osteoarthritis or Arthritis or Rheumatoid arthritis


Got a call yesterday about my MRI scan consultant nurse said to me that i've "mild arthritis" which has left me confused alot. I'm still experiencing alot of neck,back and hand pain and am at a loss as to what i'm supposed to identify as?

My Symtoms:

Nerve Pain in :

Back / Neck / Hand(felling of wearing gloves and pain across knuckles)


Distrurbed Sleep

wonder if anyone else has experienced something similar?



  • Annj
    Annj Member Posts: 59

    Hi Darko74 and welcome to the forum.

    I was given a similarly vague diagnosis. I understand how frustrating it is when you are looking for answers. I think with so many similar-but-different conditions when it comes to arthritis it is often very hard for people to get a definite diagnosis. Inflammatory forms of arthritis can also go hand-in-hand with other autoimmune disorders, complicating things still further. It can unfortunately sometimes take a long time to get a firm diagnosis.

    You may have read up already on the different forms of arthritis, I'm attaching links to the relevant pages on the Versus Arthritis website as these summaries give a useful comparison between the conditions. I'd definitely recommend keeping a symptom diary so that when you go back for subsequent appointments you can be sure you've remembered everything - it can help your healthcare provider piece together the puzzle.

    Of course we are not qualified to give medical advice or diagnosis on here, but you may find other forum members will be able to provide their own experiences in terms of symptoms and their journey to diagnosis.

    You will also find a wealth of useful past posts on the forum, which you can search on by keyword.

    With best wishes and in the hope that you get some answers as time goes by.


  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 2. Apr 2020, 08:07

    People bandy the word arthritis around thinking they are being specific which they are not. I am no doctor but I do have both an auto-immune and osteo arthritis and there was a clear difference in how they were diagnosed.

    Osteo arthritis is diagnosed after Xrays or even an MRI. GPs deal with it and are also able to diagnose after manipulating the affected joint. The auto-immune varieties also may require an Xray or MRI but they also need blood tests, often many and repeated, to assess what is happening with inflammation in the whole body (OA inflammation is localised). They are only diagnosed by a rheumatologist who has the specific knowledge and, because there are so many kinds, that can take a while.

    As I said I am not a doctor but from what you have described I suspect OA, most probably in your neck, is the root of your troubles. As I understand it OA, unlike the auto-immune kinds, are graded into stages with Stage 1 being mild, the term used to describe yours. I plunged into depression when my OA was diagnosed in 2011, Ithought I had ticked the arthritis box when the other began in 1997 (finally diagnosed in 2006). To this day I deal with the OA beast by rest, pain relief, exercise and with both beasts with a small dose of an anti-depressant.

    I think it would be helpful for you to have a chat with your GP about pain relief etc. but at these challenging times I know this is easier said than done. Good luck and please let us know how you get on. DD

    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • Darko74
    Darko74 Member Posts: 8

    Thanks Ann!

  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520

    I apologise for not listing some of the auto-immune kinds for extra clarification. There is rheumatoid, psoriatic, ankylosing spondylitis, palendromic rheumatism and reactive arthritis. These require treatment with immune-suppressing medication unlike osteoarthritis. DD

    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben