Last night I watched a Disney movie with my son. It was Snow Dogs starring Cuba Gooding Jnr and James Coburn. It was the first time I became aware that James Coburn, the 'King of Cool', had RA. I noticed his poor hands had skewed into 'flippers' with this horrible disease. He suffered from it for over 20 years, but still lived into his 70's. From time to time I see what RA can do, particularly when I see older people who missed the modern drugs like sulfasalazine and methotrexate. My own mother for one. Her hands and her feet look so sore, I don't know how she has coped with the gradual deterioration as she never complains about it. Surely it must be such a painful process. I have two joints in my fingers which are very painful, so having every digit twisting and swelling must be agony. I would like to know why GPs who can see the physical effects of RA i their older patients have never tackled it and allowed the joints of their patients to be slowly destroyed. My mother's GP has never diagnosed her with RA, nor has he ever offered her DMARDs or anything else. He has told her that her problem is 'in her head'. She has told her doctor about her neck being stiff for 20 years, but has always been sent away with the same advice, that there is nothing wrong with her !
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