Work difficulties

Hi everyone 

I feel like reality is kicking in at the age of 43.

Saw the rheumatologist in November and been diagnosed with Osteoarthritis mainly in my hands.

Im a district nurse and am struggling to do the clinical side of my job. I’m restricted in my role as I’m no longer allowed to use needles as have stabbed my self a couple of times! I struggle to complete more dexterous skills and feel pretty useless as a clinical nurse! 

I’ve come to the conclusion I need a different role which luckily I can find fairly easily.

I accept bad days are inevitable but they’re so often it’s becoming a real pain. On really bad days I drop everything and I know so many of you can relate.

I’ve been given exercises, take painkillers and use CBD cream. All of which help some.

The OT suggested some natural things to try such as magnesium, turmeric and others I can’t remember. 

I’ll try anything to get more of my hand function back so if you can make any suggestions or drop me some advice I would be so grateful and it might cheer this fed up, down in the dumps nurse blessed with OA up.

Thanks and stay safe ❤️


  • Mike1
    Mike1 Member Posts: 1,992

    First off thanks for keeping going as a nurse, many people would have given up when it became difficult. Anyway hands are one of my problems as well, my thumbs are particularly bad so I wear this type of support rather than compressions gloves

    They lock my thumbs in place, they are available on the NHS through your OT and can be purchased on the internet for around £40. They certainly help me.

  • JoGedling
    JoGedling Member Posts: 2

    Hiya, I have same issues as a nurse but struggling to find different role , I work as care home nurse in private sector and struggle with medication rounds , opening bottles, 'popping' tablets and opening packaging on daily dressings, not sure what to do or where to go , I need to work as main earner by worried how much longer I can go on, do not qualify for and support other than SSP

  • Chris_R
    Chris_R Moderator Posts: 785
    edited 16. Jul 2021, 14:15

    Hi @JoGedling

    Welcome to the online community,I can see you have already met one of our community members @Mike1 so glad you are chatting and getting advice already,i would also say with @Mike1 Its great you are still wanting to Nurse and help others.I was a Nurse aswell but age crept up on me and i had to retire but a retrained as a keep fit instructor for Extend for the over 60s never regretted it just love what i do dispite the arthritis,keep upthe good work.

    I have a link that may help you.

    Exercises for the fingers, hands and wrists | Versus Arthritis

    Hope all goes well keep chatting and please let us know how you get on Christine

    Need more help? - call our Helpline on 0800 5200 520 Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm

  • MoWW
    MoWW Member Posts: 74

    Hi @JoGedling

    It is difficult when you are the main earner and experiences difficulties related to your condition. I have put together a few links to things that that you can consider:

    Would equipment to help with some of these tasks? Could your employer purchase them or you consider applying to Access to Work? Get support in work if you have a disability or health condition (Access to Work) - GOV.UK (

    Is there other roles within the company that you could do and share some of the jobs that you struggle with?

    Are you in a union - what support is available to help you? Disability rights: Employment - GOV.UK (

    Are you registered with NMC or equivalent? The Nursing & Midwifery Council - The Nursing and Midwifery Council ( They may be able to offer support.

    Your skills - updating your CV, consider arranging a careers discussion to explore your options. Career and job support for people with a disability | National Careers Service

    Check with your local job centre Disability Employment Adviser who may be able to signpost you to support. Government unveils new support for disabled jobseekers - GOV.UK (

    Your local welfare advice agency or CAB can offer you advice around benefits, Benefits - Citizens Advice

    Hope this information is of help, please contact me if I can assist further., my contact details are within this link.

    Maureen @MoWW

  • Jona
    Jona Member Posts: 406

    Hi Sasha,

    Its really difficult I was working in the phlebotomy dept at my local hospital and desperately tried to keep doing my job and not give up as I loved it but had to deploy to a desk job as my arthritis is in nearly every bone now and couldn’t cope with the pain any longer so I made the decision to ill health retire and trust me that is not an easy thing to do but I’m much older than you, I did consider working as an assessor at the dwp at least with you having clinical experience and actually having arthritis it could make a difference but I was told it is extremely stressful and that is the last thing I need.

    At the end of the day there’s no easy decision I decided what was best for me turns out being able to take the correct meds and resting when I need to has made a huge difference downside is feeling isolated and missing working.

    Good luck and thank you for being there for people when you were needed

    take care

    Jona 💐💐😊