Hi I'm new here. I was diagnosed with RA 10+ yrs ago around the same time I started menopause.

I fell extremly fatigued all the time. My RA pain is manageble.But brain fog and tiredness is impacting my life so much. I have ask my rheumy on many ocasions if there's anything that can help she says HRT would make the RA worse or that this should be discussed with my GP.

My Gp tells me that it should be discussed with the Rheumataologist I have bee tooing and throwing like this for at least a couple of years. I just don't know where to turn. Meanwhile I feel myself going more and more downhill.

Does anyone out there have any advice as to who I should speak to?what should I be asking for treatment wise?



  • Anna
    Anna Moderator Posts: 874

    Hello @Samka and welcome to the online community,

    I understand you have been experiencing extreme fatigue and brain fog after your diagnosis of RA which happened around the same time as your menopause 10 years ago. Unfortunately, both conditions can cause fatigue and brain fog and it’s a shame that you don’t feel you’re getting the right support from your Rheumatologist or your GP. I’m sure that many of our members can identify with what you’re going through, and hopefully they will post some suggestions that will help.

    There have been several posts from members about dealing with fatigue - here’s a thread that might help:

    Versus Arthritis has some useful information too - I’ve linked to it below. It outlines some of the reasons for fatigue, including vitamin deficiency or a side effect of the medications you are on. It might be worth asking your GP about this - the article also suggests some ways that may help you talk to them about how you’re feeling. It also gives some ideas on how you can help yourself.

    Do let us know how you’re getting on,

    Anna ( Moderator)

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

  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,608

    I managed to virtually skip the menopause. I don't really know how except that probably the chemotherapy I was having for breast cancer probably speeded up the whole process.

    You don't say which DMARDS you're on or whether your rheumatologist is happy with your blood tests. Fatigue and pain are symptoms of RA. Is yours under control?

    I think the jury's out on HRT with RA. It seems the additional oestragen it provides could help but the disadvantages of HRT can be more damaging to RA patients which is possibly why your rheumatologist refers you back to your GP who would be the one dealing with them. Maybe read this and then decide what questions you want to ask of both GP and consultant.

    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright
  • wendy19
    wendy19 Member Posts: 12

    Hi Samka

    I am recently diagnosed, within the last month so I am only just starting medication. However, I have been on Estrogel Gel for the Menopause for the last 4 years and they haven't told me to stop using it. So, if it was me I would look into all the HRT options that would be open to you and go to the GP. From what I have learned from the specialist team that the GP deals with everything else, but it would then be worth discussing the medication suggested with them. As this effects lots of women you cannot be the first to ask about this.

  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 29,032

    I am not able to take HRT anyway due to migraines with aura and having up to 28 hot flushes at night at it's peak.

    Maybe take @wendy19 's advice and try to be persistent. Some areas have menopause 'experts' rather than just getting 'stuck' at the GP level???

    Take care and ((()))

    Toni x

  • Weeyin
    Weeyin Member Posts: 10

    I've had PA for 25 years. Started HRT last year, doc was unhappy with my blood pressure last time, so changed it to patches as they are safer. Managing fine with them, mo hot flushes. I still get brain fog although l think this is mostly down to PA as fatigue is pretty bad. Getting a good sleep helps manage pain better