I was diagnosed with Sero Negative Inflammatory Arthritis 5 years ago, aged 24, after a bout of cellulitis in my left foot. Days after the cellulitis infection had cleared I woke up one morning and my left knee was the size of a grapefruit and incredibly stiff and painful. The inflammation lasted for about 15 months; eventually recovering after it was drained a second time and I had a steroid injection.
I have taken Sulfasalazine ever since my diagnosis and was in the process of lowering my dose, hopeful that the worst was over. Unfortunately 5 months ago my left hip started to become painful and stiff. This is confirmed as a flare up and my Sulfasalazine dose has been increased. I am playing the waiting game again.
I have decided to look for support after all these years because I am approaching my 30th birthday and am struggling to come to terms with this second flare up of arthritis. A large part of me really believed that it wouldn’t come back again and there had been a mistake with my diagnosis. I accept that I was wrong and hope that the hip will recover, as my knee did.
I have one question about how people react when you tell them about having arthritis. First time round, I didn’t tell many people, including my managers at work, about my condition. I wasn’t very accepting of it and it didn’t affect my day to day life all that much (only a dull pain when walking) so it didn’t feel necessary to tell people. Now it is in my hip I am finding it harder to cope and realise I need to let people know what is going on so they can understand and help me with it.
My concern is that because I am still quite young that people will have a lot of questions and I won’t know how to answer them. Can anyone offer any advice and their experience with this?
Many thanks for reading my post!