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Arthritis. Ow.

(19 Posts)
Dumpylump Sun 28-Jul-13 13:29:57

I was diagnosed as having early onset arthritis 9 years ago, which my gp believed was triggered after I fractured my wrist. Initially it only affected a couple of fingers on my left hand but over the last few years it has spread to all my fingers on both hands.
Over the last couple of days my left wrist and right thumb have been sore, stiff and achey, and I'm just wondering is the anything I can do to ease this?
I have a different gp now, and last time I saw her she said it was just bad luck, there was nothing they could do, and yes, it would probably get worse sad
There is no family history of arthritis, and I'm only 48 - my 74 year old mum has better hands than me!

Matildathecat Sun 28-Jul-13 16:50:46

Have heard good things about rosé hip

Also fish oils recommended by my physio. Having said that I always forget to take supplements!

Icantstopeatinglol Sun 28-Jul-13 16:57:39

Do you know what type of arthritis you have?

Icantstopeatinglol Sun 28-Jul-13 17:07:28

After thinking more I think you need to ask to be referred to a rheumatologist. Yes you fractured your wrist in the past but this is now affecting both hands so doesn't seem to be just related to the injury. It seems it may have triggered something off but you need to be referred.
I have psa and I'm on meds at the minute to prevent further joint damage. If it is an inflammatory arthritis then without treatment you will potentially will end up with joint damage.
Don't want to scare you but in my opinion gps don't know everything about arthritis and I had to basically tell my gp what to refer me as he wasn't going to.

lonemom Sun 28-Jul-13 17:17:29

Do you know what type of arthitis you have ? If you have rheumatoid arthritis you may want to try provailen. My mother is taking it along with her regular NSAIDS and has helped her a lot with her inflammation and pain. You can read about it here:

grimbletart Sun 28-Jul-13 18:46:19

On a practical level I use wrist/hand splits for certain activities e.g. vacuum cleaning - helps to keep the thumb/wrist in the optimum position and provide support. I also use a squash ball to squeeze and relax my fingers. Important to keep mobility. Using a keyboard (if you are a touch typist) helps keep fingers mobile too. I'm afraid I have learned to live with the pain on the basis that there is little one can do about it unless you are willing to go down the drugs route.

Dumpylump Sun 28-Jul-13 23:00:31

I don't know what type, but I would assume its osteoarthritis, but I really don't know, and I don't remember gp saying specifically - have just realised that's a bit rubbish of me confused
Thank you all for your advice, I think that first I need to go back to Dr and ask for a bit more info and possibly referral to rheumatology clinic....I don't really want to go down route of drugs on a regular basis, and although my hands are often uncomfortable and kind of toothachey iykwim, the last few days it has been a lot sorer and much more difficult to tolerate.
I'm going to phone for an appointment in the morning.

sashh Mon 29-Jul-13 00:50:20

There is loads that can help, you need a referral to see a rhumatologist.

I have wrist splints for bad days, and I have 'resting' splints made for me. I have insoles in my shoes - again made for me.

I have physio when I need it and steroid injections (my GP does them but most places it is done in hospital).

There are antiinflamatories, pain killers and disease modifying drugs.

MarcelineTheVampireQueen Mon 29-Jul-13 01:06:13

You def need a rheumy. It could be reactive arthritis due to your injury, could be osteo. But you need a treatnent plan and the sooner the better.
Good luck!

justanuthermanicmumsday Mon 29-Jul-13 01:46:36

I got it apparently postnatal but my baby is just over 1 and this started a year ago now so I'm sceptical.

Anyways i spent mor than 6 months hassling gp feeling like a hypochondriac they didnt take me seriously even though i have never had huge health complaints.

ask to to be referred to a rheumatologist for diagnosis and treatment. The rheumy will tell gp to put you on waiting list for a physiotherapist, rheumy may offer meds too. They may help, hasn't helped me since the exercises suggested are basic things that i was already doing before. But they may help you why not give it a try anything for a bit of relief right?

If you search mayo clinic and arthritus hand exercises you will get demonstrations of exercises for your hands they could help if repeated often and done correctly.

I also find not using computer.laptop phones too much reduces pain in hands. Any joints effected soak in hot bath just before bed, rather than a quick shower helps in pain relief a lot its a godsend. Bath salts in water a super I've noticed a difference. Keeping joints warm helps too, avoid cold temps.

i wish you the best life sucks a times like these .

Icantstopeatinglol Mon 29-Jul-13 07:06:39

Op, my main areas of problems are hands and feet. I'm currently on anti inflammatries and have just started dmards to prevent further damage and try and help with the pain etc.
I too didn't want to go on meds but I have an inflammatory type of arthritis which left untreat will damage my joints and with 2 small children I can't let that happen. It happens so quick too, I already have damage to one of my knuckles...I'm 35.
I think you're right, you need to see a rheumy and find out what type of arthritis you have first then you can decide from there what to do. If it is osteoarthritis I'm not certain but don't think it's treat as aggressively as the inflammatory types (I may be wrong though).
Hope you get sorted soon, make sure you push your gp and explain how it's getting worse.

Dumpylump Mon 29-Jul-13 09:57:36

Oh I think some of my joints are already damaged sad I have hard knobbly knuckles on both pinkies, both index fingers and my left middle know, like old ladies?

FoodSchmood Mon 29-Jul-13 10:24:36

can't post post properly now as busy with my son, but you should ask for a referral to a rheumatologist, there are medications you can try that the GP cannot prescribe. there is a type of auto immune (I.e. inflammatory arthritis, rather than osteo) arthritis called reactive arthritis that can be triggered by breaks and injuries. I'm astonished your GP hasn't seen fit to refer you, arthritis is a treatable condition for many people but it's well out of the area of expertise of a GP to manage it. (I have a type of inflammatory arthritis which at its worst left me unable to walk, but thanks to medication I am currently well enough to carry my toddler around, play squash, do diy, most things really, without pain most of the time and just a bit of fatigue from the really isn't something you just have to live with.)
good luck! smile

MarcelineTheVampireQueen Mon 29-Jul-13 12:00:48

OP if its Osteo, they could be nodules? Bouchards? I think? These can be removed.

If its a type of inflammatory arthritis, well in this day ad age with the advancement of medication such as DMards, Biologics and anti TNF drugs, deformities are rare if extinct so please go see your rheumy.

In the short term while you are waiting, ibuprofen for swelling to dampen down a flare, pain killers if you need to take the edge off. Alterate ice and heat if you need too. Keep active, Google exercises for hands (cant link on phone) keep up your calcim (which is recommended for the osteo as well ) and look after your self!

Arthritis is not the sentence it once was. I was diagnosed at age 4. Advancements since the 80's have been amazing and what I can do now if comparison to what I could do as a child is like night and day. I have my family, work, sports etc. No different as such to anyone else. In fact I help others now to learn how to live with arthritis. So go do it now, go get the referral to Rheumy and let us know how you go!

Dumpylump Mon 29-Jul-13 17:26:55

Ok, I have an appointment at gps on Thursday. I don't really know what to say other than, it is a lot more painful now than it has been in the past, and can they refer me to rheumatology at the hospital. Anything else? It's going to be a locum as my dr is on holiday....not that it matters.

justanuthermanicmumsday Tue 30-Jul-13 11:02:53

if it means you exaggerate pain do so. I'm not very expressive in the face its like ice cold. So husband said it was my fault they didnt refer me quicker they couldn't see it in me. What did he want me to do start crying in front of gp i like to appear tough so i refused. But I believe he was right if someone moaned a bit in pain or said i cannot go on like this. Because really that's how I felt the fatigue is the worst thing.

Make sure you really express the pain and they know its not a bit of muscle pain. If they do nothing keep making appointments until they refer you. I was on my last straw if you se you're getting no where a&e ask for a rheumy that's what I did with my mum she suffered for many years before being diagnosed with lupus, gp was not helpful arrogant git.

Icantstopeatinglol Tue 30-Jul-13 22:50:55

Dumpy probably the best route to take with your gp is to be quite firm and say you're concerned that it is getting worse and you're also very worried about joint damage. If they think this could all come back on their shoulders they'll refer you.
I literally said to my gp that enoughs enough basically and it was one thing after another and I wanted to be referred as there had to be more to it than just me having one problem after another. Sometimes if you moan on they'll refer you just to get rid of you! smile
Oh and I have the lumps on my knuckles which is linked to my psoriatic arthritis. Hands and feet are the main areas of problem with that type of arthritis.

Dumpylump Sat 03-Aug-13 12:22:44

Wee update. Locum dr was very nice, and appeared quite knowledgeable. She thinks my knuckles have Heberden nodules which would indicate osteoarthritis, but she has arranged for me to have some blood tests done, as I also have indicators for rheumatoid, and psoriatic arthritis. She wants me to see her again after they have those results and is arranging referral to rheumatology clinic at our local hospital. She prescribed a gel for me to rub over my hands to relieve pain.
We were at a local country show type thing yesterday where there was a stand with a couple of guys flogging a "medical piece of equipment" to relieve pain and symptoms of arthritis. Dp nudged me over as initially we both thought it was an information/support group thing...but no. The "medical piece of equipment" was a plastic plate type thing that vibrated really strongly and you held it against affected areas so it kind of massaged it. A not particularly pleasant feeling and stand guy was quite handsy - dp said "if he'd touched you again I was going to clock him one!" cut long story short, this thing cost £595!! And stand guy was quite put out that we wouldn't just "stick it on the credit card"!
Struck me as being like Dr Gillyflowers miracle remedy for absolutely all that ails you - available from all good covered wagons circa 1875 in the Wild West grin

jaysk Wed 23-Oct-13 03:01:43

These people have a natural arthritis remedy that my husband has found quite effective. His arthritis is quite mild at this stage - so far so good with this medication.

I use their headache and insomnia products which work very well for me.

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