It’s hard to recall when exactly the pain started. It could have been as much as 7 years ago. I can remember picking up my youngest son & feeling a weird pain that made me sort-of bounce until I was standing upright. I saw a chiropractor here & there, but as a busy mom to 2 and then 3 and then 4, I always put my aches & pains on the bottom of the list.
Then in September 2008, I finally decided it was time to see a doctor. I went to an after hours clinic at a not-exactly-nearby orthopaedic center. They did x-rays, didn’t find anything, wrote me some scripts for strong meds, gave me a referral to the podiatric ortho in the group & made me a follow-up appt. It was the beginning of a big waste of time.
The podiatrist treated me with shoe wedges for a leg-length discrepancy, but that whole thing grew tired & old very quickly. The shoe wedges didn’t help enough with my back pain for me to ruin every pair of shoes I had with the adhesive & drive 20 miles out of my way to get new wedges when the other ones fell apart.
Next came the follow-up appt with the back surgeon, which led to an MRI on my neck. The MRI showed nothing…or at least nothing the dr could find.
It would be another 9 months before I finally went back to the back surgeon for another follow-up. I had ignored a prescription for rehab for too long, so I had to go back to get another one. I did several weeks of rehab for my lower back in the Fall of 2009.
After rehab, I followed up with the back surgeon, but it was a waste of time. He got paid a lot of money to ask me how the rehab went. It was like an awkward date conversation…where no one has anything to say.
It was during rehab that I noticed my lack of grip in my right hand…my dominate hand. One morning in February (of this year, 2010), I woke up to a completely sore & weak right arm. I had pain in my spine, shoulder, elbow, wrist, and hand…and it ached beyond belief. It would be this way for about 2 months.
During that time someone told me about a GP in the area. When I say “told”, I really mean “raved”. That just doesn’t happen here. When I finally called, I was told it would take 3 months to get an appt. Annoying as it was, I figured I had nothing to loose since all of my other attempt to find answers for my pain had royally failed.
Immediately upon meeting this GP, I knew things would be different. She sent me for blood work & had me schedule a follow-up to discuss the results.
The follow-up was this afternoon.The diagnosis is Rheumatoid Arthritis. Amazingly, all of my other blood work was good or perfect.
Most importantly, I finally have a diagnosis…a reason for my pain. — The next step is meeting with a rheumatologist, having more blood work done, & going from there.
So, I will blog more when I know more…