sudden acute arthritis

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by valliali, Apr 29, 2009.

  1. valliali

    valliali New Member

    i am wondering if this is a common symptom in chronic fatigue?

    about four months after i became sick, i developed really swollen finger joints, with these small subcutaneous, pink and EXTREMELY painful nodules on my fingers. this lasted for about two months, then i was left with some stiffness and fingers curled in for another month or so. then it seemed the problem went away.

    this seems to be an unusual symptom to my doctors, which is why they keep saying i had or have a virus. i have tested negative for all herpes, epstein barr, cmv and others. i had not been sick for several months prior to the onset of all my symptoms. i also don't understand why, if the arthritis had been caused by a virus, it came on so much later than all my other symptoms, especially if i tested negative for the "chronic" type of viruses.

    i am wondering if anyone else knows potential causes of this -- is it "normal" for cfs/autonomic dysfunction? i do not have fibromyalgia, and i honestly don't really know that i have cfs. i have been diagnosed with cfs from a cfs specialist, one who is often discussed on this forum, but i don't really have fatigue. i have been sick for over two years, and would not complain about fatigue nearly as much as the host of other symptoms. i have some brain fog, but find my fog and fatigue to be totally relieved with rest and exercise. i don't fit the cfs diagnostic criteria, i don't think. but, no doctors can find any other diagnosis. i was told i had POTS, but didn't have a positive tilt table test for it. i got sick about a month after returning from africa, but my doctors feel that they have ruled out all those possibilities (?)

    i feel the the arthritis i experienced could separate the cause of my illness from a genetic problem, for example, from a viral/bacterial issue, which i am inclined to think it is.

    but i am also wondering if anyone knows if one could expect such an acute arthritic reaction from a methylation dysfunction? and i am especially curious as to why, if a genetic problem (like methylation) or autoimmune problem could have caused the arthritis, why it would come and go, and not progress???

    thank you all so much for any feedback. it's been two years, and i feel like i have NO answers, not even a diagnosis.
  2. Nanie46

    Nanie46 Moderator


    I would consider getting a western blot IgG and IgM, test #188 and #189 from Igenex lab in CA to test for a chronic borrielia burgdorferi infection....lyme disease.

    There is a good symptom list in the back of this booklet....

    Here is a great paper by a lyme expert....

    Lyme is a clinical diagnosis based on history and symptoms. It can be supported by labwork, but Lyme is NEVER ruled out based just on a lab test.

    If you have questions or would like further info you can leave a post for me on the Lyme board anytime.

    Hope you get answers.
  3. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    they have completely ruled out African Tick Bite Fever?

    Peace out,
  4. valliali

    valliali New Member

    hi, thanks guys!
    i did have an igenex test, which came back cdc negative - i only had a positive on 41 and an indeterminate on 31. i have to say, i am a bit skeptical of lyme's - not in its existence, just in its diagnosis - so it is truly my last resort. i am not comfortable with taking antibiotics long term, and i'm not even very comfortable with a lot of supplements. so i'm trying to rule out EVERYTHING before i go down that path, though i am open to trying it if nothing else makes sense. the reason i asked a question like this is to see if something like the arthritis i described fits a cfs or dysautonomia like condition. if it truly doesn't then i will know something else may be going on. if it does, then i can begin accepting this possible diagnosis so that i can try treating that condition before going on abx. but, like i said, if some of these symptoms just don't fit the puzzle, i am very open to accepting a lyme's diagnosis. i just want EVERYTHING else to not make any possible sense. otherwise i could go crazy looking for a diagnosis and trying to find a cure, when i should be accepting what i have and focusing on making that better. i took doxy as an antimalarial in africa, and would prefer not to be on abx again. it truly is a last resort if i still have NO answers.

    rafiki, i know that tick relapsing fever exists where i was living in west africa. there are many studies about a village in senegal, not far from the village where i lived. i also know i was bit by a tick there, which was embedded for days before i could remove it. i also know that about a week or two after that, i was really really ill. i had a very high fever and was in bed for three days. then it seemed that i completely recovered, and i was not sick at all until like four or five months later when all my other symptoms started to occur.
    i do not recall ever having a relapsing fever. i read that tick relapsing fever mimics malaria, and i definitely didn't have anything like that except for those couple of days. the publications i read about it made it seem that sufferers pretty much have constant fevers that come and go. the only unusual thing i noticed was that my body temperature actually lowered quite a bit (to around 96.5), but when i am exposed to the cold for awhile, then become warmer, it almost instantly shoots up to around 99.5-100. i become intensely flushed, and this will last for hours. then my body temperature will almost just as quickly lower itself, and i'll stop flushing. it's pretty bizarre, but it doesn't seem to be a spontaneous fever as much as a dysfunction in my body's ability to readjust its thermostat. i have never read or heard of this happening in anyone else so i have NO idea.

    thanks so much guys. i appreciate your suggestions so much. if anyone knows more about african relapsing fever, i'm interested to know if i should have more thorough testing. it just seems out of the hundreds of mosquito bites i received, and only one tick bite, i'd be more likely to have something mosquito-borne. but i can't rule anything out i haven't been tested for!
  5. Nanie46

    Nanie46 Moderator


    I can understand being skeptical of the diagnosis of lyme.

    It is one of the least understood diseases. There are sooo many Dr's who don't have a clue how to recognize or diagnose it.

    My Igenex western blot said CDC negative and Igenex negative but I have lyme because I had species specific bands. The CDC and Igenex negative results are only reporting criteria, not diagnostic criteria.

    If you read Dr Burrascano's western blot information on page 7 of this paper it may help...

    Also Dr C's western blot explanation is very helpful too....

    According to both of their explanations, they would consider your results significant because you have band 41 and 31. Band 31 is species specific to borrelia burgdorferi. Even an IND reading on a species specific band is significant.

    Sometimes bands 30-31 can cross react with viruses such as EBV. A 31 kDa epitope test can determine if band 31 cross reacted with a virus or not.

    This info is on the site.

    My LLMD says that an IND reading on a species specific band is like a doesn't matter how dark (mildly positive or strongly positive) the fingerprint is, because it's still the same fingerprint.

    Just keep this info in mind as you keep searching for answers.
  6. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    Many of us have a low "normal" body temp. and strange thermostatic instability but few of us had a febrile illness in West Africa. It just seems too coincidental to me. Also, arthritis with inflamation and swelling, as opposed to arthralgia, is not a symptom of ME/CFIDS.

    Of course, if ME/CFIDS is a post infectious illness, I suppose many things could trigger it which could also cause arthritis.

    If I were you, I would want to completely rule out persistent African tick borne illness and be screened for anything and everything known to be in the region. I'm not sure you can rule out a lingering infection, bacterial or viral, simply by virtue of the fact that you do not have fevers, relapsing or otherwise.

    I certainly hope you have access to a good infectious disease doc with a working knowledge of west Africa.

    Good luck to you, Valliali.


    [This Message was Edited on 04/30/2009]