How was your,psoriatic arthritis diagnosed? - Beyond Psoriasis

Beyond Psoriasis

2,334 members395 posts

How was your,psoriatic arthritis diagnosed?


Hello everyone, I'm new here and I have posted on other forums but my question is specifically for this one .

I have long standing joint pain in fingers, toes but also pain in my Achilles and ankles .

I have toe nails that aren't nice looking and one very horrible . Sometimes my fingers look like sausage shape described and my toes on which my horrible nails are on certainly do .

My heels also looks,like that .Dry skin or .....

My question is this, how does,psoriatic arthritis get diagnosed ? Is it by bloods ? Or history and bloods? And how long did it take you to get a diagnoses ?

Many thanks ,

Becky .

15 Replies

Hi Balletmum

I was diagnosed 2 years ago with PsA.

It started in my hands and predominantly my feet but has since spread to other joints.

There is no specific blood test as such I was told but an MRI scan of my feet showed bone erosion and inflammation. The bone erodes slightly differently in PsA. I also had nail involvement but very few lesions therefore wasn't even aware I had psoriasis.

It is treated very much like RA would be treated but a rheumatologist will diagnose.

You certainly sound as though it's PsA...achilles heel, sausages fingers etc.

I started on various disease modifying drugs but I am now on Biologics therapy.

Hope you get a diagnosis soon x

Balletmum71 in reply to Sanbanan

Thank you for your reply, yes the steroids have helped but now I'm off of them and guess what , the swelling and pain are back .

I wasnt sure if my heel looked like just hard skin, because I don't have any other signs of psoraisis on my skin .

I don't have any inflammation in my blood work and rheumatoid faxtor is negative . Just my ANA is positive .

So I guess when I see the Rheumatologist next week I'll tell him all of this . Maybe I'll be surprised nicely . I'm just very tired, quite low and in pain - like everyone else on here .

Eileen, do you have psoriatic arthritis?

Thank you too to all who have replied .

Becky .

Eileen01 in reply to Balletmum71

Yes i do bex..its

Hi becky...blimey all i can say is snap...u need to see a rheumatologist..and get bloods done...u have all the signs same as me...prednisolone really helped me..doc told me that it doesnt help other forms of arthritus..was a clue as well..good luck hope u get sorted ..xx

Hi Becky,

Welcome to Beyond Psoriasis,

I'm sure you'll find lots of support and information from fellow sufferers here on our friendly Forum.

Take care



My history was similar to yours at the start, and I agree with comments above.

Initially my GP referred me to a rheumatologist (2010) as I had had psoriasis since a child (I am now 53) and was suffering from sore joints (neck, lower back, one shoulder, both elbows, both wrists, one knee and one ankle) and swollen joints (fingers, knuckles, wrist and elbow joints). The joints pain had been ongoing at that time for about 5 years.

While you can diagnose rheumatoid arthritis with blood tests, it it not usually possible to do this with PsA. I did have bloods tested, and continue to do so monthly, but this is more to ensure that medecines are not have a detrimental effect.

I was put on prednisalone, a high dose initially which reduced to a holding dose once pain was under control.

I went through a series of medecines, but none made much of a difference, and I reacted badly to a few of them. For example, I found I was allergic to methotrexate (oral and injection) and Sulfalazine.

I am now on my 4th biologic, as I have reacted to the first 3. I am self-injecting Stelera on a regular basis. I have found the Stelera to be very good, but only lasts about 75% of the duration it is meant to.

I have not found that changing diet has been very helpful, but an osteopath and acupuncturist has helped my back. My main issues are high pain levels in joints and overwhelming fatigue. I would recommend a close relationship with your rheumatologist.

Balletmum71 in reply to Paul9

Thank you to everyone who has replied to me .

I saw the Rheumy ontuesday who said I don't know what's wrong, but your Achilles are knackered, and the fact that steroids helped is a good clue that it's autoimmune .

He has ordered very specific and detailed blood tests, ( not sure what ) , and MRI scan to see where the inflammation is .

Pain levels, swelling and stiffness are now hitting more fingers,toes and knees . Elbows are chiming in in the last 24 hours .

Breathing and chest pain increased .

He's also querying Hughes' syndrome .

Ohhh bless i was told by my gp that autoimmune conditions normally go in clumps i also have vitiligo which apparently is autoimune too..he says you rarely just get one...shoot me now lol..xx

Arggghhh , knee pain, and wrist and finger pain , then this annoying cough and a sore windpipe .

Went to GP today to see if they could help me out a bit . They don't want to put me on steroids as it will mess up the diagnoses apparently. That's fair enough

The dr

Poked at my knees and said ooo they are swollen aren't they . I think you just have a cough . I said I've had this since a chest infection I had in JJuly and although the infection has gone this "bark" hasn't .

Still waiting for scan date and been put on anti inflammatory drugs and codeine . I know they have to be sensible but I came away feeling low and now I'm wheezy again as well . Apart from a scalp which looks like bad dandruff, I have no signs of psoriasis , just joint pain which sometimes swells, hurts like well hurts and makes me feel and look stupid .

Sorry for rant , I'm just fed up .

Hope,others are okay .,

Becky .

Update, my bloods show positive ANA and elevated CRP and ESR .

Consultant looking at inflammatory arthritis and mixed connective tissue disease .

I m going for an MRI scan using contrast dye .

How is everyone ?


Hi Becky, have you got any more news?

I'm waiting for my next appt to hopefully go onto biologics. Was on mtx until recently, and still on arava. My symptoms include achilles tendonitis, swollen left ankle and foot, 5 sausage toes (since January) sore wrists, elbow, swollen knee at the back, and jaw/throat/ear soreness. I dont have psoriasis (yet..) but rheumy happy to diagnose on the other symptoms.

Also high ESR and CRP - CRP not as high but still elevated.

My main issue is not being able to walk very far, and this affects my life a lot, I have small children and am not that old. I limp and its horrible and embarrassing. So roll on drugs that work!

Hope you are feeling good today :)

Jefflin in reply to Jefflin

I also had positive ANA and something called MBL? low.

Hello Jefflin , thank you for your question .

I had my scan on Monday and it was painful as the position they had to put me in .They don't tell you anything afterwards although something was muttered abt the ends of my fingers .

My Rheumy appt is on 15November .

I'm off work as I have been v stiff in my elbow and shoulder .I also now have locking forefingers ! I also think I have a viral infection and am just washed right out .

I can only imagine how tricky being with small children can be and so frustrating .

Mine are older now .

Yes on my bad days I limp .

I have found dry skin patches between my fingers too and painful eyes and chest .

I suppose as my Ana is low and CRP isn't high high I'm worried I'll be dismissed or told it's fibro even tho he said it was unlikely as I don't have the symptoms ...I m like most people worried abt being taken seriously ...

I'm glad your meds help .Thank you for replying .it can get very lonely when you are in pain and you look reasonably OK !

Becky .

I've been reading your story and am keen to find out how your doing? Hope things are at least a little better for you. X

Sorry to keep you in suspense ..

I've been diagnosed with mixed connective tissue disease . Lupus and Rheumatoid symptoms being the main ones with scleroderma .

I have wrist and foot inflammation and damage

To start steriods and Hydroxychloroquine.

I have another infection so can't start steriods :(

How are you ?

Becky .x

You may also like...