Rheumatoid arthritis similar symptoms?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by tamsyn, Jul 28, 2014.

  1. tamsyn

    tamsyn Member

    Hi! I'm wondering about rheumatoid arthritis...for many years I've had a diagnosis of ME/CFS, from a reputable clinic, and this diagnosis has always seemed a very good fit with my symptoms. I never doubted it was the right diagnosis. Lately however, I've been developing new symptoms. I've 'always' (since getting ME) had burning nerve pain in my feet and hands, and nerve pain in my legs. But now I'm getting sore finger joints, some swelling in finger joints, swollen sore knees, sore feet (painful to walk), a sore elbow, morning stiffness in back, pelvis...seems like joints have become an issue when they never used to be. Is this just new aspects of ME? Or am I developing a joint inflammatory disease such as rheumatoid arthritis? Does anyone else have a diagnosis of both? Or do you have the one diagnosis of ME but also get the joint problems? Thanks for your thoughts!
  2. TigerLilea

    TigerLilea Active Member

    I have had CFS/ME for 23 years now. The joint pain and stiffness just started over the past couple of years. My guess is that it is hormone related as I am now almost 3 years postmenopausal. I don't think that it has anything to do with my CFS/ME.
  3. tamsyn

    tamsyn Member

    Interesting...I am 18 months into menopause myself...

    Have you had any testing done for arthritis? Do you get any swelling?
  4. TigerLilea

    TigerLilea Active Member

    It's very common for women to start getting arthritis once they reach menopause. Estrogen helps to keep it at bay but once your estrogen levels start dropping the symptoms start flaring up. I've had testing done and it isn't rheumatoid but there are over 100 different types of arthritis. I don't get any swelling, but my knuckles are getting huge so my rings don't fit anymore. My fingers are very stiff in the morning and when I do things like gardening, my hands go numb in the night and I have to wear a night time splint. Also using the computer for long periods of time really bothers my fingers now. I'm also finding that I can't get up and down off the ground so easily anymore. I swear sometimes I look like a 100 year old person when I'm trying to get up. I just started doing Yoga and I'm finding that really hard to do. I think I would have found it much easier to do even three years ago. :eek: My legs are very stiff first thing in the morning so going up and down stairs isn't so easy anymore either. :(
  5. TigerLilea

    TigerLilea Active Member

    Jamin, my mom had the old-style surgery. They don't do the surgery here in BC that you had done. It is considered too experimental and they don't know the long term effects yet. My mom was lucky and has very little problems with her hip now. She does get the occasional pain near the surgical site, but nothing compared to pre-surgery. My sister's ex-MIL had the same surgery and every once in a while her hip pops out and she has to have it reset, but other than that, it's been great for her also. Sorry that you are having so much trouble with yours; it isn't what you expect when you have the surgery done. :eek:
  6. IanH

    IanH Active Member

    You are probably developing fibromyalgia. this is a common development of ME/CFS. However RA is also a possibility but it doesn't sound typical of RA to develop in this way. You should research the symptoms of FM here on PH as a first step.

    FM always seems like a joint problem, it is only after years of it do people realize it is not a joint problem per se.
    The problem lies in the inflammatory state of the tendons. If you press around the joints and up and away from the joints along the tendons you should experience more pain as you press on the tendons. This is the typical response in FM. Over time this causes more stiffness of the joints, again making it seem arthritic - because joint flexibility is a function of tendon and muscle flexibility. Of course over time, because of the increasing stiffness the joints are affected. This is why it is soooooo important to exercise in FM.
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2014
  7. tamsyn

    tamsyn Member

    Thanks to all for their replies. Ian, I think you're really right; I do actually already have a diagnosis of Fibro as well as the ME/CFS...but I tend to overlook my Fibro because the ME has caused me far more grief, and because my doc only discusses tender points in regard to Fibro. But what you said about tendons is absolutely true; it's not just my joints that are sore but all the tendons leading away from them just like you said. I especially notice that in the tendons from my knees up into my upper leg, and the tendons from my elbows into my upper arms. So it probably is the good ol' Fibro flaring up. oh joy :) Again, thanks to all for replying; this board keeps me sane, let's me know I'm not alone, and I am always impressed with the pool of knowledge and experience!
  8. tamsyn

    tamsyn Member

    Yoga, yikes. I tried it during the early years of my illness but it was totally too much. Now, about 12 years later, I am doing so much better overall. I thought I'd give yoga another try. Oh boy. Class one, I had pain and insomnia for 24 hours, class two I had pain and insomnia for 48 hours, class three for about three days, and class four sent me into a total flare that I am still in, six weeks later. Strange because during class it seems okay... and I love the meditation part of it. But I have accept that my body does not think there is anything gentle or healing about yoga. My body, in fact, thinks that yoga is terrible! Disappointing, but I did promise my body years ago that I would always listen to it with respect, so no more yoga.
  9. RadioFM

    RadioFM Active Member

    The hyper reactive immune system and overlapping autoimmune diseases in FM?
  10. healthystuff

    healthystuff Member

    Thanks for these information
    RadioFM likes this.