Thursday, October 10, 2013

rheumatoid arthritis

i have a fancy recipe blog all set and ready to post.  photos uploaded, things tagged, deliciousness ready to send your way.

i don't think i've harped on too much about my body aches and pains, but this post from last month should cover some of it.  the doctor initially said it wasn't RA because of the knuckle involvement.  when we got the results of the first round of bloodwork, my inflammation levels were higher than normal and i had a vitamin d deficiency, which *could* cause some joint pain.  she decided to put me on prednisone and ordered another blood test called vectra da which tests for specific protein markers for rheumatoid arthritis.

the prednisone helped, while it was over 5mg a day.  once i dropped it down as directed, everything came back in full force.  i didn't even realize how much it had been helping until then.  i went back today for an ultrasound 'event'.  they have an RA specialist from the midwest out teaching the rheumy doctors in the practice how to use ultrasound to help diagnose special cases.  my doctor called me because she thought i'd be a good candidate.  i know now that she thought i'd be a good candidate because she wasn't 100% sure where to go with me.  my vectra da score came back at 51 - which is high and shows a lot of disease activity.  my rheumatoid factor is negative, but that can happen early in the disease.  once she did the ultrasounds, she's 100% sure i do have RA and wants to speak with me tomorrow about starting on medication.

rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease.  basically, it seems that my immune system has identified  my synovium - the membrane that lines my joints and helps protect them - as something to destroy.  which means my own immune system is trying to kill my joints.  after time, the joints wear down and become deformed, which is stupid.  so now they're going to try to put me on a DMARD - something that suppresses my immune system.

so my own immune system won't attack my joints, but it will leave me susceptible to other things.  like, you know, the flu.  colds.  illnesses.  viruses.  etc.  damn it.

i'm a little pissed.  i'm sad and scared too, but mostly kind of angry at my own body for betraying me like this.  which is stupid.  but not that stupid.  because it's like HEY BODY WHAT IS THE BIG IDEA OF FUCKING ATTACKING ME??? AREN'T WE SUPPOSED TO WORK TOGETHER?

at least i know why i've been so achy and ouchy and tired and whatnot.  that counts for something, right?  at least now i know what we can try to do to make it better.  i guess that's all i can do.

bah.  i think i need a nap *yawn*....

1 comment:

  1. I have to go to a rheumatologist in a few weeks. My doctor did the arthritis panel and everything was normal so she is thinking fibro. But, I have what look like rheumatoid nodules on my fingers so we will see.