My Story And Rheumatoid

At first i thought i had the flu, because i ached all over
but it went on far to long for it to be the flu,i was tired
all the time.I had no energy and all i kept doing was falling
asleep.I was working at the time in a shop part time
I kept getting pains in all parts of my body
one day it would be in my shoulder, and another time ,
my elbow or knee, i even had a pain in my jaw
This went on for quite a while. I went into work one day
and i over heard one of the women say... I wonder whats
wrong with her today.So hearing that didnt make me feel
any better, i thought...they all think i am making it up.
Well i must admit i suppose i would have thought the same
if i had been them.my friend kept telling me to go to the doctors
but to be honest with you i thought , if i say to the doctor
i got pain and it moves around my body he is going to think
i am a hypochondriac so i left it for nearly one year
it was only when i woke up one morning and i had the most
terrible pain in my right hand, that i decided to go to the doctor
I still had no idea what it was, i just thought i had sprained it
Any way i didnt have an appointment so i had to wait to see a
doctor.I still never mentioned about the pains i was getting all over
me, i just said about my hand.He looked at my hand and felt around
my knuckle joints, they were so swollen i couldnt move my hand
The doctor thought it might be arthritis so he sent me for a blood test
He gave me some pills to take and said to rest it ,I tell you it was agony
any way iwent back the following week to get the results from the blood
test . MY doctor told me that i had the rheumatoid factor in my blood.
well i didnt know what it meant,Then the doctor said i am sorry to say but
you have got rheumatoid arthritis.It was then i said about all the other
pains i had been getting, The doctor said it would be best to see the
rheumatoligist at the hospital, so an appointment was made for me
I still didnt really know much about rheumatoid arthritis, and i must
admit I thought i cant have arthritis...thats what old people get!!!
By the time my appointment came round to see the rheumatologist
i had pain in my other hand and my shoulder, that first visit was a
nightmare....He gave me three steroid injections into my joints, my
shoulder, and my knuckles.It was agony, i could have cried .He put me
on anti-inflammatory pills.and i had to go back to see him in three months
time.My hands were still swollen , it was like i had a sausage on my
knuckles.I had pain in my feet, i really felt rotten, he prescribed higher
dose of anti-infammatory drugs, pain killers, and a drug called methotrexate
which suppresses the immune system
and because it is a toxic drug i have to have monthly blood tests
Within my first year of being diagnosed i had a flare up....Now i didnt
know what this was I just woke up one morning and i could not move
My husband had to help me get out of bed to use the toilet, he had to help,
me on and off the toilet, i thought i was going to die
all the glands in my throat was swollen.i wouldnt let my
husband call the doctor, (i now know i should have)
I stayed in bed like that for three days
I never went out for three weeks after that, until i had to go down the
doctors to ask if he could make me an earlier appointment to
see the rheumatologist because my knee was very swollen and painful
The doctor said there was no need as he would give me a steroid
injection into the knee joint.I got told off for not calling the doctor out
when i had the flare up.any way after a few days the swelling went down.

It would take me a while in the mornings to get going,i was
stiff and in pain. Getting up and down the stairs was
difficult, i found it easier to go up the stairs on all fours.In the second
year of the rheumatoid arthritis
The medication seemed to help get the Ra under control

Any way i have had knuckle joint replacement in both of my hands
and i have had a hip replacement a few months ago. I have had RA
for ten years now,i have good days and bad days,but i try and
get on with life, because i cant change anything about my condition.
I am much better in the summer months than i am in the winter
i hope i have not bored you to much.

Rita