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Struggling to get diagnosis!

DonnylassDonnylass Posts: 3
edited 6. Oct 2020, 09:38 in Living with arthritis

I have been unwell for years. I'm 49. Had lots of scans,blood tests,nerve tests,bone density scans etc Waiting to have a face to face appointment with G.P tomorrow. My M Antibodies are raised.My son has psoriatic arthritis and so does my dad. I have felt fatigued for years and started with joint pain in my thumbs, toes,knees and back. I recently had a stress fracture to my foot which has not properly healed after 3 months. I have also had a red sore area for months under my eye which has not improved after 6 different sorts of antibiotics, I bruise easily and it takes ages to go. Suffering with chronic constipation and headaches. Very sleepy most of the day. Hoping for some answers tomorrow. However, still waiting to see a rheumatologist.


  • Chris_RChris_R Posts: 168 mod
    edited 25. Sep 2020, 17:57

    Hi @Donnylass

    Welcome to the Arthritis Community its great you have found us,

    You sound as if you are really going through the mill at the moment and I can understand your level of anxiety must be quite high.You say you are going to see your GP tomorrow where you hope you will get some answers to what you are going through.Your GP will hopefully refer you to a Rhumatologist for a proper diagnosis.

    Meanwhile I am giving you a link for general information on Arthritis for you to look at.https://www.bing.com/search?q=define+rheumatoid+arthritis+vs+osteoarthritis&FORM=QSRE5

    Hope this is helpful to you, all the best for tomorrow, please let us know how you get on.

    Meanwhile take a look at the forums and chat to others who go through similar diagnosis


  • Thanks for the info Christine. Dr was not very helpful. Examined my hands, knees and feet. Bloods normal except the M antibodies. He did refer me to the rheumatologist though.

  • Chris_RChris_R Posts: 168 mod

    Hi @Donnylass

    Thanks for getting back to us,its a shame that your GP was not helpful but at least you will get to see a Rheumatologist for diagnosis.

    So glad the information was helpful.

    Hope you will continue to chat with others on the forums.

    Take care and all the best,keep in touch Christine

  • LilymaryLilymary Posts: 530 ✭✭✭

    I hope you get to see the rheumatologist soon, and that this is helpful. It’s a step in the right direction, GPs can’t diagnose an treat everything. Sometimes it takes a specialist,

  • frogmortonfrogmorton Posts: 25,777 ✭✭✭

    Diagnosis is 9ne area which has always been a problem. Much easier if something is nicely visible on a scan or your bloods show something 'useful'🙄

    I hope your rheumatologist apt comes through quickly. In the meantime do feel free to ask us lot questions if we can help we will.

    Take care


    Toni xxx
  • stickywicketstickywicket Posts: 25,975 ✭✭✭

    Unfortunately, all outpatients appointments have suffered with Covid19. Do you actually have a rheumatology appointment booked? I hope, when it happens, it will be beneficial.

    Meanwhile, the constipation and possibly the headaches might be caused by pain relief. Co-codamol, tramadol etc. Basically, anything that helps also constipates. Prunes and dates are good to counteract that. Also, paracetamol can actually cause headaches if taken for long periods.

    It's a funny old world. Do let us know how you get on.

    “There is always a well-known solution to every human problem - neat, plausible, and wrong.” H.L. Mencken
  • dij1966dij1966 Posts: 22

    Hi Donnylass, sorry to hear you are going through a difficult time. I have been to the doctors twice and just been given painkillers and sent on my way. I have now manged to get an appointment to see a rheumatologist in 3 weeks time. I am worrying he will do the same and say its joint pain. I know its more that that. I am currently making notes of a the things I am struggling with. I feel I need a marker pen to put a dot on the joints I feel pain and need to mention. Hope your appointment comes through soon.

  • Hi...well, I've had my blood results, all normal, just waiting to see rheumatologist next week. My question is, is this normal that tests can come back OK, but you still have arthritis. In a way I really wanted something to show up in my tests so I could say 'see, that is why i am in so much pain' I know I am jumping the gun a bit, but if the rheumatologist says everything is fine, where do I go from there? Any advice would be greatly appreciated at this stage. Xx

  • frogmortonfrogmorton Posts: 25,777 ✭✭✭

    Absolutely you can have arthritis and 'normal' blood results @dij1966

    Some forms are what they call seronegative like psoriatic arthritis for example.

    My suggestion is to write down bullet points your symptoms nice and clear and succinct.

    What happens, when and for how long ie. any joint stiffness or pain - after rest or after exercise. What helps? Heat/ice/movement/rest etc Any other obscure things like a slight fever or rash that happens.

    then how it is affecting you. Maybe inability to exercise or stand for long periods maybe driving or your work.

    If at all possible (and with COVID I suspect not) have someone with you. It helps.

    Let us know how you get on


    Toni xxx
  • Thank you frogmorton for your reply. I have started a list! I have added everything regarding how I have been/ am feeling. I know from having brain fog from previous meds your mind always goes blank when you are sat in the room with a doctor, yet you remember when you get back home!

    Not sure what I was expecting, but after working my way through this site I now realise its not going to go away and its about how you manage with it. I thought with the right diagnosis and meds I would be skipping down the street! Feel a bit silly really but this is all new to me. Xx

  • frogmortonfrogmorton Posts: 25,777 ✭✭✭

    No not silly @dij1966

    Totally understandable it all being new. I was lucky as a friend of a friend was diagnosed about a month before me and she said. "It's not like you take a course of antibiotics or take a paracetamol for a headache and it will be cured, you'll be on tablets for life" So my expectations weren't that high! Mine was a sero-negative type of arthritis although my bloods did show high 'inflammatory markers' and the GP had seen my joints swollen and stuck in position. Started out calling it palindromic rheumatism then later they called it RA.

    No use worrying now it will just make you feel awful (me saying that - the biggest worrier out!) and won't change the outcome.

    Just take your time and and do your list - if you are allowed take someone in for support. Oh and the lady I mentioned? Her bloods were negative at the GP but oddly positive at the rheumatologists🙄 No idea why.

    Take care and do remember to let us know how you get on


    Toni xxx
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