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Psoriatic arthritis :(

(12 Posts)

I've already posted about this on our postnatal thread, but thought I'd try to get some advice here

I've had pain in my wrists, knee and ankle for a few months, wondered if it might be related to BFing so tried a few weeks of vitamins before seeing the doctor. He is quite sure that my joint pain is psoriatic arthritis, and he had a look at my scalp which is much much worse than it has been for ages (it cleared up completely in pregnancy), and said he woulnt be surprised if I lost my hair. He also had a quick look at the rest of my psoriasis (its spread like a bugger) and prescribed a different cream for me to try.
Have to have blood tests to confirm how to treat my joints, which may confirm that its that, but may not (half of cases have a particular gene, I do believe), and see a dermatologist (which will of course take months)

But what am I supposed to do in the meantime? First thing in the morning I really struggle with the kids sad luckily cause of DHs shift pattern at the moment, he's only not there two mornings at a time. But from Novemeber, hes back on 5 day weeks (still shifts)

I already have depression (not PND, long term)
And apart from that, I could be disabled and bald sad I'm only 26 and I feel like an old woman
my poor kids, my poor DH, and poor me sad

OhYouBadBadKitten Fri 28-Sep-12 21:58:53

Im marking my spot so that I can come back to you over the weekend. I have PA and psoriasis. Despite getting really thick psoriasis on my scalp I've never been bald, just have a good haircut to help with it being thinner.
There's loads of good treatments for PA that will really help you when you find the right ones.

Will come back to you with a fuller reply, but try not to worry, it's not as bleak as it seems, I have a really full and good life.

RandomMess Fri 28-Sep-12 22:04:41

Dh has just been diagnosed, tbh I think you need an urgent referral to a rheumatologist, which should be fairly quick.

The first proper drug DH is trying is treating his psorasis and PA.

Hulababy Fri 28-Sep-12 22:14:07

I was dx with PA last summer. I've had scalp psoriasis since being a teen and luckily not had much elsewhere. However, despite it not being bad I still developed PA. I have had hand pain for a couple of years but kind of ignored it. But last summer my knee swelled up hugely on day, about a week before I was going on holiday. Gp referred me the samevdy to rheumatology who saw me within 2 days. I was given a steroid injection under my knee and steroid tablets which worked fast. Since them I've had MRI scans, X-rays and blood tests. It too a couple of months or so to get a dx and start in DMards. I now take these daily and a very low dose of steroids, plus have the extra strong cocodamol for as and when. I've had a couple more flare ups and injections since. I still have pain most of the time but low level but less swelling. I cn ontrol the pain with meds though.

You def need the referral to rheumatology and get started on DMards as these can. Help prevent damage to the joints.

RandomMess Fri 28-Sep-12 22:34:10

Have to say Dh's referral to rheumatology was only about 3 weeks and that included August which always means these things seem to take longer! You cannot afford to wait months.

newbielisa Fri 28-Sep-12 22:50:19

PA is a really strange condition with no hard and fast rules. I was dx with it when I was 19 and had a total hip replacement at 22. Hip joint had worn down by 2 inches in about 3 years. I occasionally have flare ups in my elbow but the strange thing with PA is it can just go away for short/long/forever periods, remission if you like. A key sign of PA is on your nails, a pitting effect like little pin dents.

We're also told about the tiredness that comes with it, not sure if that goes away but am 33 weeks pregnant with a 2 year old so am perpetually tired anyway.

My knee used to play up a lot and I've had in excess of 20 steroid injections in it until a new Doc at my practice put an end to it and said nope no more injections - get to physio.

I have absolutely no symptoms of being a PA sufferer right now. I wanted to let you know, like PP that it may not be the worse case scenario.

For info, for years the meds I took were Naproxen and Sulphasalazine. Haven't had them since first pregnancy. Advice I was given early on, keep your weight down and gentle exercise when you can.

Good luck

I have to see him again next week about my ADs (recently changed them), so I'll ask about the rheumatologist then. Though I wonder if he hasnt referred me yet because he said hes hoping the blood test will show the easier treated cause (Quick google........ HLA-B27 gene marker), so I guess he could then attempt treatment without me seeing a consultant...?
I need to get some pain killers then anyway, cause I cant take ibuprofen!

Feeling much less panicky this evening by the way smile thanks for the replies x

Oh and OhYou - I have the MN haircut atm grin

Newbie, mine cleared up completely in both pregnancies (DS1 will be 2 next week, DS2 is 5 months) doctor joked I should try to stay pregnant smile

I'm also exhausted, but with depression and two under two, I'd attributed it to that and never complained to the doctor about it. I could literally sleep for 24 hours if I had no kids to look after! DH gets up with them every morning hes here, and he often has to wake me up hours later. Hes a star.

My nails are pitted and have some have started to separate from the nail bed sad

I've had naproxen before for migraines, so hopefully he'll give me that

The annoying thing is, I've lost three stone since I had DS2, I should be feeling healthy, not old and decrepit

My main hair worry is that I also have trichotillomania...
feel a bit like a walking medical encyclopaedia

sashh Sat 29-Sep-12 04:53:47

Hi hun

Appart from the husband and kids you sound like me. I was 26 when I got a diagnosis.

I have only ever had the odd small bald patch - I can cover it with my hair.

Get yourself some alphosil shampoo - it's available OTC and on prescription.

Fatigue is a symptom of a flare up, so it's probably that. Naproxen is good as an antiinflamatory, you can take painkillers as well.

It is not the end of the world, I know it feels like it but it really isn't.

Hulababy Sat 29-Sep-12 14:21:44

Also agree with thee tiredness. I get affected by the tiredness at times too, sometimes greatly, other times less so.

Hulababy Sat 29-Sep-12 14:22:41

Really do push for a referral to rheumatology. I was told that the sooner you can start the meds the better.

RandomMess Sat 29-Sep-12 14:31:14

Dh is really suffering with the fatique, he is sleeping so much and still tired but the first time he took the meds he did notice a big improvement in the pain levels so there is definately hope.

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