I’m fairly recently diagnosed (RF+ and anti-CCP+).
Is there any hope for the future?
Everything I read is just so bleak.
At the minute, I have few symptoms – no swelling, disability or fatigue – just a vague achiness which moves around (termed “palindromic presentation” on my records). I do have self-diagnosed Morton’s neuroma in both feet though.
My rheumatologist says the RA needs to be treated aggressively. Six months on HCQ has done nothing (other than reducing my RF and anti-CCP). I had to reduce my dose two months in as I was losing a lot of weight. My weight then stabilised. This week I have restarted the higher dose, but already my appetite has been affected and I cannot afford to lose any more weight. I have been advised to start Methotrexate – which absolutely terrifies me. I work 4-5 days a week and run a small animal rescue as well as having a home and family responsibilities. I’m not in a position to be able to take a couple of days out every week to recover from treatment. Nor could I bear to lose my hair. Seeing my reaction, the rheumatologist offered me Sulphasalazine as an alternative.
Has anyone with early RA and the above dire prognosis ever done well on just HCQ and Sulphasalazine? And is Sulphasalazine actually more dangerous than Methotrexate?
At 53, I feel my life is over, and whichever way I go now, it is all downhill. All I read is misery, pain, suffering, fear, hospitalisations, surgery, death.