Systemic Disease with Joint Symptoms

Recognizing a systemic disease with joint symptoms Do you ever wrestle with the disease aspect of rheumatoid disease (RD) – a systemic disease with joint symptoms? From what I’ve seen doctors, patients, care givers, and the public all struggle to grasp the systemic nature of the disease. We don’t want to see ourselves as sick, and...Continue reading      11 Comments » Read more

Rheumatoid Disease Thriller: Mystery of the Injured Thumb

“Mysterious” experiences like these can be common with rheumatoid disease and I hope you’ll share some of yours in the comments. Now, on to my rheumatoid arthritis thumb... Several months ago I reached out with my right hand to grasp the handle of a rolling suitcase, and my thumb did not grip. I was met with...Continue reading      24 Comments » Read more

Doctor: Posterior Tibial Tendonitis Is “Extremely Common with Rheumatoid”

We interrupt our regularly scheduled program for a brief discussion of posterior tibial tendonitis in “Rheumatoid Arthritis” (RA) / Rheumatoid Disease (RD). There is a long list of topics I want to cover, but sometimes the RD itself pushes other things farther down the page. This week, I continued to have problems putting weight on...Continue reading      36 Comments » Read more

Livedo reticularis diagnosis – she knelt next to me with a medical textbook

See PART 1 to learn more on Livedo reticularis in rheumatoid disease Last week was one of those professional patient weeks, with three doctor’s appointments and a lab visit. “Professional patient” is not something I happily say. It started out in 2009 as a tongue in cheek way to make the most of an annoying phenomenon –...Continue reading      23 Comments » Read more

If the Gloves Come Off, We Might See the Irony of Rheumatoid Disease

What if the gloves never come off and no one ever knows. Then you end up with a serious disease that everyone thinks is no big deal; it’s just arthritis. But who wants to take them off? I sure don’t. Professional patient days Today was one of those professional patient days – when you have to spend time...Continue reading      98 Comments » Read more

2 steps forward, 1 step back is not a dance move – It’s just life

I’m happy to share NINE new onset stories with you! People write to me all the time about how helpful it is to find these when searching for a diagnosis or trying to understand a new diagnosis. They paint a much more accurate picture than the textbooks have so far. Andrea’s Rheumatoid Arthritis story Amanda N.’s Rheumatoid...Continue reading      2 Comments » Read more

Five Things I’ve Learned about Rheumatoid Arthritis in the Neck

I promised to write about what’s going on with my neck. It’s hard to sort out what would help others to know, so I made a list of five things I’ve learned. Sometimes, it’s about sharing our journey too. Here are 5 things I’ve learned about Rheumatoid Arthritis in the neck 1) Do not ignore Rheumatoid Arthritis...Continue reading      49 Comments » Read more

Leaving It All on the Field: Not the Safest Choice But Maybe Best

Sightseeing, small steps, and sleep I’ve spent most of the last 3 weeks lying down with ice on my neck, or taking extra meds for the back spasms. The night before the FDA tofacitinib hearing, my back got so bad that I was about 90% certain that I would not be able to attend. My little...Continue reading      12 Comments » Read more

The Confusion of a Smile

If you have RA, you’ll probably just nod your head as I share this private experience. If not, you may just scratch you head: huh? It’s all good, right? Well, mostly… I mean, a lot of living with RA is actually hard or disagreeable, but we smile anyway. What are you gonna do, right? I smile a...Continue reading      44 Comments » Read more

Rituxan Decision: Serving Humanity or Taking Care of the Patient (Me)

This is one of those rare posts about my personal medical journey, a Professional patient post. That’s kind of a warning in case I use the word “I” too many times to be polite. It’s crunch time. No one can decide but me. About a year ago I hit the end of the line with my rheumatology...Continue reading      116 Comments » Read more

Keeper or Loser: I’m Not Giving Up, But What Do You Think?

Warning: this is one of those rare personal posts specifically about my life, but I thought it was relevant to share. We have two endearing names for rheumatologists which I’ve coined over the years: rheum doc and The Wizard. Rheumatologists are the doctors who decide not to sneak out Osler’s infamous back door. I always give...Continue reading      141 Comments » Read more
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