I first was diagnosed with O.A. on my lower back about 2 1/2 yrs ago, about 6 months later I was also diagnosed with R.A. So since then I've been taking Methotrexate,and Prednisone. I was taking 6 of the MTX on 2 days a week,and 9mg of prednisone daily,trying to work down to 1mg daily,but my R.A is always very active.Even with both those meds.After a while though I had a liver test done,and it was higher than it should of been,so my Doc cut me down to 3 MTX a week. I tried Remicade in the past and it did not work. Then my Doc put me on Actemra and it was helping alot.. For the first time in 2yrs I felt pretty good. No Fatigue,fevers,and best of all not much swelling,and pain... But for the past few months I have not been able to take the Actemra because I keep getting sinus infections.(Can not take Actemra when you have a infection.Would make matters worse) Soo I'm back to the daily swelling,tightness and pain,and still on 9mg of prednisone and off the MTX for the moment so I can take antibiotics,for the infection..I had a x-ray done on my sinus and was diagnosed with chronic sinus infections..Anyway my PCP diagnosed me also with acid reflux.So I also get heartburn,and stomach pains,and nausea,and sometimes my esophagus would swell,and make it hurt,and hard to swallow..I've been having a problem with swallowing food,and sometimes pills..Every once in a while a pill or two,sometimes small amount of food would go up into my sinuses instead of going down.No hiccups,or coughing when I swallow. I swallow with a liquid and it goes up..My Docs are kind of baffald by that one. Anyways my PCP gave me a prescription of HYOSCYAMINE TAB SL for the swallowing problem and the stomach problems..Whenever I have a upset stomach,nausea,cramps,or esophagus pain I take one of those pills( you can either put it under your tongue,chew it,or swallow it) I prefer under the tounge..Once the pill dissolves and maybe a minute later the nausea is gone,and so is the stomach pain..Maybe you could talk to you Doc to see if that med will help you to,like it does for me.. Hope this helps..View Thread
I was on Methotrexate for about 2 yrs and Folic Acid along with Piroxicam. After the 2 years I began getting tons of canqer(no idea how to spell that) sores in my mouth, they would stay forever and were huge. I had some stomach issues, and lost some weight. My Rheumatologist took me off of the Methotrexate and Folic Acid to see if it was the meds or if i just would get them. Sure enough it was the medication. So there are other side effects as well. You sound like you need something for your belly though. Zolfran works really, really well. My arthritis is absolutely at its worst and I am on no medication for it at this time, as my dr. isn't sure what she want to put me on.....ugggg Hang in there though. If you ever want to talk feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.orgView Thread
HAS ANY ONE EXPERIENCED A GREAT AMOUNT OF WEIGHT GAIN WITH RA AND TAKING METHOTREXATE?
I HAVE TYPE 1 DIABETES AND HEART DISEASE, AND I AM GOING TO TELL YOU IT IS NEXT TO IMPOSSIBLE TO TELL WHAT IS GOING OUT OF WHACK AND WHAT TO ADDRESS. IF IT IS AN EMERGENCY OR SOMETHING I CAN HANDLE ON MY OWN.
I AM RETAINING LOTS OF WATER AND LOOK 5 MONTHS PREGNANT. I WENT FROM A SIZE 8 TO A 14 IN 6 MONTHS AFTER I WAS DIAGNOSED WITH RA.
I AM NOW SEEING MY CARDIOLOGIST, BECAUSE MY ENDO AND RHEUMY DID NOTHING WHEN I KEPT ASKING THEM WHY I WAS GAINING SO MUCH WEIGHT. HE PUT ME ON LASIX AND WE SEE IN A WEEK WHAT THE RESULTS ARE. THEN MORE TESTING. COULD RA HAVE AFFECTED MY HEART SO EARLY IN THE DIAGNOSIS? CAN THE METHO. CAUSE SUCH WEIGHT GAIN OR WATER WEIGHT GAIN?
I have both RA and fibromyalgia, and both affect my feet. I have most of my pain in the first joint of my toes and the balls of my toes. Fortunately, I don't suffer from planter's faciatis. After trying a pair of Point Blank Skecher's shoes at an outlet store, I knew I had found the right brand of shoes for myself. They were so comfortable, and I now have at least 10 different styles of Skechers, many in multiples of different colors. I do have to put different insoles in some, and wear none in some. They are all from the Skechers "Biker" collection, which all have the same type of sole like a sneaker, which is rubberlike and very "sure-footed", which is great for me, as I have had a few falls, one of which really screwed up my left knee permanently. The tops of the shoes go from casual "feminine" sneakers- the Point Blank sneakers to dressy gladiator sandals to dressy black "ballet" type shoes. You would never know they have a sneaker-type sole and have only a 1/2 heel, if even that. I love the fact that they don't look like orthopedic shoes at all. And I have no problem with them being "flats", since I gave up on heels many years ago. I feel like I've reached a happy medium. The only drawback is that I have to order most of them on-line and tho' I normally wear a size 8, I have every size between a 7 and an 8.5, depending on the shoe. But if you shop around on-line, you can get some great discounts and some companies have free shipping and free returns, which really makes it alot easier and cheaper for me. The average price I pay is around $40, which is very reasonable. I'm not a paid promoter of these shoes, but I should be! I love them, and others are impressed when they see the "sensible" soles on such pretty shoes! I hope this helps, but realize that your feet are going to hurt no matter what when you are on them for awhile. These shoes help make it more bearable for me to walk for longer periods of time.View Thread
Kristen--I was diagnosed with RA at the age of 34. I am now 57. I still lead a very active life punctuated with small rest periods. When I need a short rest period, I give myself permission to take it. I just can't do all the housework in one day like I used to so I split it up over the week. I have found that my rheumatologist is my best advocate. I take Humira (TNF blocker) and methotrexate, no NSAIDs. My RA is moderately severe at this time (due to flare up) but I made up my mind many years ago that this disease wasn't going to conquer me. It is so important to get some exercise daily, not only to help the joints but to help improve your stress levels. It is okay to let others know you might need a little assistance at times. The very best thing you can do for yourself is keep a positive attitude (yeah, right when your knees are killing you!). I also think it is important to save some time for yourself every day to do something you really enjoy doing. I sew and have found that when my mind is occupied, I hurt less. I also pray alot. Any focus you can find that gets your mind off of what your body is doing is perfect.
There is a new blood test called a Vectra test. One vile of blood is drawn and it shows your doctor how active your RA is. If you find that a certain medication doesn't seem to be working, call the doctor. There are so many drugs available. All things considered, their side effects are minimal compared to the relief you will get.
Kristen, don't be afraid. This can be managed, it is not a curse, just means you might be doing things a little slower at times but YOU WILL BE DOING THEM! I work full-time and walk all day on concrete floors. I learned about good boots (I have to wear a uniform) and I take short breaks when I need to. Get knowledgeable about your RA. There is a lot of info out there.View Thread
I have severe arthritis in both knees and also a rare dysplasia on both knee caps. I am a former CDF Firefighter and avid hiker/runner. Last November I was hiking with a friend aprox. 3-4 times a week and pain got worse and worse. My Dr. finally sent for a MRI and was diagnosed with a "Mild Femoral Trocular Dysplasia". He had enver seen and therefor would not help nor perscribe pain meds. By the grace of God I found a PT and Pain Mgmt. center that really helps me. I got to the point of not being able to walk to the mail box. There is a cream perscription called "Voltaren Gel" miracle stuff!! Also Norco at almost 8 a day too much, and finally 15mg MS Contin 2-4 every 12 hrs with Norco for breakthrough pain. After 7 months of shear hell I finally can make dinner and sleep, shop, etc...View Thread
last year 3/2010 I was diagnosed with RA after being sick with all kinds of symptoms from stiffness to chest pains,swelling etc., for over 5yrs. Finally I was sent to a Rheumatologist who ran a myriad of test including xrays and her findings were that I have RA. I was placed on Methotraxate first orally then injectable in Oct.2010 when she wasnt getting the results she wanted. This particular Dr. and I didnt quite seem to connect she was kind of standoffish never really giving me any feed back. I changed to a new Rheumatologist in April 2011 who did a myriad of test on me as well, she now says that I do not have RA but that I have Lupus. My question is how can I test positive for it and then in one yr test negative for RA. I also still have the nodules on my finger joints and elbows some are larger than others, and my knuckles are deformed. If I dont have RA what damage can taking the Methatraxate cause me. I have persistant pain in my knees and calfs.My ankles,wrist,fingers and toes are always cramping, my fingers even get cramped in a position and I cant move them for minutes at a time. I wont even go into the other problems I am terribly confused and frustrated at this point. I have asked this new Dr. give me another appt.I am willing to pay her fees just to have the test done again to find what the problem is. UGGGGGH!View Thread
Because time may be limited for your appointment, focus on the 2 or 3 things that concern you the most. If it turns out that the doctor has time to address only two, see if the office (doctor or medical staff) can call you to discuss the other issue. Or, schedule another appointment sooner so you questions and concerns can be resolved.View Thread
I was just reading your post and wanted to share with you my journey with RA. My name is Pat First let me give you some background on how RA has affected me. I have only been diagnosed for two years but, I am fairly certain that I have had the disease for eight years. It incapacitated me for the first two and then went into remission for the next four. In the beginning of the last two year period I found myself becoming increasingly tired to the point of napping three times a day and being exhausted in between naps. I woke up with a headache and went to bed with one as well for over a year. It affected my memory, the use of my hands, knees, shoulders, and neck. I was unable to exercise, carry things, fold much laundry, cut up food, button my shirt; even shampooing my hair was becoming difficult.
Almost a year ago, I had my first abscessed tooth. I was on huge amounts of antibiotics for almost a month. I felt better with the abscess tooth than I had felt in months. I thought I was just having a period of good days in the disease but, when the antibiotics were stopped I had the worst flare I have ever had in the history of my disease. Six months later I developed a second abscessed tooth with infection in the jaw. Again I was put on massive amounts of antibiotics with the same affect on the RA. This time I put the two together. I had antibiotics left over from the first toothache, the Dr. switched medications two weeks into the therapy and I had just refilled the script, so I continued to take antibiotics and started to do research on the net. I found "The Road Back Foundation". I got the book that Dr. Brown wrote from the library and read it. I was determined to try this therapy.
I went to my Dr. and asked him if he would prescribe the Minocycline, the drug Dr. Brown prescribed to his over 10,000 patients, and let me try it. He agreed. I am now almost back to energy levels prior to the disease. I no longer take three naps a day nor am I looking forward to the next one I can take. My headaches are rare and never as intense as before. I can cook, clean, fold, vacuume, tie and button shirts and shoes, almost at normal levels. I still have to rest more than I used to before the RA and I still have some pain in my hands if I over use them. I still take all my medications but, the point is the quality of life I am enjoying is so much better.
I hope you will take this therapy seriously and try it, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain. The drug has few side effects; it is used long term in young patients to treat acne. If you have any questions or just want to talk feel free.
Rarely I will find a patient who is not getting the response I would expect with prednisone. In those patients, I will sometimes prescribe prednisolone. This corticosteroid bypasses the liver and may be more effective in a very small subset of patients.View Thread
I am new to the site. I am on Methotrexate, folic acid. I am grateful that I am retired but I substitute teach. It has been frustrating going through the hair loss and sometimes I swear the meds aren't working. I also have fibro. I have found that exercise is the best. Especially in moderation. Swimming in warm water is the best. A lot of activities that I like to do I have had to cut back on. I used to be so very active. My newest observation is that my legs are looking like they are full of cellulite. I am enbarressed to wear anyting that exposes my legs. I am slowly accepting the condition and try to stay focused on things that bring me joy. I just wonder what is going on that my whole body seems to be changing. Not a pretty site in the mirror anymore. Thank goodness for clothes!!View Thread
I recently read that when one takes methotrexate as many of us do with RA and Sjogrens Syndrome, it can make your levels of folic acid drop in the body which can also lead to mouth sores. Perhaps supplements of folic acid could be helpful.View Thread
There is an increased risk of infection with some of the medications used for treatment of patients with rheumatoid arthritis.Pneumococcal vaccination is recommended for my patients who go on disease modifying drugs such as methotrexate or biologic medications such as Enbrel, Humira, Orencia and others due to this increased risk. The pneumococcal vaccine can decrease the incidence of one type of lung infection. The immune response to this vaccine may decline in patients once they have started these medications so I encourage patients to be vaccinated before beginning these treatments.View Thread
Hi All, I'm hearing lots of people complaining about the side effects of taking this drug. I've only been taking it for a month now. Just a heads up- my rheumatologist put me on an injection form to avoid all the GI issues. I give myself the injection once a week. So, far- there hasn't been any GI issues at all, and the doctor doesn't think there will be, since it isn't digested in that manner. I hope this helps, and perhaps your physicians will consider this option for you. Keep me posted...best wishes to everyone!View Thread
Daily aerobic exercise is recommended to help with pain, fatigue and general health.When choosing to work with a trainer, try to find some one who has experience with arthritis patients.Check into their educational background in this area and ask for references of other clients they treat who have arthritis. Consider checking with the Arthritis Foundation to see if they have a list of trainers that may have completed one of their programs.View Thread
I was diag about 6 months ago w/RA I have been taking Etodolac 500 mg twice a day and lately my hands, arms,...
Posted by An_215671
I was diag about 6 months ago w/RA I have been taking Etodolac 500 mg twice a day and lately my hands, arms, neck and feet have been getting very hard to move along w/tingling and crackling. What can I ddo?View Thread
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I recommend all my patients on methotrexate take at least 1 mg of Folic Acid daily to help decrease the risk of side effects. In those patients who continue to have side effects (eg. nausea occuring over 24 hours after drug administration, thinning hair etc ), I will add a medication called folinic acid taken one time per week 8 -12 hours after the dose of MTX that may help with the side effect. There are reports of allergic reactions with this drug although it is not common in my experience.View Thread
Patients with RA may develop dryness of the eyes and mouth due to a condition called secondary Sjogrens Syndrome. The dryness is due to inflammation of the lacrimal (eye) and salivary (mouth) glands. I recommend that my patients use artificial tears frequently so their eyes do not get dry. For dry mouth, I ask them to avoid cinnamon and take sips of water instead of large gulps. Sugarless gum and hard candy may also help symptoms by stimulating saliva production.View Thread
Many patients with RA have problems going to sleep, staying asleep or waking up early. All three can contribute to fatigue. If you are unable to fall asleep after 20 mintues, get up and do something rather than lying awake. Return to bed when you are sleepy.Go to bed and get up on a regular schedule, even on weekends. Don't drink alcohol before bed. While it may help you fall asleep, your sleep during the night may be light and unsettled causing you to wake up.View Thread
f you have Rheumatiod Arthritis, please change your diet. I'm 48 and began symptoms of RA after 1st child (12 yrs ago) then developed severe RA over the next 3 yrs. Finally, I was diagnosed w RA and prescribed Methotrexate. The drug helped tremendously, but still swollen feet in the morning and couldn't jog comfortably. Next prescribed Remicade. Great results, but constantly sick due to compromised immune system. Stayed on Remicade for 5 yrs then missed several "infusions" due to illnesses. I decided not to resume Remicade treatments. I had some RA return in my feet and knees and occasional flare-ups throughout other joints, so I decided to try a last ditch effort of changing my diet before beginning medications again. I took all wheat out of my diet (VERY hard to do, but gets easier after a month). I also took most dairy out of my diet and eat mostly organic fresh foods. Processed, packaged foods are no longer in my diet either. I no longer have RA symptoms at all and it's been almost 3 years. PLEASE try changing your diet! It's a hassle but worth it. I can't tell you how great I feel. This is huge coming from someone who couldn't snap her baby's clothes, had to walk down the stair backwards due to unbearable foot pain, and couldn't turn the ignition on the car with one hand (wrist pain). My entire body was laden with extreme pain. Now, I have no symptoms what so ever! What do you have to loose? Try this healthy diet for at least 3 months (it takes about 2 months to get the toxins out of your body). No cheating. Remember: no gluten, no diary - yogurt is ok, eat only organic - it's expensive, but less expensive then the cost of RA, I eat lots of fish and chicken and stay away from red meat and pork. You'll have more energy, you'll lose weight and hopefully you'll find that your RA symptoms have lessened or better yet, gone away completely. P. S. If you're religious at all, Lent is good time to start this diet. It really helped keep me in check when I was having those bread cravings! Also, I have my whole family on this diet. Occaisionally they'll have some wheat or dairy here and there, but not much. My husband has lost weight too. We feel this is the way we should be eating even if an illness wasn't involved. I just wanted someone to know this story. I think there are many more like mine and it's going to take time to change the medical communitiy's way of thinking.View Thread
In Sept. 2010, I was diagnosed with RA, positive results. I used methotrexate for six weeks and dreaded it. I...
Posted by An_215670
In Sept. 2010, I was diagnosed with RA, positive results. I used methotrexate for six weeks and dreaded it. I got very sick for days; weak, intense fatique, lots of swelling, fever, etc. I was also referred by my Physican to an RA specialist. The RA Physican tested again for RA, and it was NEGATIVE, she used a different blood test or strain, not quite sure?!* HOWEVER; I tested positive for CHV, leaving me really really devistated. The virus could be due to a blood transfusion I had in 1989 or in a medical sitting, (I was an EMT) back in the days. It is baffling as I will never really know... Sounds crazy huh?
Come to find out, the virus has similar symptoms of RA. There is hope...once I am treated for the virus for a period of 6-12 months, the symptoms that look like RA will go away and the virus will be gone as well. I pray for this remarkable outcome, as my faith does help.
I take it one day at a time, eat much better, pray more, and exercise every day regardless of the weather or how I am feeling!
I was always on the GO, but that is changing, actually for the better. My family seems to really care, and they ask me less frequently to babysit, etc. (I can say NO when I need too!)
I have a great deal of empathy, especially since I am now very familar with RA (in a round about way)! I continue to pray for all readers!
God Bless your journey, as you are never alone. Keep shining.View Thread
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I was diagnosed with RA a year ago and have been doing a few things on a regular basis to help: Daily gentle stretching first thing in the morning before I get out of bed. Parafin wax treatment on hands and feet. Using arch supports in shoes and wearing them most of the time. Wrist splints at night when I have tingling in my fingers. Thumb splints when by thumbs hurts. Exercising in the water. It seems to help.View Thread
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