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Date: 14.06.2010
From: Pam

Subject: RA and eye/skin conditions??

Hi all, I have just found this site and wondered if anybody here has experienced problems with their eyes or skin? I am a 26 yr old female with RA, diagnosed as juvenile arthritis at the age of 14. Mainly affects my wrists and fingers and both wrist joints have become fused with little movement. I was taking methotrexate and diclofenac but gradually weaned off and stopped altogether about 3 years ago so currently don't take any meds.

Since stopping the methotrexate have felt much better - less fatigue and stomach pains etc and as I haven't had a flare up in some time the diagnosis is that the illness is in remission. However i get flu-like symptoms (aches/pains, etc) and often feel fatigued. A couple of years ago i started getting boils on my skin. They came and went i didnt think much of it until last september i had a particularly bad episode. Haven't had any since (touch wood) but then one day last week i woke up with red swollen eyes. Gradually got worse and accompanied by splitting headaches - after trying various eyedrops i eventually went to moorfields eye hospital they diagnosed increased eye pressure/inflammation which they said was caused by my arthritis.

This has led me to think that all these ailments are connected to an underlying immune disorder related to my RA. I know i'm being a bit whingey and many people on here probably have it a lot worse than me but i'm just wondering if anyone has had similar symptoms and what they have used to treat it? I feel like i don't really know what is going on with my body and everytime i see a doctor it is more a form filling exercise than anything else - any advice?!
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Date: 14.06.2010
From: Sally

Subject: Re: RA and eye/skin conditions??

hi Pam, sounds unpleasant. Worth checking with your rheumy as might be all part of the same thing. There's an auto immune blood test they can do - don't think it is normally done as my rheumy has said he wants to do it and I first got ill over a year ago. I think my gp thought they would have done it when I was admitted to hospital but apparently not. I'm a little bit confused about RA/inflammatory arthritis (I am sero negative) and auto immune thing. I thought they were both auto immune illnesses but am told not. Can anyone elucidate?
xx
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Date: 15.06.2010
From: Verity

Subject: Re: RA and eye/skin conditions??

Pam, Im 24 and have had RA since Iwas 6. Theres a condition of the eyes called Sjogrens syndrome that is swelling of the eyes. it must be directly likned to Arthritis coz I used to have to be checked at the hosp regularly when I was younger. They were looking for inflammation at the back of the eyes. Some of the symptoms are dry itchiness. Mine wore off and I dont think theres any issues with it anymore but its a possibility.
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Date: 15.06.2010
From: Patsy

Subject: Re: RA and eye/skin conditions??

Hi Pam, I'm 41 and for the past 18 years have had inflammation in my eye in the form of ititis & posterior scleritis. I've been on oral prednisolone for 10 years along with a variety of immunosupressant drugs. In the past 5 months I've developed inflammation in multiple joints and have been diagnosed with inflammatory arthritis.Saw my eye consultant today as it's flared up - again - I'm having IV steroids over 3 days to get it under control. I also take Methotrexate but he wants to put me on Anti TNFs (not too sure what they are)as the inflammation isn't controlled. He told me today inflammation in my eye and joints is all connected. I'm feeling pretty fed up and scared so I can sympathise with you. That's my rant over, I'm having a cake now to console myself!!!!!
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Date: 18.06.2010
From: Verity

Subject: Re: RA and eye/skin conditions??

Good consolation treat Patsy ; ) xx
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Date: 18.06.2010
From: sally

Subject: Re: RA and eye/skin conditions??

Verity! How are you doing?
I've been really up and down these past weeks. Sometimes can hardly move and others fine. Don't know what the triggers are.
Are you in touch with Jill? If you are, can you tell her she is sorely missed? Thans.
xx
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Date: 19.06.2010
From: Verity

Subject: Re: RA and eye/skin conditions??

Hey Sally!
Im doin well thanks : )
Sounds like they need to get you on proper meds. Have you spoken to the docs about anti TNF?
Havrnt spoken to Jill much recently but Ill leave her a msg on fb from ya : )
xxx
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Date: 19.06.2010
From: Sally

Subject: Re: RA and eye/skin conditions??

hi Verity, glad you are doing ok. Don't think I'm bad enough for anti TNF sadly! Still on low dose of mtx but don't want to go up until I've had my liver checked out - been having high results for some things. I'll get there!
I guess I should go on fb - hmmm!
take care.
xx
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Date: 21.06.2010
From: Abbie

Subject: Re: RA and eye/skin conditions??

I suffer increased eye pressure due to a neurological disease. Where there are no symptoms of this (there would be for your inflamation though) there are various drops you can be prescribed and various diuretic pills. Good luck with it! Go well XXX
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