Had my first Rheumatologist visit yesterday (sorta long...)

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by BethM, Sep 9, 2006.

  1. BethM

    BethM New Member

    It went well. I am very impressed with the medical group I joined. So far my appointments have been on time or even early (!!!), and they seem very efficient. I signed up for their online service, so I get lab results, notes from the doctors, and appointment reminders online. very nice.

    I had a new Nora Roberts book with me, and the nurse and I had a great conversation about her and books for a few minutes, so that was a nice start to the visit. I've lost 3 pounds (yay!) and my blood pressure was normal, for once, so that was even better.

    The doc introduced herself by her first name, unusual, but she is young and progressive. She and I discussed my history (I had filled out a 5 page history form before I came in. They had mailed it to me.), and she did a brief physical check of joints and things.

    She really LISTENED, congratulated me on the small weight loss, and was very encouraging.

    The good news is that she feels I DO NOT have RA or lupus (thank you, thank you, thank you!!!), or Sjogrens syndrome. That is a relief, as my mom has RA.

    So, it's FMS and osteoarthritis. And she said I am managing the fibro well, "with minimal narcotics use". I guess that's good, but I'd like it to be gone, not just managed! Maybe someday.

    She offered a cortisone shot in my right thumb, which is arthritic and flaring because I smacked it into the washing machine on Wednesday (bright of me, I know), but I declined, just didn't feel I was up to dealing with that stress and pain. I can always go back for that.

    She did give me a great little thumb splint, which I wore yesterday evening, helped a lot.

    She is recommending to my primary doc that I see an endocrinologist because the low grade fevers and the thyroid issues. I often run a temp of about 99.6 to 100.0 in the afternoons, which isn't really a fever, clinically, but I feel very 'flu-ish' when it goes up.

    The doc said fever isn't usually a part of fibro, but it sure seems to be among those of us on this board, so I don't know what to think about that.

    I just know that I'd feel better if my body temp stayed where it belongs!

    She also ordered x-rays of my hands. When I checked in at radiology, they said about a 10 minute wait, and by golly, I was called in, in about 12 minutes!

    My appointment was at 3:40, and I was out the door by 5:05. Is that amazing, or what? And I felt like I had quality time with the doc, too.

    I feel like a small miracle has occurred!!

    Adding the appointment and a lot of driving for it to my longer work day yesterday wore me out, so I am laying low today, but heck, it could've been a whole lot worse!

    Peace,
    Beth.
  2. BethM

    BethM New Member

    bump. (always feel a little narcisistic bumping my own posts...)
  3. kirschbaum26

    kirschbaum26 New Member

    Dear Beth:

    Good news on finding a good doctor. I am kinda surprised that she dismissed the possibility of you having RA so quickly. I just wondered why she did not think you have RA? A low grade fever is sometimes a sign of RA.

    Anyway, glad you had a good visit...it is so much better for us if we feel we have a healthcare partner instead of a gatekeeper trying to keep us from getting well.

    Ingrid
  4. BethM

    BethM New Member

    The doc decided that I don't have RA because I have repeatedly had negative ANA blood tests, for RA and Lupus. I don't have enough other symptoms to determine RA at this time, so we are letting that go. If other things develop, she will reconsider, I am sure.

    It will be interesting to see what the hand x-rays show, as RA can show up in the type of joint damage that is there.

    My mom's doctors are still arguing whether she has RA, because her blood work is also negative, but the damage to one of her hips indicated RA, as does the damage in her wrist.

    I think it is an inexact science.

    Meanwhile, resting my thumb with the splint the doc gave me has helped a lot today.

    Thanks for your reply!
    Beth.