advice for holistic approach for ra

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alcraig13
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 10/9/2008 4:10 PM (GMT -7)   
i have recently been diagnosed with ra. before beginning any drug therapy i would like to try a natural allternative. i have been on prednisone already and did find relief and movement again in my hands. i am only 32 and do not want to live on meds the rest of my life. any sucess stories with diet changes will be great.

sjkly
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Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 2113
   Posted 10/9/2008 4:49 PM (GMT -7)   
I hate to be overly negative but diet does not control RA. If you get early aggressive medical treatment you may spare yourself permanant debilitating joint damage. If you take a year or two to try holistic treatments and they fail-which they almost certainly will-you are likely to end up with severly irreprably damaged joints.

Please, get a good rhuematologist and get on DMARDS right away.
Sj

momto3
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Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1331
   Posted 10/9/2008 5:48 PM (GMT -7)   
A bit of advice from someone who has been on Enbrel, Methotrexate, Plaquenil as well as pain medications and NSAIDS..I've been going to my rheumatologist going on 4 years this November, and as you mentioned the Prednisone does wonders.  Yes, there are certain things that you can avoid that will increase inflammation (red meat) It is known that a vegan/vegetarian diet can help decrease inflammation.  There is nothing wrong with trying homeopathic remedies in conjunction with traditional medications.
 
I'm having a difficult week pain wise and decided to look into herbal remedies myself, and at this time I'm trying Devils Claw to help with my pain, however the jury is still out on if it works or not.  I do know that in some of my worst moments, the Methotrexate and Enbrel were added because I wasn't getting any relief.
 
Nobody wants to live the rest of their lives on medication, and when I first went in for my visit wondering what my joint pain was, I never dreamed I would still be going to the rheumatologist some four years later. 
 
You will know when the time is needed for more aggressive meds.
 
Good luck to you.

Ducky
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Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 3199
   Posted 10/10/2008 2:48 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey alcraig13, welcome to the forum.. Which of your joints are affected by RA? Are you still on the prednisone? momto3 gave you lots of good advice.. Changing your diet CAN help a bit with RA, my fellow MOD Erin, drastically changed her diet, and she did see improvements.. they were slight, as she has very severe RA, but they were noticeable.. However, you do need to be careful with trying to prolong taking meds, you can like Sj stated, end up with severely damaged joints... Are you being treated for your RA by your Primary doc or your Rheumy? Good luck to you, and please let us know how you are doing...
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alcraig13
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 10/10/2008 6:13 PM (GMT -7)   
i am on my third day of medrol. my hands are the most effected, but the rheumy found inflammation in my elbows and knees as well. i really do not like taking this prednisone. it is making me sick to my stomach and quite shakey as well. however, i can move my hands in the morning for the first time in six weeks.
5 months ago i was as healthy as a horse, or so i thaught. the swelling and pain seemed to come on me like a runaway train. is this normal?

sjkly
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 2113
   Posted 10/10/2008 6:22 PM (GMT -7)   
Yes, it is one set of normal for RA. The other side of normal is to be systemically ill for months, no inflamation, negative blood tests etc and then finally have a swollen joint.
The problem with RA is that the fluid in your joints can be corrosive-some people end up with severe joint damage in just a few months. Early aggressive treatment is the only way for those people to prevent or limit permanent joint damage. Other people-like me-don't experience as much corrosion-but its hard to know which group you are in until it is too late.

allgirls
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 31
   Posted 10/20/2008 1:25 PM (GMT -7)   

I keep hearing people say early, aggresive treatment is best.

I have not been diagnosed w/RA, however my doc said she believes it could be - even though tests are negative.

If all tests are negative, how can one be aggresive - just incase this is RA.  I don't want to wait until the pain is crippling.  Do you recommend starting something just because of the physical symptoms.

Jenn


momto3
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1331
   Posted 10/20/2008 4:58 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Jenn,
 
Some docs will start you out on treatment based on your symptoms without positive testing since tests alone are not indicative of RA.  I was on NSAIDS for about 6 months before I started on Plaquenil, and then another 6 months before the MTX was added to that..I'm now on the Ebrel because the others didn't work as well as they should have.
 
My doctor didn't immediatly put me on a DMARD because my joint pain was only in my knees at the time, however as I continued along, the joint pain spread elsewhere and it was obvious that I needed more aggressive medicaitons.

golitho
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 1670
   Posted 10/20/2008 7:05 PM (GMT -7)   
I started with RA two years ago with the flu and sore knees. The flu went but the painful knees didn't. They were a bit swollen, no other pain. All bloods negative but after 3 months on celebrex, with no improvement, sent to a rheumy who put me on Sulphasolazine and prednisone. I also felt "what if she's wrong and I'm taking all these toxic drugs for nothing?" But the pain kept getting worse and spreading to other joints, my blood is still negative for Rheumatoid factor but I now realise there are so many forms of arthritis and not all show up with classic tests. When you finally find that cocktail of drugs that works for you, its just blissful to wake up without all the aches and pains. To be able to get down on the floor and back up again! So hang in there. Weigh up the drugs against quality of life. I've heard of people who go into remission and off all their medication for awhile but sadly I only seem to get worse. Not helped by the fact that the drugs keep wiping out my white blood cells and I get panicked calls from my rheumy to stop all medication which sets me back again. But when they work, life is good.
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