Rheumatoid Arthritis caught me by surprise!

paulausa Member Posts: 2
edited 28. Nov 2023, 14:07 in Living with arthritis

Recently diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis. It's severe, affecting nearly all joints. Started Methotrexate 2 weeks ago. RF was 573 IU/ML !!

Six months ago I was walking 2-3 miles each day and basically could do any physical activity I desired. Now I own a walker and a shower chair. 😥

Precipitating factor was extreme stress after a one-month long trip to New Mexico and Colorado via RVing.

Unfortunately, there's a shortage of Rheumatologists in my area. I was recently seen by a young Doctor who is new to Rheumatology.

Looking forward to learning what has been helpful for others and sharing what I find helpful.

Thanks in advance, Paula


  • PeterJ
    PeterJ Administrator Posts: 902

    Hello @paulausa and welcome to the community. We are a friendly and supportive group and I hope that you find that as well.

    I understand that you have rheumatoid arthritis affecting most of your joints and are on methotrexate and that your mobility has been badly affected. Our website has a lot of useful information and a good search function. I would suggest having a look around and to help I've put a couple of links in below

    Please do keep posting and let us know how you are getting on and I am sure others will connect with you to share their experiences as well

    With very best wishes


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

  • Yvie
    Yvie Member Posts: 4

    Hi Paula. The diagnosis is always a difficult thing to process so I understand how you feel. I was 40 when I got my with a 2 year old and a 9 year old to care for. Give the medication time to work and make sure you feedback your symptoms to your rheumatologist or nurse practitioner as they can adapt medication to meet your needs. I am now 20 + years with RA and take a biologic drug which is brilliant. I have had a hip replacement at the age of 45 and a new shoulder in 2015 but I play racketball once a week and have done couch25k recently. Being on the right medication is key to everything and having the RA well managed makes a world of difference. Keep positive and listen to your body.

  • Arthuritis
    Arthuritis Member Posts: 445

    @paulausa So sorry to hear. I myself was recently Dx’d, with the prognostic indicator ACCP test off the max the lab could read (500+). This test indicates how bad its going to get. (Bad in my case).

    There was some news item recently indicating a rise in global RA in western countries, implying environmental factors could play a bigger part.

    As Yvie says getting the right med is critical. I started MTX in early Dec, and its only now kicking in.

    Cool “van life” type adventure! Hope you will tell us more, also what to avoid!

  • Bic1982
    Bic1982 Member Posts: 31


    Just want to reiterate what @Yvie said really. Its a tough condition to get use to and can be quite unpredictable so remembering to listen to your body will help you in the long term to figure out what it likes and dislikes now.

    Medication is so important but you need to be upfront with your drs and tell them what is and, more importantly, isn't working for you. Sometime finding our voices in front of the drs early on can be difficult.

    I'm sure you will take it in your stride though!