Pyoderma Gangrenosum & Rheumatoid Arthritis

Mavic Member Posts: 12
edited 22. Aug 2019, 13:57 in Chat to our Helpline Team
Hello Again

About five years ago I had a wound at the back of my lower left leg. I slipped and caused a friction type burn, over the fast few months it slowly broken down from a two inch wound to 9inch by 9inch within weeks.

It refuses to heal and with a weak immune system doesn’t quite help. Does anyone else have the same with Rheumatoid Arthritis, the professor who looks after my wound says it will heal, five years on I don’t think it will.

More awareness should be made available if you ever have any type of wound with any autoimmune problems. Sadly for me nothing was available to try and stop this before it become problematic. I just like to know that I am not alone and maybe someone on the forum as the same condition as me?



  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello again, just DD here. Whenever my skin is damaged by something I stop my meds for a while to help things heal (this is on the advice of my hospital). There is a risk the arthritis might flare but it hasn't as yet. With a suppressed immune system healing is harder and sometimes things get so bad that drastic measures are required. DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • helpline_team
    helpline_team Posts: 3,409
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Phil
    I'm sorry to learn of the complications you are experiencing with the management of the pyoderma gangrenosum wound and RA.
    Thanks to DreamDaisy for sharing her insight. You may also wish to post this on the Living with Arthritis forum to get insight from others who may have pyoderma gangrenosum and other skin conditions.
    You raise an interesting point about raising awareness of wound management for people with autoimmune conditions. I will pass this on to our content team for consideration.
    We don't have any specific information on pyoderma gangrenosum, but according to the NHS information the skin condition is thought to be caused by an overactive immune system and people with RA are at risk of developing pyoderma gangrenosum, even if the condition is mild or well controlled. 
    You may be interested to learn that Versus Arthritis is working in partnership with a group of medical research charities to change the way that autoimmune conditions are studied. You can find out more about the research project, which is called Connect Immune Research, here:
    Best wishes
    Mags, Helpline advisor
  • Mavic
    Mavic Member Posts: 12
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thank you.
  • Eir23
    Eir23 Member Posts: 20
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Phil

    I am so sorry to hear you have Pyoderma Gangrenosum, I have too experienced these on several occasions, twice were very serious cases. I don't think anyone can understand how painful and uncomfortable they can be unless they have experienced them. I also have RA as well as Psoriasis, Scleroderma and Raynaurds.

    The first time they took around 8 months to heal with full bandage compression, and I also developed cellulitis from them. The last time in 2015 I got the cellulitis first then the two ulcers, one the size of a hand, the other half the size. I started with bandaged compression again, but later swapped to a Juxta-fit which was fantastic and sped up the healing. Both times, I took my medication as normal unless I had an infection.

    What treatment are you having for them? I'm assuming your in some form of compression.

    If you have any questions, please ask, If I can help, I will.
  • Mavic
    Mavic Member Posts: 12

    Hi it’s 2022 and my wound is still the same, it won’t heal now I don’t think. My immune system won’t fight it, I guess that’s RA for you. Take care all.

  • Hi @Mavic

    Thank you for commenting.

    Just reaching out, hoping that you are in regular contact with your GP or Rheumatologist and that you have a treatment plan in place.

    If you do need further support please do get in touch.


    Helen, Helpline team

  • Mavic
    Mavic Member Posts: 12

    I have a wound consultant Professor Harding who six years ago said to me and my wife I will get that healthy and healed before you know it. Sadly the RA had other ideas, the GP is as about much use as a chocolate teapot when it comes to it. I’ve been given so many different strains of antibiotics that my body has become resilient to them. Infections caused by the nurses at the practice during wound change, that for the last two years my wife has been doing it at home no infections since. And the fact that I. Worried about if contact an infection and I need a antibiotic and it won’t work that can be dangerous for me especially a suppressed immune system. And the Rheumatologist won’t even look at it lol.

  • Hi Mavic


    Thank you for your posting. I am so sorry to hear that you have had these issues with your health. Unfortunately, we are not medically trained so it would be a health care professional that you would need to see for advise and treatment. It could be that seeking a second opinion might be an option. Possibly seeing another GP at the GP practice you attend. It may also be that you could talk to the Patient Advice and Liasion Service (PALS) who offer confidential advice and support on matters that are health related and can help resolve concerns or problems when you’re using the NHS. You can find your nearest PALS office on the link below.

    Patient Advice and Liasion Service (PALS)

    You may also find information from the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society (NRAS) helpful. Their website and Helpline Details are on the link below.

     National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society (NRAS)

    I hope this information is helpful to you.

    Best Wishes