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Endoscopy today.

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I had my upper endoscopy today. I was having a really good conversation with the nurses that were getting me ready for the procedure and brought up that I thought I might have scleroderma. They asked what type of problems I was having and why I was having the procedure. The nurse was getting ready to put in the IV and asked if I had any thickening skin as of yet. I told her no. I didn't think I was having any problems with that. Well, she was about to put the IV in the back of my hand, same place I had recently had one, and I asked her to put it somewhere else. The IV for my shoulder surgery was there and when they gave me medicine through the IV for nausea it caused my hand to get bruised. She found a vein just on top of my wrist and began to put in the needle. That was when she told me, you are getting thicker skin because she was having trouble getting the needle in.


I'm definitely feeling low after that.


The endo thing was fine. There wasn't much trouble they could see, but the doctor stretched my esophagus to help with my trouble swallowing. At least it will hopefully help. If it doesn't then we have to do the other tests to see if it is motility issues.


I'm really bummed about the skin issue. I have swollen fingers in the morning, and later they look leathery. I thought the skin between my thumb and index finger was feeling tougher, but thought it could just be winter dry skin.


I guess I really need to see the rheumatologist again and see if he can refer me to the specialist in Madison WI.

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Hi Mando621, I know the feeling. I went for a CT scan and the fellow who injected the dye into my vein said to me" why is your skin so hard, what do you do for a living"? It made me feel really bad. I would see a reumatologist as soon as possible and begin to get some treatments for your symptoms. Good luck, we're all in this together. Birdman

Hugs for All,


Julie (Bird Lady)

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Hi mando,


Sorry you had a rough time at the endo appt. I know the feeling about seeing and feeling your skin hardening, it's one of the most scary things one can imagine. But remember there are cases where it's only on the hands and does not spread to the rest of the body. My knuckles look like elephant trunks. That was a hard one to accept, but I figure if it doesn't spread, I can live with that. I have noticed some skin changes on my chin but I am in denial about that and trying really hard not to focus on it. It's understandable that you feel down and out. My fingers also swell pretty bad. As my 15 year old nephew so eloquently put it "your fingers look like sausages!". Well its true, they do, but that's not the end of the world. Take it one step at a time and try to stay optomistic. I know it's easy to say, yet hard to do, but try your best. Anytime you want to talk, please feel free to shoot me a message.


Much love and warm squishy hugs!!!


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Thank you Birdman and Karen for your warm thoughts.


I was really upset last night when I attempted to discuss this with my husband. He didn't seem to think it was any big deal. He even "tried to cheer me up" by joking. I wasn't in the mood for jokes.


Since I don't have a true diagnosis I'm not sure if he just thinks it is in my head? I got really angry because I've been trying to ignore problems for about a year now, and it is getting harder and harder to do that because the problems are more obvious to me. He seems to be in a form of denial which I can understand.


I'm glad I can come here and talk to people who know what I'm going through.


Take care..



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Sorry you are going through this. It sounds like you are at a place now where when you have your appt with a rheumatologist doctor that he/she can do a biopsy of a site that is hardened and that will give a definitive diagnosis if you have sclero or not. I have skin involvement that is pretty bad. At my last appointment I asked her what number I was for involvement and she said mine was off the charts. Not exactly what I wanted to hear. Mine is on my legs and arms, chest and face, so I guess it's pretty much everywhere. I have systemic sclero with a little lung involvement, gastro problems, but no heart yet. My biggest problem is how much I hurt all over (I also have polymyositis) and the fatigue. I have no energy at all that's for sure.


Good luck at your appointment and I hope it gets you some results.


Warm hugs,



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