Subject: Re: Arthritis of the spine
Hi Michelle, I have just come on to the site and saw your post. Firstly welcome to the forum. Sorry to hear that Arther has bought you to it but you will find a lot of advice and help here with everyone. I have RA and OA, the OA for years and the RA for last 5-6 years. I have damage in all my spine and have many nerves pinched in the neck/cervical area with discs slipped etc etc. In the lumbar region I have much degeneration and disc problems. Firstly for the neck my Rheumy did the usual tests etc and told me that really i need surgery but I have a large artery too close to the spinal chord to do it and until I cant even hold a piece of paper he wasnt happy to operate as it is too dangerous, so he suggested I have Spinal anaesthetic/cortisone injections into the sernovial fluid between the discs to see how they go. I have had a series of 4 injections now over two weeks and whilst my arm is still numb and tingling (I dont think I will be rid of that) I have had a lot of pain relief in this area. I am on MTX, Humira and prednisone for the RA and also use Morphine patches every 3 days with Panadeine Forte up to 8 per day if I need them. This is used for both lots of Arthritis. I have lots of other meds too but these mostly for what you are asking. I still have pain and some days I am unable to move around but I am a lot lot better than I was.
Otherwise I use heat packs and cold packs (for swelling) and rub a natural oil that is for pain into my back each day This oil doesnt do anything other than to make my back feel warm and rested. Its a comfort feeling. Try not to either sit too long or exercise too long and as too much or not enough of either can make the pain a lot worse. It is so so hard to keep your sense of humour, but I truly believe that we must keep a positve mind and outlook and try to have a great sense of humour even on the hard days. LOL Im having a bad day today, dont think Im too positive but if you can it does really help. Also if you let the people of this site help and support you you will not feel so alone. I have found everyone to be so friendly and helpful and I have learnt heaps since I have been coming here,even tho I havent actually posted a request yet or had any replies, I feel so much better.
I suggest you go back to your doctor and have a chat or ask to be referred to a consultant or Rheumy as there is so much out there to help and so many medications to try. It will take a while to find the best combination of meds for your particular pain - we are all different - but your doctor should help you to find what works.
Lynn B (above) suggested Jill may be able to help you. I dont know her but I have read some wonderful and very helpful comments from her over the site. Hopefully she will be back soon to help you too. I hope this helps. Go Well and take care. Rose X