Newbie awaiting diagnosis

Dozzle
Dozzle Member Posts: 3
edited 28. Jun 2017, 02:51 in Say Hello Archive
Hello,

I'm 51 years old and have recently started having painful,joints in my hands. I am just thru the menopause and have been hypermobility all my life. My joints have quickly stiffened and range of movement reduced, especially in my hands.

I fear I have OA in my hands and saw my GP last week. They have taken bloods to rule out other possibilities and I am waiting for the results.

I feel rather depressed and worry about the future. Does OA in hands get worse over time? Does it depend on the individual? How much should I use them? Anyone find any supplements help? Loads of questions running round in my head.....

Comments

  • moderator
    moderator Moderator Posts: 4,086
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Dozzle,
    firstly I would like to welcome you to the online community and I'm very glad that you have found us. I am sure you must have a lot of questions running around in your head and dealing with your immediate questions and concerns is what we are here for. As you will know Hypermobility is not a type of arthritis, however it can sometimes be associated with osteoarthritis, you can read more about this here http://www.arthritisresearchuk.org/arthritis-information/conditions/joint-hypermobility/other-symptoms-and-related-conditions.aspx
    you have certainly done the right thing by visiting your GP and getting all the necessary tests done so that they can find out exactly what is happening for you. It is very difficult at this stage not to worry about the future so we will do our best to support you during this time. As you have recognised yourself, osteoarthritis varies from person to person and there is no way of really telling how it will progress for you. Whilst you are waiting for your results there are things you can do to help yourself. At this stage you will want some reassurance so you might find our fact sheet on osteoarthritis of the hand and wrist useful, here is a link for you https://www.arthritiscare.org.uk/do-i-have-arthritis/publications/671-osteoarthritis-of-the-hand-and-wrist
    on the fact sheet you will notice there is a section about what you can do to help yourself, including using heat and cold as a way of dealing with the pain and stiffness in your hands. There is also a section on hand exercises which may help you to maintain your hand flexibility and whilst they may be painful to start with gently incorporating these exercises into your day may prove to be helpful. We do also have a large section on the website which covers living with osteoarthritis generally and you may find it useful to look at https://www.arthritiscare.org.uk/do-i-have-arthritis/a-z-of-types/62-osteoarthritis
    I am sure that some of our community members will also give you lots of information about their experience of osteoarthritis and pain in the hands as there are quite a few of them here who have that experience. If you would like to talk to somebody you can always phone our helpline on 0808 800 4050, they are open during office hours Monday to Friday. Please do not hesitate to ask lots more questions and it may be worth posting these questions in the living with arthritis forum as this is where most of our members hang out.
    Best Wishes
    Sharon
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 26,271
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Dozzle and welcome from me, too :)

    Of course you are feeling anxious and a bit down about a diagnosis of arthritis. It's only natural and most people do. But I promise you it's not the end of the world. You may, over time, have to make some changes to how you do things but the human body, and mind, are amazing things and they learn to adapt.

    I think, if you are hypermobile, it's likely that yours is osteoarthritis as hypermobility can result in OA. If so, you will be treated by your GP. There's not a great deal they can do for OA. Mostly it's more what we can do for ourselves - keeping mobile etc.

    Does it get worse over time? That, I'm afraid, is a 'how long is a piece of string' question. It might. It probably will but over how much time? It might get worse only over a long time. I hope so. We're all different so it's impossible to predict.

    How much should you use them? My take on it has always been as much as possible while trying to avoid things that clearly stress them. (I say 'trying': with hands it's virtually impossible :roll: ) But we need to keep the supporting muscles strong so check out the hand exercises here https://www.arthritiscare.org.uk/do-i-have-arthritis/publications/1313-exercise-and-arthritis . Even when they are really painful it's best to take them through the range of movement ones every day to try to keep that movement.

    Supplements? Arthritis Research UK has some very comprehensive analyses of them. Try here http://tinyurl.com/y7dnq6f5. But do remember, with supplements, that they can interact both with each other and with any prescribed medication. It's always best to check with your local pharmacist.

    And, if you've other questions, ask away. We're here to support each other. Living With Arthritis forum is where you'll get more replies.
    "The deeper sorrow carves into your being the more joy you can contain." Kahlil Gibran
  • Dozzle
    Dozzle Member Posts: 3
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thank you guys for your kind replies.

    I have had my bloods taken and they are normal. So I guess it is the start of OA. I'll be back to the GPs for any advice.

    I have downloaded the leaflets and have started the exercises for hands, hips, knees etc. Hopefully these will help.

    Still feel depressed but will be mentioning this to my GP. In the meantime, I am trying to keep going and not over think things with regards to the future. I have recently started mindfulness meditation which helps,with that.

    Thanks again for your replies. Xx
  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 26,739
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Dozzle wrote:

    .............
    Still feel depressed but will be mentioning this to my GP. In the meantime, I am trying to keep going and not over think things with regards to the future. I have recently started mindfulness meditation which helps,with that.

    Hi Dozzle and welcome from me too :) I think mindfulness really will help you.

    Have you thought about doing one of arthritis care's courses?

    https://www.arthritiscare.org.uk/our-services-and-support/events/filter:Courses and Workshops

    I did the living with you long term condition one a few years ago and it really helped me. I think it will be the pain management one now.

    Mixing with others in a similar position is also very helpful I think.

    Love

    Toni xx
    Love

    Toni xxx