How do you tell the difference between FMS & Rheumatoid Arthritis

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Misdiagnosed, Apr 24, 2003.

  1. Misdiagnosed

    Misdiagnosed New Member

    Hi there

    Started off thinking I had FMS but now my joints are being affected. Have thickened fascia around knuckles and now lumpiness around toe joints. Tendons are now like guitar strings, balls of feet are congested, muscles very tight and lumpy. Muscles don't respond properly - under hard lumps in muscle are hard fibrous

    What's the difference in these diseases - do they occur together. How do you know if it's one or the other or both.

  2. klutzo

    klutzo New Member

    See a Rheumatologist and have an RA Titer blood test done. He may want to rule out some other forms of arthritis as well. The hard lumps you mention could well be fibro in other areas, but lumps in knuckles and toes sound more like RA.
    35% of RA patients get Fibro at some point, but they are not the same at all. RA is inflammatory and is treated very differently from Fibro. BTW, if it turns out you do have RA, fish oil supplements have been shown to be of benefit for that, and some docs are experimenting with antibiotics to treat RA.
    Keep us posted,
  3. Misdiagnosed

    Misdiagnosed New Member

    I'm mystified as to what's really wrong with me and docs. haven't come up with anything conclusive yet except that I'm going through menopause and was severely oestrogen/progesterone deficient. Thyroid seems ok.

    One rheumatologist said I did have FMS, another said he thought I had a metabolic disorder - neither ran any tests and I'm not under their care.

    Am going to my GP Friday and will request RA Titer test as you suggest. Thanks for your reply

  4. kredca4

    kredca4 New Member

    When I was first sick, I thought maybe I had RA, along with other Condition's. I was seeing a Orthopedic Surgeon at the time, and he sent me to a Rhumotologist, and she dx me with FMS and OA, which the first Dr. thought. He aslo dx me with CMP, and that with the FMS is very similiar to what your describing, the combo of FMS and MPS, (now called CMP)
    you might check out that while your at the Doctor's.

    There's a book by Dr. Devin Starlanyl, about FMS/MPS, she also has a website with a wealth of information on the combo. just use your search engine and type in her Name and some links should lead you there.

    I just saw my, Ortho Doc today, and I have some cyst on my fingers, due to OA, not the FMS, but it is effecting the fascia in my hands, and I'm having a lot of pain.
    These nasty bumps can swell up, and also have what looks like a blister, but it's Not. The only thing that can be done, is to asperate it with a Needle, by a Doctor I should add. I'm not going to do this Yet.

    I told the Dr. if it gets worse, I'll make an early am appt. take 2 Xanax, a Vicodin and have the Hubby wheel me in, so he can stick the needle in. What a Chicken huh?
    Doc. said ok, He knows how I am, and he's not pushy.

    Only thing I have to watchout for is the blister popping, I have MVP, and I have to be careful of B. Infections, so I would have to go to the ER right away for them to do a simple surgical procedure.

    I have learned though my last few years of research, for answer's, that there are a Ton of Similiar symptom's, and it's best to have a Dr. check you out. The research comes in handy, so that you Know what the Dr's talking about, and I think it helps me to make better descions about my Treatment's.

    Please keep us Posted on your Dr.'s visit and what he/she thinks is the problem.