So I saw the consultant today. I was diagnosed 7 months ago but have been unable to tolerate four dmards. Hydroxycholquinine. Methotrexate, sulfasalizine and leflunomide. The consultant is happy the level of side effects were such that taking the drugs was not an option.
The next step would be biologics however it seems my Hospital which I feel like naming and shaming operates a severe qualification process. This includes having inflammation and preferably erosion in at least 90% of joints scored on DAS plus a high CRP marker. No matter what swelling I have my inflammatory markers are always normal. My feet are also much worse than my hands but don't contribute to the score. The consultant had great fun pushing the fluid around in my knee and saying look at that but my knees won't count.
The upshot of this - although I have active disease in numerous joints I will now receive no treatment at all as my options have been exhausted. I have been put on a waiting list for an ultrasound currently four month wait in the hope this might show the inflammation clearly present.
Even if I do then reach the previous 5.1 a funding letter will still have to be written.
The consultant says ideally by the time I get a scan my joints will be damaged and I qualify.
So I will let that one sink in. Because "I have failed on four dmards" I now have no option but to let my disease progress until there is irreparable damage to my joints at which point I might qualify for another drug.
So much for the big fuss about early diagnosis. I might as well have not bothered and waited another year until they have to wheel me in there.
In other news the consultant also thinks I have fibromyalgia