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05/02/2012 08:26 PM

How long have you had RA

Posts: 371

Just wondering how long have you all had RA.... Since all my blood tests were positive, I asked the doc today how long he thought I have had this and his best guess is 2-3 years. So all winter when both my knees were so bad that I was walking like an 80 year old and living on Motrin. And the shoulder pain I blamed on the ceiling fan, and I was sure that I had some kind of stress fracture or something with my foot since it was hurting and swollen for 3 months... and according to the xrays my right foot is worse then my left, but my left is the one that hurts all the time. go figure. I had a reason for all my aches and pains, and I kept them to myself mostly coz I thought I was nuts, how could one person have so many pains.



05/02/2012 09:23 PM
Posts: 531

Hi Cindy.

You sound like me in wondering why all the aches and pains. My first real sign was late spring, 2009. My husband had made a burn pile for twigs and yard waste and I threw some stuff in -- nothing weighing more than one pound. In other words, I hardly did anything. The next morning I woke up with severe shoulder pain. It got worse as the day went on. It was so weird to think I had injured it with what little I did the day before. After a good 24 hours of pain I couldn't stand it anymore (there was no way to get comfortable at all) and went to the ER. They diagnosed "rotator cuff injury" and sent me home with Vicodin. I was fine a day later. So much for the injury?

Barely two months later, I woke up with so much inflammation and pain in my right wrist that I couldn't use it. I went to the family doctor. She said she suspected "a different kind of arthritis" and gave me a lab script. Well, the Indocin she prescribed worked and I was fine. I blew off the labs.

A month later I awoke with right hip and left ankle hurting so badly I needed help from my husband to get out of bed and go to the bathroom. I thought "this is completely nuts!" I knew nothing about RA, and I was a bit "allergic" to doctors and the whole medical world. But then the wrist again... and the shoulder. So I made an appointment in Jan 2010 with a new doctor in the area where we were moving. In the mean time, I did some research online and decided I probably did have RA. It fit like a glove. It made sense of the weird symptoms.

I too was seropositive... anti-CPP, RF, and I am also ana positive (but do not have Lupus). CRP and ESR both were high. So it was a slam dunk for diagnosis. The second rheumy I saw that July was a winner, and I've been with him since.

We're lucky that the labs revealed the problem right away. Some people struggle with symptoms but don't have the blood markers and thus don't get the treatment they really need for years, even.

I also had what I thought was a stress fracture in my foot. It was back in 2006-2007. And earlier than that... like 2005ish... I was sitting in class and my knee started swelling. It was hot to the touch and red. I went to the ER and they said I probably had gout, but my rheumy said no gout. So I wonder if it didn't stay super mild until 2009. Or something.

I'm curious to hear your theory about stress/illness you may have experienced to "trigger" the illness. I had a severe case of the flu, Thanksgiving 2004. It took a few months to get back to normal after that.

Anyway, nice to meet you! Welcome.

05/02/2012 09:25 PM
Posts: 10912
VIP Member

I was dxed in 2007. It hit me hard and fast. I believe i had it at least a year prior to dx.

The reason your "better" foot hurts worse the the "worse" one is because you favor it.

When I had to choose which knee was to be replaced first I chose the one that hurt the worst. It was the "better" knee.

When I asked doc why it hurt the most he explained I was favoring it. Made sense.


05/03/2012 11:39 AM
Posts: 4072
Group Leader

Even though I was DX in 12-09 I believe I had RA for years earlier. It was hard getting out of bed, but once I got to work I felt much better. I explained away my foot and ankle pain and swelling b/c I stood on my feet all day (retail) After awhile I would leave work with my fingers hurting from typing on the cash register. And b/c they hurt I made more mistakes. What I always thought was funny was that I gave the alarm clock to my husband. Psychologically I did not want to get up, when I was usually a morning person. All this got worse during my menstruation. So bad I called in sick every month. Then came that fateful morning when my hands swelled to twice their size. The Dr did one test and came to tell me the news. He gave me a NSAID and told me to see the RA Dr. After looking around and 3 different Dr's I found a keeper. Now if we can find a Med for me.I'm on MTX, but DR and I feel I need more.

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