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PLS if u have or know about RA I need you support, info. All symptoms say RA but waitng on test. Sudden onset. Severe joint, muscle pain, swelling, fatigue, pain worst when getting up. Medication problems! Please help!

I got out of bed last week almost unable to stand, but after a few mins I worked it out. Within the next few days my joints became painful and some of them stiff in swollen. I started to notice that noises seemed too loud and wore earplugs for two day. That is improving. I also have lower back, neck, shuolder and a mild headache- allof which come and go. My upper right abdomen is sore at times and is also underneath the rib cage in that area. There is a lot of pollen out now so the following could be unrelated: I've noticed my eyes being dry often, but not mouth. I am having chest and back pain but it really feels like my lungs are hurting (upper left back, sternum) I also have swollen lymph glands but my white blood cells werre normal. Sometimes when I take a deep breath the inspiration is stopped by pain. I have severe fatigue and run out of breath easy.

All of this started last week and I am a very healthy, active person. My vitals were normal except high pulse rate 108 bpm?) the doc thinks it's RA and I will find out in a few days. The thing about the pain being sooo much worse after resting a bit or sleeping then improving with motion seems to go with that dx also.  I have faced many things in my life and if I do have this then I will get through. And getting on this board for support and understanding is the 1st thing.  

If you could, would you share with me if your first flare had symptoms like these and what is the best way to manage them. Does it come in flares? Would I still be able to coach soccer, do tae kwon do or does that stuff make it worse?

One other BIG issue is that I take Suboxone for opiate dependence. This medication is NOTHING like methadone, I can not tell that I even take it. I got into dependency after 9 knee surgeries and a genetic predisposition from my father so ease don't judge and just see if you can help my anxiety. The question is how often do you wind up needing opiates during flares? I am in some horrible pain right now mainly left hip , neck , both knees and feet. The pain in my hip and knee would be an 8, but I'm tough. I got a toradol shot, betamethasone, robaxin for muscle pain and cramps, and ibuprofen, but I can't stand this much longer. So- could you share about your severe flares, pain meds, is hospitAlization common? I have a strong recovery and if I have take opiates out of necessity then it will be ok, nut if it's a common thing I may need to taper off the suboxone because it blocks the effects if most opiates.
1 Responses
1193998 tn?1265117597
Hi Jilscot,

I've had RA since age 5 and am now 50. The only time I've taken opiates is post surgery, never to manage arthritis pain. However I know others who do take opiates, so you won't get any judgment from me! :)

Keep in mind your blood tests may not show anything definitive. Many of us with all the classic symptoms never show a positive Rh factor or high sed rate in our blood work, or it shows up much later. But hopefully your rheumatologist will go ahead and treat the symptoms you present.

It can take time and patience to find the right combination of medications for you. There is no "one size fits all", unfortunately. Hang in there, and perhaps ask for a referral to a pain management specialist.

Even if you are flaring (the disease can come and go in flares, or be more of a chronic condition), it's important to keep your joints moving. Gentle exercise is essential - walking, swimming, cycling, anything non-impact. It might hurt a bit, but the general rule of thumb is that if the pain subsides after a few hours of rest, you're okay. If it still hurts the next day, you did too much and you need to ease up.

Coaching? Sure, why not? Running up and down the field with the kids...hmm, that's a tough one. You may need to have an assistant coach help you out, or have some of your more talented players do the more strenuous demonstrations that you're trying to teach your less experienced players. Then again, once your symptoms are managed, you may not have any problem at all.

As for tae kwon do, that one's tougher. You'll have to consult with your rheumatologist on that one. I'd be careful of anything that's high impact. You could definitely do something like tai chi, or other types of martial arts that require forms. But I'm not certain about the high-contact sparring part.

Hang in there! Hopefully once you find the right combination of meds, flares won't be as severe and not as much of an issue for you. Good luck!
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