I was diagnosed with RA mid Feb and put on Hydroxychloroquine, Methotrexate and Predisnone. 12 weeks later the swelling had gone almost completely. Amazing! (I was weaned off the predisone a couple of weeks a go.)
However I've had a sore throat, cough and tightness of breath (which has been getting progressively worse over the last eight weeks), In the last couple of weeks I have a shortness of breath when doing any mild exertion, for example walking up stairs, and breathing deeply causes discomfort in my chest. (This isn't normal, as I've always been super fit and very active.) I have been getting excruciating headaches on average 4 days each week over the last month, and have mouth ulcers at the back of my mouth, my tongue is swollen, and now have a bad (chemical) taste in my mouth. I'm also nauseous and am wretching. Nothing that I try to eat makes it better. The fatigue is overwhelming, comes with no warning, and hits me like a wall. In general I feel awful. I'm using all my energy to try to carry on working which means I'm completely exhausted afterwards. As a friend I've become completely unreliable and seem to bail on everything.
The consultant thinks this may be caused by side effects of the drugs and has advised stopping the methotrexate and waiting until the side effects stop then restarting at a lower dose, which makes sense. However, I'm wondering how do I know if it's an infection, and my body can't fight it because my immune system is being suppressed?
I'd love to hear from any of you who have had similar experiences. What happens when you get ill, and how do you cope with it. Many thanks
I'm using all my energy to try to carry on working which isn't entirely successful and means I'm completely exhausted afterwards. The last few weekends and every evening I've spent largely horizontal (and not in a good way!)