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Everything posted by gemjar

  1. Hi, I have another question (told you I'd have more... lol) last week when I seen my local doctor, she asked me to sample an anti-inflammatory for the muscle fatigue. She told me that the rheumatologist would want to know how my body responded to this when he sees me for the first time. She only gave me enough for 10days and today is day 4. Well this afternoon I noticed that I was moving more freely and without muscle pain while I was playing with my children. Then later again I noticed that the swelling in my fingers had gone down also. Without the swelling my fingers/hands felt more relaxed and flexible. Is this what the anti-inflammatory does and is this a sign that maybe it isn't scleroderma but something elase ? Has anyone else experienced this also ? I would have thought with scleroderma, that no medication would relax the fingers or take away the puffy fingers ! Thanks again for allowing me to come here freely and ask questions without a diagnosis, i really appreciate that :) I look forward to hearing more on this, it'll be interesting to see how I go for the next 6 days and then see what happens when the pack is finished ! Warmly, Karen
  2. Thankyou for your replies ladies, i appreciate it. Also the suggestion of making a list is a good idea. I have always been good at remembering things, but I have a feeling this will be different. My appointment has changed now to the 28th Feb, so theres really not much longer to wait. Sweet..... this will be my first visit with a rheumatologist and I have it on good authority that he is a patient/caring man who takes his time and is very thourough. So I am feeling at ease at the moment. In the meantime you may still here from me with a question or two, so I hope you don't mind :) Warmly, Karen
  3. Hi, I finally have an appointment with a Rheumatologist on 1st March. My general practitioner did routine blood tests and said that she also tested for antibodies present in RA, Lupus and Connective tissue disease (not sure if I'm saying this right). She said that the tests showed nothing present, but that doesn't eliminate anything yet. She said the Rheumatologist would do more extensive testing. From what I have described to her she also mentioned a disease that affects the muscles, since I have feelings of all over muscle fatigue(i can't remember the name). Can you tell me what sort of tests the rheumatologist is likey to do, what I can expect ? Also how likely is it of a diagnosis when routine blood tests showed nothing wrong? I said that I feared the rheumatologist would think this is all in my head, after coming out of there today I'm starting to wonder if I'm imagining this myself. But swollen fingers and joint pain when I'm doing simple things I'm not imagining. Even when I drive a small distance my fingers end up curved in the position of the steering wheel when I get out of the car and I have to shake my hands, clenching and unclenching them to get the moving again. Hope this make sense and look forward to hearing your replies. Warmly Karen :)
  4. DWC, you're spot on ! Big problem I have.......worry too much what others think ! I do know what you mean and thankyou for those much needed words. Warmly, Karen
  5. Hi All :) Thankyou each of you for your replies and advice. I have stopped searching the net, i have read enough to be informed when I go to the Rheumatologist for the first time. At least enough to know which questions to ask anyway ! The last month has been quite tiring. I know we can blame holidays and all but there are things happenning to me that I am not imagining. 7 out of ten fingers are now bent and more swollen than a month ago. I have had problems with my jaw locking for some years, but now whichever side I sleep on, i wake due to shooting pain through the joint in my jaw. Also pain in both shoulders. Pain in my right elbow, which locked up and woke me due to pain. Pins and needles in my hands also waking me up. It is getting more difficult to make a fist or straighten my fingers, they are most comfortable in a semi clenched position. general aches and pains in lower back, legs and feet. I don't know what the answer is, but I feel much older than I am. I am always tired and therefore a bit of a grouch at times and I think my hubby is sick of my whinging. I don't think he believes what I'm saying, although he admitts to something strange happenning to my fingers. I don't have a confirmed appointment yet, so will just have to keep waiting a bit longer. Once again thank you all for sharing, i admire your strength and courage. Warmly, Karen :)
  6. Hi all, I enjoy scrapbooking and noticed from the photos for the first time, how different my smile is now to what it was 2yrs ago. I have always had a big smile, showing all teeth and some gum, but now when I smile my top lip covers half my top teeth and isn't nearly as wide. I have noticed over the last year that my face often feels like it has a face mask applied, but I have just put that down to fatigue (which I feel every day) Does this ring true with symptoms of Scleroderma ? My feet and fingers are always very puffyand aching first thing in the morning. I ache all over before I get out of bed and just wondering if this is familiar ? Wishing you all a very Happy Holidays :) Karen
  7. Thankyou everyone for your friendly welcome :) I think I caused myself a lot of anxiety this week just finding out more about Scleroderma. I realise now that my husband's aunt, whom I'd only ever had a dozen or so associations with over the last 20yrs, had Scleroderma. I never asked her any questions because I didn't want to appear rude, but she was the loveliest lady and 20yrs ago her symptoms were very obvious. Helen.....i live in Gladstone, what a small world ! I imagine your rheumatologist is the one and the same as my general practitioner has spoken of. I was actually contemplating travelling to Brisbane in the hopes I'd get in quicker. But I have descided to wait, after all it is holiday and holidays, a bit longer willnot hurt I suppose. Funny I have started to look at other peoples hands and fingers when I speak with them, thinking I may be imagining all this. How long did it take for you to get an appointment ? What is your story leading up to your diagnosis ? I hope you don't mind me asking :) Look forward to hearing from you again, Karen
  8. Hi, i'm Karen and I live in Australia. I have been reading like mad in the last week about Rheumatoid Arthritis after visisting with my general practitioner about my fingers. She is referring me to a Rheumatologist because of my problems which have been present for around five years. My right index finger is very tender ofen painful, always swollen (looks like a sausage) and quite bent. I haven't bothered too much until now, but it's starting to affect my daily functioning eg; using a knife, pen, lifing things etc... My other fingers are starting to look take on the same form, just not so severe and most of the time both my hands/fingers are aching and feel best when clenched. I came across your site and with much uncertainty descided to post and ask what you all think. I have read that RA affects both sides of the body in the same joints. This is not so for me. I live in Central Queensland and have to wait a while to see the Rheumatologist who comes only once a month to a town an hour away. Should I be panicking and is it possible to have the symptoms of Scleroderma for 5 years to the degree that I have, or is the disease more progressive than this ? I thankyou in advance for giving me whatever advice or info you have. Rgards, Karen
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