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Joint Pain, Swelling, Fatigue
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Joint Pain, Swelling, Fatigue

I am seventeen years old.

Over the past several months (probably since late October or early November,) I've been having severe joint pain and swelling, accompanied by chronic fatigue, headaches, limited range in movement, and occasional fever and/or nausea. I also have a very hard time sleeping, and have experienced what feel like heart palpitations, or racing of the heart at completely sporadic  times. I've been to the doctor four times for this, and two rounds of bloodwork have been done. The first round came back negative for Lyme, Lupus, Thyroid disease, Arthritis, Fibromyalgia and other similar disorders. I am awaiting the results of the second round of bloodwork, but even as I type, I am in extreme discomfort, and am very tired, after even 9 hours of sleep on a regular sleeping schedule.

About a week before this began, I came down with a bad virus that included vomiting, a high fever, and a strange rash all over my body. It lasted only a few days, and  the rash subsided around the time that my symptoms started. Doctors initially thought that this onset of symptoms was caused by this virus, but it is February now, and they say it has gone on too long to be viral. I have an appointment with a Rheumatologist on Thursday the 22nd of February, and I hope he will be able to enlighten me as to what it is I have. This constant discomfort is getting old...I feel like a 70 year old woman, and I'm only 17.

Does anyone have any ideas on what this might be? Does bloodwork for diseases like Lupus and Lyme often come back negative when in fact a person has the disease? I would really appreciate some input, as the doctors seem to have no idea what's going on.

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12 Comments Post a Comment
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394687_tn?1290924440
Sounds like RA to me - it took them 4 months to figure mine out. Sometime the RA factor test is negative at first. It is probably what they call Juvinal Rheumatoid Arthritis due to your age. They jave some pretty good drugs these days - I'm on Enbrel - it's great

Get a good Rheumatolgist - good luck
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Avatar_m_tn
hey im having alot of the same problems u are, im a 17 year old male and i have alot of pain in my wrists and back and neck. i have alot of cracking in my joints and it causes pain all over my body. do u feel sharp pains shoot through ur stomach alot? i feel it all the time and the doctors cant seem to find out whats wrong with me either. i know how u feel, trust me.
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Avatar_n_tn
I am in a very similar situation to you, but I'm 32, but feel like I'm 82! Since the beginning of October I've had a fever (anywhere from 99.5-102, everyday), joint pain and extreme fatigue. Doctors have done a ton of blood tests and have said I have mono and parvovirus B19.  I've had several rounds of tests run and seen my normal doc, an infectious disease doc (which said it was all allergies!) and a rheumatologist. The rheumatologist has ruled out RA and lupus and is now sending me to the university hospital a few hours away b/c she knows it's something more than just the mono and parvo, but doesn't know what.

What did your rheumatologist say?
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Avatar_n_tn
Can i join the club? I'm a 17 year old female also but i've had these same symptoms since i was 13. yes it sucks. Heart racing, short breathing, joint swelling, redness around your joints, limited movement, CONSTANT pain and discomfort, acheing, fatigue, SO tired all the time, no sleep, anxiety, stiffness......so much more.... This condition must be horribly unhealthy because we cant get excersice LOL   ...I was diagnosed with Erlos Danlos Syndrom (syndrome)..Its like...all your joints and ligaments are  too stretchy and loose that all your muscles and bones actually have to make up for what your ligaments arent doing to hold your joints in place. and yes. it causes sever discomfort. and it doesnt show on blood tests.  Test yourself. See how far you can bend your fingers, how low you can limbo, pop things out of joint? thats a def. of EDS. Good Luck, but don't brake anything! maybe i'm the only one who can bend into a pretzel.
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Avatar_n_tn
I like to join this thread , i am having similar symptoms for last 2 years  and now from past 2 months it is being horrible . Just start some background i was diagnosed Hypothyroid last 2 years back since then struggling with all kind of symptoms . My level is normal , my doctor ran all kind of test all came back negative accept thyroid antibody.
RA negative , Lupus negative  and others too.
Please keep me in loop for any solution you find for joint and muscles ache issue.
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Avatar_f_tn
after weeks on the net, your symptoms sound the closest to mine, after blood test, x rays etc, all they can find is borderline RA, and one of the test for autoantibody came back as 'inbetween', i thought that i had swollen lymph nodes (which i did for months) but when Dr checked today he said they weren't swollen? baffled me as the pain there is awful, (back of neck and groin) he's refered me to the rheumatologist, but i'm left feeling a bit baffled? my ankles and knees are the most painful, my shoulders are painful in the morning and i feel like i'm 100 years old! i also get palpitations and shortness of breath? i know nothing about RA but i'm constantly fatigued and need to sit down and rest several times a day (i get very hot too) no night sweats though, otherwise i'm not overweight, dont smoke or even drink! this has been ongoing since last october and i have had every single cold/sickness bug etc going, i suffer constant sore throats too, but been tested for glandular fever etc and all clear.  i'm puzzled by the groin pain, although i was diagnosed with symphasis pubis dysfunction when i was pregnant and was pretty crippled with that. please post if you have any advice and keep me posted on your updates and developments.
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Avatar_f_tn
I too have suffered from many of these same symptoms.  I have gone through many tests again.  I have had this for at least 4 years and have not gotten answers yet.  Nothing in my blood comes back out of the "norm" that inflammation markers that have been high for the consistent 4 years.  Very frustrating!
Has anyone been test for celiac disease?  I have had that for most of my life and now they are telling me that it my be part of that.  Otherwise they are thinking Crohn's, which takes 7 years to show up in any tests.  Anyone been tested for that?  Also get your Vitamin D checked.  Mine was very very low!  
I have been to a neurologist, rhuematologist and infectious disease doctor (to rule out lyme disease).  I tried to get into Mayo clinic to get answers.  I am on a waiting list and might get in in October or November.  It's 4-7 days of appointments.  I don't live close enough to drive back and forth but might get answers, might not.  No longer do I have faith in a diagnosis.
I have turned to alternative therapies which seem to make a world of different.  Chiropractics, hands on healing (moving of energy - kind of like acupuncture without the needles), a great line of vitamin & minerals (not something you can buy in the store), gluten free diet and organic (as much as possible).  It costs a lot but how much is ones health and daily living worth?  I am close to gaining my life back!  Darn doctors, they just can't figure it out.  I told them I just want a diagnosis, not a drug.  I will not put another chemical in my body unless absolutely needed.  My body is toxic from them not knowing what they are doing and guessing.
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Avatar_n_tn
My thoughts are with everyone here. I too have suffered with joint pain and fatigue. My doctor diagnosed me with a viral infection which could take 4-6 weeks to clear up, which seems to be the case since all tests came back normal and the symptoms are finally subsiding now at week 5.

Besides RA there are MANY insect borne bacterial infections and viruses to consider. Many viruses out there have no treatment and cause months and sometimes years of pain in joints. Some people have no other symptoms than fatigue, swelling and joint pain, some have fever... some have nausea and headaches.

If you have traveled to another region via plane or cruise ship, or any other means you may have been bit by a bug which doctors may not test for in standard blood tests in your country of origin. Make sure to inform your doctor if you have traveled and where exactly you have traveled, so that you can be tested for possible insect borne illnesses. Even in places like Italy, mosquitos can transmit viruses that are not commonly tested for in places like the USA. Also places like Southern Florida mosquitos borne illnesses, common to other parts of the world, are starting to crop up due to their hospitable climate for tropical insects and people traveling to and from there.

If you have traveled check out the CDC website and see if your symptoms fit a known disease and be sure to inform your doctor, so that you can be tested.
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Avatar_n_tn
I would like to ask if anyone one had their Antistreptolysin O (ASO) tested.  I had the same symptoms and my doctor tested my ASO which came back high.  She  gave me antibiotics and I felt great after finishing the antibiotics.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hey everyone im 20 years old and i have been suffering from joint and other pain for about 2mounths now i have been in and out of the hospital and they havent found anything wrong . they have perscribed me with pain medicine and immflametory pills and neither has worked ,,,

it started with both my knees swelling up really bad to the point where it hurt to walk or hurt to stretch i tryed icying it but that only helped but so much . then i began to have bad pain on both my elbows and it swelled up as well . it seemed like i was becoming an old lady already i couldnt really walk far distanceS  without my knees swelling up or i couldnt carrying heavy things without my elbows hurting i hear a poping noise some times when i bend my legs or arms and it shoots sharp pains . Now my neck has a lump wich looks like its swollen and i keep having a headach and the pain shoots down my spin . i dont know what to do i feel like i have to many things going wrong that the doctors think im lying but this is really whats wrong . they think it may be RA but all my test come out normal and im still in pain ..... this summer for me has been stuck in the house taking iburoprofin 600 or 800 everyday and nothing is helping im getting scared ,,

SOME ONE PLEASE TELL ME IF ANYTHING SIMILAR HAS HAPPEND TO YOU .....
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Avatar_f_tn
HI MY NAMES KARLENE IM 28 AND 4  3 WEEKS NOW I HAVE BEEN IN PAIN,MY RIGHT FOOT AS SWOLLEN ALOT & IS VERY PAINFUL. MY LEFT LEG HURTS ONLY WHEN WALKING.I WENT 2 C MY DOCTOR AS 5 FAMILIY MEMBERS HAVE RA AND I THOUGHT IT CUD BE THAT.THE DOC SEEMS 2 THINK IVE TWISTED MY FOOT WITHOUT REALIZING IT!! IM IN SO MUCH PAIN I FEEL SO OLD,I CANT EVEN WAKE UP IN THE MORNING AND GET STRAIGHT OUT OF BED AS ALL MY JOINTS HURT FIRST THING.MY LEFT WRIST IS STARTING 2 HURT,FEEL LIKE NO 1 BELIEVES ME WHEN IM SAYING MY BODY HURTS.IM SO  SCARED IVE GOT 3 KIDS 2 LOOK AFTER.
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1193998_tn?1265121197
If I were you I'd insist on a referral to a rheumatologist just to make sure, especially given your family history. There's absolutely no reason to live in pain.

You are your own best health advocate. If a doctor isn't listening to you, find another doctor! There's no law that says you have to stick with one doc. YOU know something is wrong with your body - listen to the signals your body is sending you, and dig in your heels until you get the help you need.

It honestly doesn't matter what anyone else says or thinks. Hold your head high and get treated. As you probably know, the sooner you start treatment the quicker you'll find the meds that work for you.
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