at the Water's Edge

Living life and learning all I can along the way!

The Impression that I Get

I have my next appointment with my rheumatologist on Tuesday.  It's hard to believe that it has already been six months since I was last there.  And that I've had very minimal pain or symptoms in the past six months.  I have to say, I am glad I decided to make the switch to Humira last winter.  And, perhaps I'm thankful for the Plaquenil, as well.  In preparation for my appointment, I've been trying to think through any questions I have or discussion points I want to touch on with my doctor.

I was reading through RA Warrior's posts about foot involvement in RA recently, and it got me thinking: I need to talk about my feet.  My feet were one of the first things affected by RA (so discounting foot joints in formal joint counts continues to baffle me) and have consistently remained my largest problem area outside of my hands.  Amazingly, since my switch to Humira, my feet have felt fantastic.  I cannot recall a single day in the past YEAR that I actually had foot pain.  Maybe a few days where they felt stiff, but they've even felt surprisingly good on our new hardwood floors (although, yes, I am wearing slippers almost constantly now). I'd better knock on wood and hope my feet don't start revolting tomorrow.  At any rate, I was thinking my feet may be a pretty good barometer of my progress.  Not only has the pain gone away for an extended period of time, the nodule I've had on my big toe for a number of years has also shrunk significantly. 

Despite the fact that I don't have any RA symptoms to show and that doctors tend to ignore the feet anyways, I do need to show my rheumatologist the bruises that are still on my toes -- that have appeared in conjunction with Raynaud's attacks.  We'll see if he thinks it's chilblains and if he has any suggestions.  They do seem to be getting better as it gets (slightly) warmer.

Beyond the feet, I do need to talk to my doctor about my wrists, as well.  If I don't take Naproxen for a while, they will begin to act up.  While they feel miles better than they did last year and they don't always appear to have active inflammation, they still only bend about 30-45 degrees and they will hurt if I put too much weight or pressure on them.  I think I will be getting new x-rays on this visit, and I need to request copies of my old ones, as well.  I'm curious to know if he can tell from the x-ray if I do have permanent damage and how things may have changed since my last x-rays a year and a half ago.  Undoubtedly, if there is damage, some of it occurred between November 2011 (when I got the x-rays) and March 2012 -- the period during which I had my worst symptoms.  I seriously doubt much has changed over the past year. There will be no way to tell for sure...but that's the impression that I get :)

Have you ever been close to tragedy
Or been close to folks who have?
Have you ever felt a pain so powerful
So heavy you collapse?
Have you ever had the odds stacked up so high
You need a strength most don't possess?
Or has it ever come down to do or die
You've got to rise above the rest?
No? Well...
I never had to knock on wood
But I know someone who has
Which makes me wonder if I could
It makes me wonder if 
I never had to knock on wood
And I'm glad I haven't yet
Because I'm sure it isn't good
That's the impression that I get.

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Hi there! My name is Dana and I live in West Michigan with my husband, Tom and our dog Copernicus. I created this space as a place to share the things I learn along this journey I call life. I work in marketing and I'm a sort of Jane of All Trades, interested in all things nature, gardening, cooking, exploring and learning new things. This blog is a conglomeration of my interests, hobbies, life and life lessons. Thanks for stopping by!