Arthritis and worried about my job.

Hello everyone,
I am so glad I have found this forum. I will try and keep my “story” short and sweet but I am after some reassurance or maybe I need a more realistic outlook.

I am currently being treated for what GP believes is Psoriatic Arthritis. I have suffered with Psoriasis and very mild back pain for years but never thought much of it. However, I have just had a 1 week bad flare up of severe lower back and hip pain. I’m 27 and unfortunately just been through a stressful break-up which I feel is why this has struck worse at the moment.

I am on Celecoxib which seems to be working, or the flare up has naturally subsided.

My main concern is my job, I am a Police Officer and everything I read says how debilitating the condition can be. Is there anybody else that has an active job that has been able to manage?
I love my job and couldn’t think of anything worse than not being able to continue something I love so much.

Thanks in advance.


  • AlanM
    AlanM Member Posts: 46

    Hi @Nicolejackson9395

    and welcome to the forum. It's good to have you here.

    You have a possible diagnosis of psoriatic arthritis, experience back pain but have had a recent flare up (with severe lower back and hip pain), which has left you worried about the possible implications for your job.

    Firstly, it's important to recognise that the issues you're facing are shared by many people, including people on this forum, whether they are police officers, paramedics, teachers, shop workers or even sportspeople.

    There are great information resources on our website, which are worth having a look at.

    Understanding your condition will not only help you manage it but will help in any of those conversations you may need to have with colleagues to ensure that they can give you the support you need when you need it.

    And if you need to discuss issues more fully, our Helpline staff are here to help. They are available Mon-Fri, 9am-8pm on 0800 5200 520.

    Good luck (and thank you for all the work you and your colleagues do to keep us safe) and look forward to seeing you here on the forum.

    Best wishes


  • Lilymary
    Lilymary Member Posts: 1,742

    Hi Nicole. Thanks for being a police officer, It's a tough job, and gets little respect or gratitude as it did in past years.

    I'm sorry to hear about your break up. I tend to find if I'm stressed, it does set off my OA (and sundry other pains) more, and my physio would say that's because all your muscles tense up and that stresses the joints. I really do find my emotional state has a massive effect on me physically, so you're right, your flare up may well have been affected, if only in part, by your personal life.

    My job is very physical too, I work obliquely in the construction industry, so this can involve scambling up scaffolds and ladders and up in roof voids, and being on my feet all day. I'm lucky as I'm self employed so I can choose what I take on to some extent, it probably isn't so easy for you. If I know I've got a physically demanding day coming up, I rest up as much as possible beforehand so that I'm not fighting too much inflammation, and load up on painkillers before I set off. ((luckily they don't seem to fog my brain too much). I then cosset myself when I get home, to allow things to start settling down again, although they're never completely gone.

    The Police are, I believe, responsible employers who may be willing to review the type of work they send you out on, being on the beat all day or policing events sounds like it would be much harder than say family liaison etc.

    Meanwhile, try to work on your mental well being as well. Try relaxation techniques, gentle exercise, do things that you love (eg walks in countryside, a bit of light gardening, craftwork, photography, dog/cat/hamster cuddling etc) which will help you feel better in yourself, and a bit of light exercise will also help to ease out those knotted muscles. Be kind yourself, and treat yourself as someone who needs cossetting, because whatever you or other people think, you are worth it, and it will help.