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    Severe arm pain, numbness, weakness
    Jennielynn10 posted:
    Hi All!

    I have RA and have recently been taking Enbrel. Since I started the Enbrel I have experienced major drawing, aching ,weakness and numbness in both arms as well as my left leg and foot. I am in a horrible amount of pain and can't sleep much at all at night. This has been going on since the third injection. I just recently had an MRI to check for MS which is negative - Thank you Jesus! Does anyone have this type of pain with RA? The bend of my arms are fine; it's just my fore-arms to my hands and then from my left knee to my left foot. The weakness and numbness is major at times. It seems to let up a little with increased rest, but doesn't totally cease either. I am just concerned because this weakness and numbness in the arms is totally new. I have had joint pain in my hands, wrists, knees, feet and back for several years now.

    Thank you for sharing any of your experiences!

    Sincerely, Jennie
    jryan143 responded:
    I can relate. My arms and hands go numb every time I sleep or hold something too long[sometimes10 secs is too long> This has gotten worse since RA dx in april of 2008. My PCP says that many of his RA patients also complain of the forearm pain. He scheduled me for a nerve conduction test. That test shows that I have carpal tunnel in my right wrist and several nerves pinched in my left arm. This on top of RA. I think the nerve pain has increased alot since the RA,however,which is causing what is hard to tell. Discuss with your primary a nerve conduction test, and discuss the results with your rheumatoligst. I'm still trying to figure out what is RA pain and what is from other sources. Try to position your arms so they stay down, not over your head so the circulation is better. That helps me some but it is hard to do when you are sleeping,also sleeping on your back it you can tends to keep your arms at your side.I also use a body pillow to support my arms and legs. It has helped. You are not alone with these symptoms and hopefully you can get some relief. Good luck. Keep a smile, smell a flower, look at the blue sky. There is hope. julie
    marigold65 responded:
    This is something that you might consider speaking to your physician about. I don't have RA, but about 9 months ago, I began experiencing numbness and tingling in my feet, legs and horrible pain and burning in my forearms, wrists and hands. I had been relatively healthy until that time, and this just crept up on me suddenly. I went from one physician to the other trying to find someone who could definetly find out what was wrong with me. I was told various things such as I had probably had MS or Lupus, and even had a nerve conduction test. I was told I had carpal tunnel in my wrists, but no one ever listened to the fact that I also had severe (burning) pain and numbness in my feet. Point is, the pain never really went away, and I didn't want surgery, because of potential risks. I finally went to an internist who did bloodwork and found out that I was severely anemic. All the time, I was low in Vitamin B-12 and I also had a low thyroid level. I am blessed to say that I am better and the severe pain in my feet and hands is gone, but I do have some residual numbness in my legs, which continues to improve slowly. It is always best to discuss things with your doctor and make for sure all lab work is within normal range. At the time all of the above started, I was on the low end of "normal", but wasn't evidently eating right nor taking care of myself properly. I do hope that this sheds light on one other potential causes for unusual pain, that necessarily may not be directly linked to RA., but may be a result of another underlying problem. I wish you the best, and I hope that you feel better soon. Best regards, Marigold65
    smasher1 responded:
    I am so glad you got relief!! Low B12 can cause symptoms people associate with RA--pain, fatigue, foggy thinking, low grade fever...Untreated deficiency can result in permanent nerve damage--most people receive treatment while damage still reversible, so you see another example of why it's so important to be persistent. And, don't beat yourself up by feeling you weren't eating right or taking care of yourself because a lot of deficient people don't absorb the B12 from their diet
    bboop54 responded:
    Jennie, I have been seeing my general practitioner for over 8 years, getting more more frustrated. He then sent me to a neurologist to see if MS. One told me yes then left and the next told me no(who do you believe). 2 years ago I filed for disability the pain was so bad I could no longer function. It has been a long hard road. The pain is constant and I can not sleep. I have pain in my hands, arms, neck, shoulders , back, chest, hips, legs and ankles. Finally after many requests I went to a rheumatologist and I at least have some hope. I take 10 different medicines for pain, high blood pressure and diabetes. I have felt no one cared but maybe it is just yelling loud enough to make them hear over all the other noise. Don't give up. I have decided I am going to beat this no matter how depressed I get I still fight. Thanks for sharing. It is good to know others feel the same frustration.

    Truly, Betty
    ertzberger responded:
    Jennie, I'm sorry to here what is going on with you but, its nice to know I,m not the only one having these symptoms. I had taken Enbrel for 5 years when I had to go off of it for a month. When I went back on it I had the same symptoms as you. I had a MRI last week that came back normal which I don't know if it is a relief or not because I know I still have something that is major wrong. I'm curious if they have figured out a diagnosis or treatment for what you are dealing with.

    I would appriciate any information on treatments that have helped.

    Sincerely, Vern
    jennade responded:
    Hi Jennie:

    i am currently taking Orencia. I am going onto the 3rd month, its an injection once a wk. and the pain in my ankles/feet is 100 times better (that's where my real problem was). However, now I am suffering from severe forearm and back arm pain. It was in my back last week but now is strictly my arms. I never had this pain or at least as intense since the injection. Do you believe this is a side effect?
    I am so depressed and ready to give up. Its so difficult to get up in the mornings and go to work. Everyday is just worst.
    Thank you for any feedback.
    Caprice_WebMD_Staff replied to jennade's response:
    Hi Jennade,

    Be sure to discuss this with your doctor. Whether this is due a side effect, your original condition, or something new, your doctor can help you sort this out.

    I hope you get some answers soon. And keep talking on this board if it helps.

    If you ever want to start a new discussion, hold your cursor over the orange Post Now button and choose 'Discussion' from the drop down menu which appears. Fill in the subject line and body of the message (you can ignore the poll part if you want) and Submit.
    We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. ~Joseph Campbell

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