Hello, I am new and just want to say hi and have a moan!

Sally10 Member Posts: 3
edited 28. Nov 2023, 14:05 in Living with arthritis

Am in my early fifties. I had an L5 S1 fusion surgery in 2012 following about 10 years of debilitating back pain. Although it didn’t completely resolve my back problems it provided significant relief and life became much more manageable. About 2 years ago I was diagnosed with osteoarthritis in my knee. Most of my pain continues to come from my knee, but my toes and hands also cause me quite a bit of discomfort. I love walking. It has always kept me sane and been my main form of exercise. I am finding it really difficult to accept not being able to walk as much, or as fast, or as far and sometimes not really being able to walk at all. My ability to cope is definitely affected by not being able to sleep properly because of pain. At the moment I try to manage the pain with ibuprofen which I don’t really like taking so much of, but the topical gel doesn’t even touch it. Heading into colder weather definitely makes everything feel worse - so that’s perhaps why I feel especially negative about it all just now.

Really looking forward to sharing experiences and advice from others on here.


  • Shell_H
    Shell_H Member Posts: 548

    Hi @Sally10 and welcome to the online community!

    You've had back surgery a while back and also have been diagnosed with osteoarthritis in your knees, while your hands and feet are also uncomfortable. You miss being able to walk like you used to, being cut back to walking less, more slowly and sometimes not at all. In addition, the pain has kept you awake at night, and you're attempting to manage it with ibuprofen.

    I too have osteoarthritis in my knees, and I miss being able to walk as well. I used to really enjoy going for hikes (although I bet you did it more than me) and now I can't do as much, and I need to be much more careful - if I ever do want to do a long walk I need to be able to recover the following days. It's extremely frustrating. I am now a lot less fit than I used to be, which isn't good for my health either.

    I would suggest that you don't need to dislike taking ibuprofen. It's important to manage your pain properly, and taking a painkiller is a good way to do so. There is nothing wrong with needing to take a painkiller, and many of us rely on them daily. It's not a bad thing - it helps you to have a more "normal" life if you do. I'd also look into paracetamol - it also helps with OA pain, and can be taken safely with ibuprofen. If you time it right, I'd suggest taking both a short while before you go to bed, as they may well help you with being able to get to sleep if you can lessen the pain at the right time.

    Have a look at some of the information we have available, which could help you with coping better. If you can, try doing some gentle exercises, especially to strengthen your knees and other affected joints, as if you can strength en the muscles surrounding those joints then some of the strain is taken off them and the pain becomes better. I've linked some useful information below:

    Have a look around the community and join in. Everyone's extremely friendly and I'm sure you'll find people who understand and can commiserate when needed, and share tips and experience when relevant.

    It's lovely to meet you.


  • Sally10
    Sally10 Member Posts: 3

    Thanks so much Shell. I will definitely give the combination of paracetamol and ibuprofen a try at night time and look forward to exploring and participating in the community,


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