Susan’s Story

Like many people, rheumatoid disease does not run in my family. My diagnosis was one of those strange surprises, following on the heels of a great summer.  I am still hoping for another great summer one day.

Here’s the tale: In the summer of 2014, I was happily working in my flower garden restring some 20-year-old flower beds before a family vacation to Hawaii. During this garden clean-up, my right hand started hurting. A lot. I thought that I had injured my hand with all the digging and weeding and that our vacation time would clear that pain right up. Didn’t happen. Sound familiar?

When I went in to see the doctor about my sore hand, he was skeptical about the injury and thought something else was going on. It was amazing to have my hand hurt so much that I could not sleep at night. A month or so after that doctor visit, my left hand started hurting as well.  I assumed this was because I was using my left hand more to compensate for the sore right hand.  Poor assumption.  When I went back to the doc with this severe symmetrical hand pain, he sent me to the rheumatologist post haste. And another RA science experiment was born...

I am currently taking the following RA medications:
  1. Methotrexate (current)
  2. Prednisone (daily low dose)
  3. Rituxan (will begin 7/16)
  4. Folic acid
Here is the list of medications that were discarded or changed along the way in the past eighteen months or so:
  1. Remicade 
  2. Enbrel
  3. Plaquinil 
And I forgot to tell everyone what I do for fun - collie walking, flower gardening, quilting, sewing, knitting and reading top the list. Right now knitting is a bit beyond me and my stiff fingers, but I can still hand stitch and do English paper piecing projects.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Susan, Thanks for this wonderful blog. I am 32 years old guy from India, dealing with psoriasis from last 11 years. In all these years, I have struggled enough to find a way out of this stubborn autoimmune skin condition. Consuming immunosuppressant pills to trying Ayurveda and homeopath- I have done a lot. But, without much long term benefits in a safe manner. From last two years, I have adopted a holistic healing approach by making positive changes in my diet and lifestyle along with the consumption of relatively high dosage of omega 3 fats and turmeric. I must say that these approach has paid off well. My condition is quite in control in a safe manner. I do manage a blog myself where I share my experiences about the psoriasis management. Here is the link- Psoriasis Self Management