I am new to arthritis. I was diagnosed 6 months ago after a scan and xray of a few nodules on my finger joints. Spurs were identified, and it was diagnosed as osteoarthritis. After that for 2 months, there was an alarmingly rapid development of painful nodules on all the joints of both hands, wrists and feet. The fingers swelled and stiffened. I was told by video appointment that this was a 'flare up' and was sent support bandages for my wrists. Although the swelling stayed, the pain went down. I do a manual job, and play a musical instrument that requires fast finger movement, so this is a concern.
In the past week, my fingers, then wrists and feet swelled painfully at the joints (but not hot and red), followed in a few days by painful hips, knees, shoulders, elbows and now lower back. I am determined to remain active, and have walked and worked daily, but I am so stiff that even ignoring the pain, it is almost impossible to put socks on. The next day, my face swelled, which is s common allergic reaction for me, food related, except that I am sure that I have not eaten any trigger foods. From then on, nothing more has developed, and the hands are easing slightly.
The GP has denied any possibility of rheumatoid arthritis, or any other autoimmune condition (even allergies, even though I have had a lifelong reaction to milk with facial swelling followed by excema). I am interested if anyone thinks there is a chance that I have rheumatoid arthritis, in which case should I be dealing with it any differently? I have a high pain tolerance, and am very active, but I do not wish to do anything that might make things worse. I feel that I cannot go back to the GP having already asked about it 6 months ago, so would like some ideas on how to deal with this as it is hard coping.
I have fought for over 20 years to finally get a diagnosis of psoriatic arthritis, I've suffered from a young teenager with my knees and in the last 20 years my spine and hips. Don't give up, go back and see a different Dr and insist on a referral as bloods don't always show the problem as I have found out. I went when I had a really bad day and burst into tears with the pain as I just couldn't cope that day. That was when they referred me. My consultant couldn't believe I'd been left for so long! On this website there is a helpline it might be worth ringing them and asking for support.
Hope this helps0
jamieA Member Posts: 485
I think you need see a different GP if that's possible - or demand a more thorough investigation of your symptoms from the one you've seen. In my experience over the last 3 years - when I've had more need to access medics than in the 64 years previously - I've found that I need to be more forceful and less of a passenger in my treatment.
A GP is simply that - a general practitioner - not a specialist. My recent experience of a GP at my surgery tends to bear that out where the GP stated that he'd never heard of a known side effect of one of my heart drugs that had caused my cardiac consultant to change my prescription. When the drug I changed to caused a different side effect the GP said he'd never heard of that side effect either - despite it being listed on the patient leaflet - and he prescribed me an additional drug gabapentin to add to my intake. I had to go back to my consultant and ask him to change the drug again which he did immediately.0
I am glad you have found this online community, and I hope that you get more comments on your post. There is a lot of information on the Versus Arthritis website, which you may find helpful.
This page on osteoarthritis is a good starting point:
Do let us know how you get on, and by all means come back is we can help further.
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