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Rheumatoid arthritis referral - what to expect

(7 Posts)
spottymoo Tue 01-Apr-14 19:28:41

Been feeling totally exhausted for months then two weeks ago I started getting pain in my right elbow then a few days later in my left as well after a few more days it had spread to my wrists and shoulders hmm

After a trip to the gp and bloods done I am showing high on Rheumatoid and I'm anaemic so have been refered to see a specialist on the 17th but unsure as to what to expect.

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 01-Apr-14 19:57:43

IME lots more blood tests.

candycoatedwaterdrops Tue 01-Apr-14 20:17:01

Gosh, that was quick! That's great news; GPs should be on the ball like this.

You'll definitely be sent for various blood tests and maybe some x-rays or an ultrasound. If the rheum can feel/see swollen joints, s/he may offer a depot steroid injection into your bottom. If it is clearly obvious from examination and from the bloods the GP has taken that it is 100% RA, they may start you on some medication, although they didn't start mine till they had al blood tests and scan results. My rheum stripped me to underwear and poked and prodded, so wear easy clothes if you are struggling to get undressed.

Oh and ask your GP receptionist for a print out of the blood test just in case the rheum hasn't received them yet, the system doesn't always work that effectively sometimes.

Best of luck!

spottymoo Tue 01-Apr-14 22:44:10

Thank you both yes I am lucky to have a great gp I had an appointment for the referral the day my bloods came back I could have seen someone before the 17th but choose my closest hospital instead of the city to make it easier to get to.

Hope I don't have to strip down even after a child I like to keep my jelly belly to myself shock

The tiredness scrap that exhaustion is the worse thing and the fact my arms no longer feel my win at 34 I feel like an old woman

candycoatedwaterdrops Wed 02-Apr-14 10:25:44

If you just wear a vest top or sleeveless t-shirt, they should be able to see your joints. They may not make you strip off, don't want to worry you!

WhisperingShadow Wed 02-Apr-14 10:30:04

Gosh that was quick. I have been told to keep a pain diary for a few months as I am to young for things like rheumatiod artheritis and fibromylagia was mentioned with a sneer. I am 36 .

Good luck.

Pandsbear Wed 02-Apr-14 14:18:07

WhisperingShadow - unfortunately you are never too young for RA - terrible that you were told that. I was diagnosed at 27 but had symptoms from about 25 and there are sadly plenty of 'young' (and much younger than that!) people out there with inflammatory arthritis. Could you see another GP if you have been fobbed off? If you do have RA then the sooner treatment is started the less damage you will have.

OP - good advice from candycoated. Things have changed a lot over past 15 years and treatment is usually started asap to stop long-term joint damage. Can take a while to sort out what medications works for you but there are quite a few options that the rheumatology team can offer. Best wishes

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