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Posts Tagged ‘Rheumatoid Arthritis’

R.A.

Hmm…what could this post be about, or who?

Ralph Abernathy, one of the architects of the American civil rights movement? No, not him.

Roseanna Arquette? Rosanne Arnold? Rachel Allen, celebrity chef?

How about Random Acts of God, or Random Acts of kindness–which are, I suspect, Random Acts of God .

Or how about Rheumatoid Arthritis, a random act of biology. With which I have recently been diagnosed, via blood tests and six months worth of what appear to be symptoms. I suppose all this will be clearer in a week after I visit the Rheumatologist for the first time. But for now, well, it kinda sucks to be typing this, on more than one level. Because my wrists and certain knuckles on my hands have been killing me. And before that it was a shoulder sequence that got me to a doctor. And before that, weird goings on with my knees. And before that, really painful elbow stuff such that I was often icing my joints during lulls at the bar. Not to mention some rather annoying bouts of fatigue, that I was just chalking up to a busy lifestyle.

I thought at the time, well, maybe this is just what happens after you turn 40; your whole body goes into some kind of tweak pocket of weirdness. But, no, your joints, as it turns out, aren’t supposed to start aching for no obvious reason. Apparently my immune system has begun to rebel and launched a vigilante campaign on the various spaces where my bones meet up. R.A. is an immune system disorder, not a regular form of arthritis. They don’t know what causes it–a little bit genetics, a lot of mystery, and exacerbation or flare ups linked to stress, lack of sleep, and life’s general bummers. It’s not like what happens when your old softball injuries finally add up and you start limping around in the morning. It’s systemic, and the worst case scenarios are not pretty. But from what I’ve gathered so far, it’s pretty rare to get to worst case scenarios with today’s meds for it. Mostly, I’m told, they can control it with a category of drugs called DMARDs, which are basically low doses of chemo.

Are you fucking kidding me? Chemo?

Whatever; here’s a link if you want more info. I waver between being relieved that there was, in fact, something behind all these Random Aches I’d been having over the last year; being pissed that this is happening to me so suddenly; knowing it’s all going to be ok and I’ll figure it out; and wanting to bawl my eyes out and then go to sleep for a couple weeks.

I’m sure I’ll be writing about it more. Mostly I figured I’d put it out there, as a way to start looking it in its Ratty Ass face.

The bright side is that Grandpa has begun referring to me as Rheumatard Arthur-itis. Sweet.

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