confirmed that I didn't have any of whatever they look for to indicate rheumatoid arthritis. Only advice was about taking naproxen at night to Alleviate the pain at night and help me sleep, which I haven't done as I take a lot of painkillers for migraines and I don't want to be taking one every night.

I guess my question is: is it common to go from no signs of arthritis at to pain at night that can stop you sleeping in about nine months? Also, is the acute pain when I move my arm common with arthritis?

Finally, I have just read on here that there are other types of arthritis that are connected with the autoimmune system but are not rheumatoid? Is this correct, and is this something I should get checked out? I guess I'm concerned because my mother died of an autoimmune disease in her 50s.

Sorry for the long post!

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  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 3,635
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hello katinka

    Welcome to Arthritis Care Forums. As mods we are here to help with any problems you may have on the message boards.

    There are lots of lovely people here with a wide range of experiences with arthritis and the problems of living with the condition. Just join in wherever you like you will be made very welcome.

    I look forward to seeing you posting on the boards.

    All best wishes
    mod Christine R :)
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hello, it's nice to meet you but I am sorry you have had to find us. Osteo arthritis (OA) is very common and is dealt with by GPs, there around ten million people in the UK with arthritis and the majority have OA. I am one of the lucky ones with a creaky foot in both arthritis camps, I began with an auto-immune form affecting one joint, many moons later it's around forty and the joint damage caused has led to OA in some useful places. I began aged 37, now I'm 57.

    There are around 300 kinds of auto-immune inflammatory conditions including various kinds of arthritis (it is thought that OA has a different cause not related to an over-active immune system). Mine is psoriatic arthritis (PsA) but I do not have a great deal of the skin trouble, I was born with eczema and went on to develop asthma so auto-immune nonsense has always been part of my life.

    I suspect the blood results your GP received were sero-negative i.e. rheumatoid factor was not present but that does not rule out an auto-immune arthritis, mine is one of those. RA is diagnosed when rheumatoid factor is present which is why she has ruled it out but, with respect, GPs know a little about a lot whereas rheumatologists know a lot about a little. has your doc suggested a referral?

    Things can deteriorate quite rapidly with any form of arthritis, it can take years or months, nobody knows how it will develop. Naproxen is an NSAID, no-steroidal anti inflammatory drug, I took it for while, it did nothing for me in relieving pain but it helped a little with the inflammation. Are your joints swollen or hot to the touch? DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,719
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hello from me, too. As DD says, any kine of arthritis can progress quickly but your GP is wrong. Not everyone gets it. It's true that some forms of autoimmune arthritis are sero-negative so having a clear test doesn't mean yoi haven't got one. It only rules out the more obvious.

    Do you have early morning stiffness? Fu- like fatigue? Maybe get another opinion. Ensure your doc knows about the family autoimmune connection.

    Sorry, my battery's going. And so must I
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright