What is a flare up?

5hellsbells
5hellsbells Member Posts: 49
edited 14. Aug 2017, 11:26 in Living with Arthritis archive
Sorry if this is a stupid question.
I know a flare up is a worsening of our symptoms..

Howerver..im on week 5 of taking Hydroxy (again..MTX + sulfa werent playing nice)

For the past week and 1/2..ive been feeling good..my swollen hand (has been since i came of sulfa/before i went on hydroxy) started to feel + look better..
And i was feeling.positive ..

However..on wed morn (day i was due back at work after 12 days off!) I woke with an all to familiar pain in my left foot..which again left me limping but improved during the day/after ibuprofen..

Is this a (mild..i know it will get a lot worse) flare up...or is it just my bodys "default setting" now and the Hydroxy just hasnt kicked in? (If that make sense?)

Sorry again if this is a silly question...

Shelly
X

Comments

  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I think it's an individual thing and this is my experience.

    I associate the term flare with auto-immune arthritis and for me it affects my whole body. It is long-lasting, not just a matter of hours or days and is out of my control. I never know when it is going to do it, sometimes I think it will and it doesn't then, at other times like now when things have been going so well, it hits out of the blue. (That'll teach me to enjoy life :wink: )

    I do not associate the term with my OA: I know it will feel worse due to two things I can control and one thing I cannot. It will feel more painful if I eat pickle and other acidic foodstuffs, and if I over-do things - these I can control. It will feel more painful during low-pressure and cold weather which I can't control. It does not affect my whole body, does not cause me to feel extra tired to the point of nausea and does not completely sap my energy. I can still get on and get things done with more painful OA but struggle with everything when the PsA is letting me know it's still there. DD
  • 5hellsbells
    5hellsbells Member Posts: 49
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thanks DreamDaisy..

    I have RA...and i dont think ive consumed anything different im the passed week or so...and prior to starting back at work..i was taking it easy (as easy as a mum of 3 during summer holdays can...)

    Im not working today..and the pain has reduced after taking my ibuprofen...still there..but nowhere near as bad..(sometimes it takes a lot longer and doesnt reduce as much..just take the edge off)

    Im just hoping this isnt my "normal" i can cope with the pain..but i dont knoe how well id cope knowing i wont get a break from it..

    I have the RA clinic next friday..hopefully itll ease before then...

    Xx
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,224
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    It's certainly not a silly question. In fact, it's such a good one I don't think I can answer it.

    Personally, I think the term 'flare' (usually followed nowadays by 'up' ) means such different things to different people that it actually has no real , meaning at all. When anyone on the forum says they are having a flare (up) I take it to mean they are in more pain than usual and I hope I commiserate. But, for me, a flare is more than that and for me, fortunately, they are very rare and I don't think I've ever got over one without a change of DMARD or a course of steroids.

    I really don't know what yours is. Maybe, as you say, the hydroxy hasn't quite kicked in yet. I hope that is the case. But it's good that you have an appointment and can find out what your rheumatologist thinks. I hope it will be good news.
  • 5hellsbells
    5hellsbells Member Posts: 49
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thanks StickyWicket xx

    I think in my head i imagine that a Flare Up is when im going to be floored..in pain..but poorly with it too..

    Im wondering if its maybe just a flare in my foot (so just the pain/heat/swelling that i recognise as a typical symptom..

    Before i was on the hydroxy...my hand was quite bad..when i went to the day ward 5 weeks ago..the nurse wanted to scan it and inject it...the sheer panic in my face showed her that wasnt an option..
    My hand was really swollen and i was told it looked liked id punched someone!

    Its has down a lot now tho..and my foot is also not as bad today ( wasnt working yesterday..)

    Im sure my Rheumy will set my mind at rest...i was just panicing cos the kids are back to school on Tuesday and driving 1st thing when my foot is sore is no fun at all...

    Thanks again for the advice xx
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,224
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I well remember those days :roll:

    As for 'flare', the philosopher Wittgenstein said 'The meaning of a word is its use in the language'. So true.
  • 5hellsbells
    5hellsbells Member Posts: 49
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I well remember those days :roll:

    As for 'flare', the philosopher Wittgenstein said 'The meaning of a word is its use in the language'. So true.


    Or as my mam always said...
    "Its not what you say.....its the way you say it!" :lol:
  • bubbadog
    bubbadog Member Posts: 5,544
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Well I've been suffering with my 'flare up' for a good couple of weeks now as DD said it effects your whole body a draining type of pain and makes you feel like you haven't slept for weeks. All I've wanted to do is rest in bed. And when I do feel a little more active I go on my laptop (like now) to catch up on how everyone else on here is doing. I have no idea how long it will last it is up to my body so I have to go with it. It does get me down as I feel rubbish and I'm used to being my bubbly self.
  • 5hellsbells
    5hellsbells Member Posts: 49
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    So sorry to hear that Bubbadog..hope it eases soon and you can get back to being your bubby self xx