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    Maybe Im just crazy.
    whatshequilted posted:
    Sometimes I think that, Please tell me if Im on the right track here.

    I am a 35+1 year old woman and I feel like Im 70 most days. A year ago I was able to play soccer with my boys, take long walks with my dog and do most everything that I wanted to do.

    I have suffered with arthritis in my knees now for several years, and have taken naproxen to help with that. I see me ortho doctor every 3 month for a coctail that he injects in both knees that helps me get up the stairs.

    In the last several months, The joints in my 3 middle fingers (both hands) both wrists, both ankles have been painful. My hands constantly fall asleep when Im laying in bed reading a book, and my wrists are now killilng me just typing this. I have also experienced some burning on my outside ankle muscle.

    I went and saw my GP about my concerns that this is possibly RA. My mother has it, my grandmother had it, and several other family members. She looked at me and explained it wasn't RA because I was to young.

    She sent me off with 15mg of Mobic, with 5 refils, and ran some tests. the RA Factor came back negative and im slightly enemic. There was a little note from her to continue my course of action. What take anti inflamatories for an undiagnosed reason indeffinitly?

    This last month the pain in my joints has gotten much worse, and now Im starting to have lots of chest pain. It freaked me out at first until I realized it was more pain in my ribs and my sternum bone. I feel like my chest is constantly bruised. It takes me about 4 alieve, 1 mobic and an hour and a half each morning to walk without much painin my ankles, I cant wear a bra for the pain, and I have had to stop sewing, and its getting pretty old.

    I am tired all the time, I very rarely make it past 8pm, Im bitchy, depressed, have constant headaches, and ready for someone to tell me what the hell is wrong with me. I have also developed a crazy unreasonable craving for sweets, which is killing my waiste line as I don't have energy to "walk it off" My husband is getting frusterated, as there is no "diagnosis" I am obviously "milking" this

    I went around my doctor and made an appointment with a Rheumatalogist (sp), which pissed off my GP, but at this point Im not sure what else to do. Am I crazy?
    sallymander66 responded:
    Who cares if your GP is pissed off --- you are you own best advocate and you have to do what you know in your heart is best for you. When is your rheumy appointment?

    From what I have read and studied, and from what my rheumy talked with me about, is that an RA diagnosis cannot be made by looking at only one thing. Blood work can confirm a dx but the blood work alone cannot rule out RA.

    From your other symptoms, it def sounds like a trip to a specialist is well in order. You are not crazy and you are not alone!! please keep us posted!

    chesspringer responded:
    I agree with Sallymander....who cares if your GP is pissed off. I started in Jan with normal bursitis pains in my shoulder (have had that for a few years) that never went away and a couple of weeks later, my arms were numb and wrists and fingers hurting on both arms. After seeing a neurosurgeon and and a neurologist, both of whom said they didn't see anything wrong, it was a toss-up between an ortho and a rheum. I pushed for the rheum and my GP agreed, although I think she really wanted to opt for the rheumy.

    Although my RF and CCP levels were "negative" my rheum still diagnosed with RA...called sero-negative RA....because my symptoms and other blood markers were enough (very elevated sed rate, elevated CRP, elevated neutrophils) to confirm. Apparently 25% of early cases don't test postive for RA blood tests. Lots of research I have done confirms. The good news is, if you are like me, it probably means we have caught this very early and the hope/goal is to slow down or even prevent a lot of the severe damage this can cause.

    Definitely do what you think is best for you. Seeing a specialist for arthritis is a good start. A lot of GPs are not completely up to date of RA (like her but she was pretty convinced it wasn't RA even though she agreed to let me see a rheum). If it's not RA, then you can move on. If it is, than you are on the right track to get better. Really, what right does your GP have to be mad that you are seeing a specialist? What harm does it cause him/her? It's not their life, it is yours. You can always find another GP, but if you have RA, you can't get your bones back and delaying a diagnosis can cause irreparable bone loss.

    And by the way, I am 38 (ok..39 in 9 days). Read other posts on this site and you will find RAers in their 20s and early 30s so you are not "too young" for this.

    Keep us posted. When do you see the rheum?
    gofergulch responded:
    Sounds like you need to find a new GP. Mine was happy to refer me to the Rheumatologist because she knew I needs specialized help. Initially he put me on Prednisone for about 3 weeks along with Humira. We have now added methotrexate and I am feeling so much better. My RA factor came back negative for several years but all the other symptoms were present. I also have fibromyalgia and osteoarthritis. Take your husband to the doc with you. He really needs to understand what RA is. It's hard for spouses because we look "normal", not sick. I have been told that RA is not hereditary so you need to check this out with your rheumatologist.
    ateecher responded:
    I was only diagnosed two weeks ago and I'm in agreement with everyone. Your GP should not be pissed. Mine actually apologized to me that she didn't think to send me to a Rheumatologist sooner. She encouraged me to see a fibromyalgia specialist because I also have fibro. The fibro specialist sent me to the Rheumatologist.

    A good GP should be there for you and support your decisions with regard to your health.

    I hope you feel better soon and you get help quickly.

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