Help! Nuisance Nodule!

Happy 2017 to you!

I suspect many on here with severe RA have one or two nodules to speak of. A couple of years ago I had one removed from my knuckle because on occasion it got infected therefore making it sore.

My problem now is that I have a large one on my only mobile elbow and it is changing! It's about the size of a large grape and is becoming pointed in shape plus it feels different. I have noticed that my elbow feels more stress when I'm using it and is now clicking occasionally.

Has anyone else had experience of nodules on elbows and do you think it might interfere with the movement I have left? Or will it settle down of it's own accord?

Answers on a postcard please ....just kidding, here will do nicely, thank you! :D

Love, Legs x

9 Replies

  • Hi LindaLegs

    I have nodules on both my elbows .they are quite large and one is larger than the other.They are bigger than broad bean size but not as big as a small sprout.

    Most of the time they do not cause me any pain,but there are times when they do.However I am very aware of them,especially when I accidentally knock my funny bone! - Why it's called a funny bone I Really don't know ,as there is nothing at all that is funny about it as I am sure you well know.

    A couple of weeks before Xmas 2015 the nodule on my right elbow became even more enlarged ,was soft and squishy,and very sore..I was extra careful to try not to knock it against snything as it was also quite red and hot.

    One night sat in the house my hubby says you have something on your sleeve of your cardigan.I had a look and it,was the colour and consistency of toothpaste.I removed my cardigan and noticed that I had knocked the nodule and burst it.I continued to press it gently and more of the white "toothpaste" appeared .The nodule drained,went back to,it's normal size and the redness and pain stopped.I mentioned it to my GP when I saw him a few days later and he said it sounded like bursitis which is common with nodules.I have not had this happen again since.

    The nodules themselves don't interfere with the mobility of my elbows .My Elbow joints are stiff anyway but I can still extend both arms fairly well.

    I hope this info is of help to you,but at present I find them more unsightly than causing me physical pain..

    Take care.



  • Thank you so much for your very interesting reply Crusee ...though I'm glad I wasn't eating my tea when I read it!

    This ones shape has changed and is becoming pointed so I'm wondering if it's becoming infected. If it is I can't say I'm looking forward to the 'toothpaste' stage as you went through!

    I'm glad to hear it hasn't interfered with the mobility of your elbow as that's concerns me most because my other elbow is fixed.

    Due to this I am toying with the idea of having it removed but I shall see if it comes to a head and bursts first like your did.

    Thanks again for your reply and, yes, it did help.

    Love, Legs x

  • Sorry I didn't think about tea time but it didn't have an unpleasant odour to it thankfully.

    I don't know if all nodules behave like this as the one on my left elbow has never changed in size or shape,or developed a bursitis.

    When I mentioned it to the GP a few days later he gave me some antiseptic cream to apply to the site of the nodule to prevent any risk of infection.It obviously worked.

    Not wishing to labour the toothpaste point I was amazed just how much came from the nodule but it was just as well it did as it would have gone on hurting and swelling and hot and tender for a long time.So knocking my funny bone had a happy ending then.

    Take care of yourself and hope yours doesn't give you any more trouble.



  • Thanks Crusee, except my stomach turned again at the amount of toothpaste! I'm glad you got rid of the rubbish from it and it's settled down again.

    (Gee whiz I can't look at toothpaste now without thinking about your nodule! Lol!)

    Love, Legs x

  • Ew, almost put me off my semolina with banana! 😜

  • Ha ha Hector! My stomach just leaped up again's having a workout at the gym reading this thread!

    Love, Legs x

  • My nodule on wrist has gone since being on a Biological.

  • That's interesting 2210. I, too, am on biologics and haven't been able to inject for 2 weeks due to a bad cough so I'm now wondering if that's why my nodule is changing. I'm back to injecting tomorrow so it'll be interesting to see if it settles down once again.

    Love, Legs x

  • I have approximately 19 nodules on my fingers. None elsewhere that I know of. They only hurt when banged and the size and texture change frequently. (Otherwise, they are mainly just an irritant to my sanity.) My rheumatologist said they were due to the MTX and would go away now that I am on Arava. I had only 8-10 nodules when I was on MTX - which I stopped 11 months ago - so I think he doesn't know what he is talking about or he is a liar. :P I have had a nodule on my elbow (approx 5 months ago) that went away of its own accord. It reduced in size without having to squeeze anything out (ew, Crusee!). I just gave it gentle massages and made sure not to lean on it while it was there. Good luck, I hope it gets sorted out for you!

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