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11/21/2009 08:23 PM

red, swollen, hot knees

lmnm
lmnm  
Posts: 27
Member

Lately I've had problems with my knee. It has mostly been my right knee, but my left just recently started doing it too. First my thigh starts burning, then I look at my leg and realize the knee is red. Then I realize it's swollen and is REALLY hot to the touch. It happened a handful of times this fall, but I didn't think much of it because I didn't realize pay attention to the knee. Last weekend I was shopping with my mom and it happened, so I showed it to her (she was the one who noted the swelling and heat in the knee) and then continued shopping until the knee started protesting enough to make me stop. In the past week it's happened a lot, and there's been some pain as well. Yesterday I was out and I felt a similar thing in my upper arm and my mom said the elbow looked swollen. Last night the elbow felt heated again, and knee swelled, went more normal, swelled again. Today there hasn't been too much heat, but there has been some pain in the knee when using it, and then my hip and ankle in the same leg hurt, I think I was messing them up as a result of trying to compensate for my knee.

Normally I've only felt the burning thigh while wearing pants, I change to a skirt and it lets the heat escape. Today I was wearing a skirt and both thighs started doing it. Then both knees were swollen.

Some (probably unrelated) background: Several years ago when I was around 11-12 I had knee pain and had to go to an orthopedist (I think that's the right word, a bone doctor) who examined be for a few minutes and said it was because my hips were to open and pointed out, so my knees point in and ankles point out. As a result the knees are stressed more than normal. He also said that this was made much worse by tight muscles in my lower leg, so he gave me exercises to do. The problems went away, but show up occasionally, mostly if I'm doing something particularly hard on them.

So I guess I was wondering if other people had had similar problems. I had wanted to ask if people thought I could wait until my already scheduled appointment with my rhuemy, but it's gotten a lot worse (daily) in the past week. I'm going to try to get in to see before Thanksgiving. I'm sorry for the rambling, I can normally write coherently. If anything's unclear let me know.

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11/22/2009 10:35 AM
rmm164
rmm164  
Posts: 2316
VIP Member

You didn't ramble, it was written just fine. My dad has Rheumatoid Arthritis and his joints swell, get red and are hot but they don't do it and then stop doing it quickly like you say yours do. But I wonder, have you been tested for RA? Your probably have if you've been diagnosed with Sjogren's. Joint pain and inflamation is also a symptome of Sjogren's but I've never heard it described like you described it.

I think if I were you I'd try to get seen by a dr. soon since it seems to be getting worse quickly. Just to see if they can figure it out quickly and get it treated quickly.

Maybe someone else will have better info and advice for you. I hope you feel better soon.


11/23/2009 08:42 PM
bearlie
bearlie  
Posts: 1517
VIP Member

I have knees that puff up and sometimes feel they are wrapped tight. I had thought i just had osteo arthritis (which i do have) but found that the puffing up is RA. Are any other joints bothering you besides the knees?? Mine started with my ankles but my GP didn't sent me to a rheumy til i had 2 sets of joints and a pos blood test.

11/24/2009 09:08 PM
lmnm
lmnm  
Posts: 27
Member

Well, I went to the rheumy today. They were normal for her, but I'd brought photos. She wants to test for a few things, including Lyme. One of the nurses there went to draw the blood but couldn't get it out of me (my blood pressure was higher than normal, so it wasn't that). The second nurse who tried still couldn't. Nor the third. Anyway, they gave me some arm warmers and told me come back in a few days after my arms have healed from the pricks.

11/25/2009 10:42 AM
bearlie
bearlie  
Posts: 1517
VIP Member

They've started pulling blood from the back of my hands. I don't particularly like that but whatever works. They say my veins have started rolling and that they're smaller so my hands work better. i don't know what problem they were having trying to pull blood from your arms but i hope they get it figured out.

11/25/2009 01:39 PM
rmm164
rmm164  
Posts: 2316
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Lmnm, it never fails, you always feel better when you go to the dr. Even one of my drs. says that. I'm glad you had taken pictures, though, I would have never thought of that.

I can't believe they sent you home and told you to come back later to get your blood work done, that's crazy. They take mine from the back of the hand and even sometimes from my wrist but they do get it. Mine roll and just fizzle out and all kinds of problems.


11/25/2009 11:49 PM
Sonni
Sonni  
Posts: 1960
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I'm an Advocate

Hi Lmnm,

I can understand why they told you to go home, relax and heal a bit. This happens to me a lot. My veins roll, collapse, flash and boom nothing. Arms, wrists, hands they've tried everything and when I was asked how much water I had to drink...Whoops that was the problem. Now I drink water even while they're taking the test, if necessary.

Could it be that you didn't have enough water to drink that day? I've been told that when I have even a fasting blood test, I can drink all of the water I need because it helps keep the veins hydrated.


11/27/2009 12:35 PM
lmnm
lmnm  
Posts: 27
Member

Well I went back this morning and they got it on the first try. I'd made certain to drink a lot before hand, and they had given me chemical warmers for my hands and arms to put on before coming in. They're only ten minutes from my house, and there was no wait either time, so it's not too bad.

Sonni, I think you're right that relaxing was definitely needed. I'm fine with needles as long as they aren't in me (or going to be in me). I had a really bad experience as a kid with having blood drawn from my hand. Anyway, so on Tuesday I was okay the first time the stuck me and missed the vein, and the second, but after that my stress levels just rose with each attempt and by the end I was pretty close to freaking out (now that I know it's a real likely hood that they'll have trouble drawing in the future I'll probably be able to handle it a lot better, I just don't deal well with surprises). They did get the vein eventually on Tuesday, but couldn't get the blood out.

Anyway, now I just need to wait for the results. The doctor didn't think it was RA, maybe lyme or a reaction to strep throat (I had a bad case about a month and a half ago). Both of those are pretty treatable, so that's good.


11/27/2009 12:58 PM
bearlie
bearlie  
Posts: 1517
VIP Member

I hope you don't have RA. It can be pretty miserable.

11/28/2009 11:08 PM
Sonni
Sonni  
Posts: 1960
VIP Member
I'm an Advocate

Good For You Lmnm!

I'm happy you were able to get your blood draw done. I agree with bearlie, pain of any kind is horrific but RA can be disabling. I wouldn't wish that on anyone...

Please let us know your test results...

Praying for you,

Sonni

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