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Getting worse

I've written on here once before and really appreciated the help and support I got. I have RA in my knees and I'm curious as to whether it is able to spread to just one finger? I have an appointment on Thursday. I'm on sulfasalazine and apparently it's not tackling the problem, I'm also on naproxen and that doesn't seem to work. I'm worried about going on the methotrexate because I'm only 19 and I know it can effect your having baby abilities, I realise the chance is small but it's still too much of a risk. Is there anything else that works? I was recommended to try accupunture but I'm not convinced it will work. Are there other drugs which work? And what are the best ones? All the doctors I've spoken to never seem very helpful or willing to talk about it but I'm sure Thursday they will as I will definitely bring it up. If you can help that would be great. Thanks.

7 Replies

Hi jessicacookieninja,

there is certainly a lot to consider when you develop RA at your age and worrying about the effects that the drugs may have on your ability to have children is obviously something that is of concern to you. We have a lot of information on our website about the drugs that are used in RA and we also have a section on pregnancy and parenthood. I have put links to this information below for you:

Hopefully when you have your appointment on Thursday your rheumatology team will be able to talk to you about your concerns. If you would like any more information then please feel free to call the helpline on:

0800 298 7650 Monday to Friday 9.30am - 4.30pm

Hope this helps,

Best wishes

Beverley (NRAS Helpline)

1 like

Hi Jessica

I'm not sure if it spreads but I also ha RA in my back, shoulders, toes and fingers. I'm 46 and my hands look like an old ladies. I wish I had started some for of drug earlier to prevent it from becoming so bad now. Winter is unbearable.

I wish you luck in finding the right drug for you. I have been on MTX for over a year and have had no problems.( I have 2 children so I didn't have that to worry about)

Take care and best of luck on Thurday.



Hiya, I have RA in all my fingers, (+ other joints), but one finger is much worse than the others & has been for quite a while. Hopefully you will get some good answers on Thurs.


Hi Jessica

So sorry to hear you have RA at such a young age. But you must get your rheumatologist to get you sorted ASAP, because it is usually said that if you are of a young age and get the right treatment early it can be very beneficial and even possibly be well controlled. Read up as much as you can (from respected websites such as NRAS) and write down anything you need to know more about, to ask at your next appt.

GJ x


Yes, a flare in one odd joint is possible :( also I delayed taking methotrexate for similar reasons and I was offered hydroxychloroquine when I was unable to take sulfasalazine as I became allergic to it. Hope you get sorted with the right medication for you.


Thank you so much everyone! I'll definitely write down questions and make a list of the different drugs I want to try. I just hope I find the right mix of drugs.



RA moves around. It affects all of your joints, just not all of them at once. I had certain fingers affected, certain toes, the bottoms of my feet, a knee, a shoulder, etc. Right now I don't have any affected joints, but am getting other symptoms, be them due to RA or the medication (nodules, fatigue, etc).

If you're not planning to get pregnant in the next year or so, you may want to give methotrexate a go. My rheumatologist tells me that MTX is something you can go off of any then immediately get pregnant (safely). I don't know if that's completely true, but it's less scary than Arava which you need to be off at least 2 years before getting pregnant. Good luck with whatever decision you make. I hope you get some relief soon.


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