Does anyone have muscular arthritis?: a newish friend... - NRAS

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Does anyone have muscular arthritis?


a newish friend has told me that she has muscular arthritis. I'd like to know more about it. According to Internet you can have ra and this. It'd be handy to know anyone's experience


19 Replies

Hi Cathie, haven't come across this before. I wonder if it is actually referred pain from the joints? I do get pain in my arm muscles but that is usually when the shoulder joints are playing up. My understanding of RA is that it is your immune system which attacks you and causes problems with the joints causing them to become deformed etc. I am aware the surrounding tissue swells as well (as I know from my shoulder problems - referred to by my GP as soft tissue damage) so I suppose it could affect the muscles with the swelling but I am doubtful if the muscles actually get arthritis whether Rheumatoid or Osteo.

It would be interesting to read the views of others. LavendarLady x

I"m wondering too - this was over a coffee as part of a longer conversation and I can't find the website I turned up afterwards. I will persist.

I think she was talking about muscular rheumatism which wiki defines as fibromyalgia.

I'm really wanting to know how to be appropriately considerate towards my new friend. She isn't one of those people who has twinges and equates them to my RA, as two people in her family had RA, but many years ago, so she knows very well whats involved when its not treated.

LavenderLady I hope you're feeling better today? XX

in reply to cathie

Hi Cathie, yes better today thank you. Saw physio yesterday and she is very pleased at the added movement in my right shoulder. left is still bothering but she has told me to do the same exercises for that as I did and do for the right shoulder.

I think with your friend, just be your usual sympathetic self and listen to what she says - it probably helps her just being able to talk about it. We all know it is easier to talk about the RA when we feel down and helps to get it out of our systems.

I have heard of muscular rheumatism but didn't think it was called fibromyalgia which i think is a different disease. Do bear in mind that Wikipedia is not always very accurate or up to date.

My cousin has had ME for many years and spends a lot of time on and off in a wheelchair but she has still managed to raise 4 children, do two university degrees, get involved with arts and crafts, and go abroad regularly with her sisters. She wears me out! And she never moans at all. LavendarLady x

in reply to LavendarLady

Aren't people amazing. I hope you continue to feel better over the weekend - and beyond...


Hi Cathie - isn't this what is known as Polymyalgia Rheumatica? I think it is. My physio got in a muddle when my GP first referred me as having polyarthritis and she then explained what the muscular one was to me. Re being considerate to your friend - I don't think any of us with RA have a monopoly on pain - there are many conditions that are potentially just as painful and as serious re long term effects so just be kind to her as you expect your friends to be to you and I'm sure everything will be good between you both.

My sister's best friend has had MS since she was a teenager and is profoundly deaf and she is such a star - she never moans about herself and is always so kind and considerate to others which makes us all feel very protective towards her. I often think of her when I'm indulging in any kind of self pity and it really helps me keep perspective! TTx

That's very nice Tilda, thanks. I suspect that people who have really had health problems complain less - with some notable exceptions. My mother always made the most of hers - but now its visited on me I do understand more.

I think a reply from Beth has gone missing. I got a notification but no message above!

Oh yes and on one of the web sites which I've now lost, there was an auto-immune link between RA and muscular rheumatism. Don't we just need this!!

Hi all, there are conditions which affect the soft tissues within the body, one which I have is called Enthesitis, which works hand in hand with RA and AS causing pain and inflammation where the ligaments and tendons attach to the bone. It can be extremely painful, I'm actually having a flare at the moment in my legs and my shins/knees and feet are so painful I can't weight-bare at all and today my hands/arms are joining in...... Oh bugger, that's me laid up again!

Another condition is called Muscular Arthritis, it's apparently quite rare, I don't know much about it but I'd guess it's probably just as painful as many of the other arthritic conditions. I've added a link for further information.

Beth xx

Oh thanks!

Hope you can take a bit of a rest today.

I made a fish pie yesterday evening for supper and by the end I was so tired I had to sit down. Lack of anti-tnf and mtxate for two weeks now. XX


Re your mum Cathie - she probably did complain and moan a lot to you because we have to offload on someone and if they love us and are our offspring then they are most likely to be the ones who get dumped on!

She maybe didn't go on to her friends about her RA so much? My mum went on about loads of emotional stuff and negative stuff to me because my sisters are both deaf and my dad was hopeless on all that (it was usually him she wanted to moan about!) it and he then died anyway so I was the obvious recipient of all her woes.

But she tended to be overly robust about health related stuff and would ignore it - which is undoubtedly why she died of something which would have been very easy to diagnose and treat if she'd only gone to her GP! I'm more like my dad physically and get quite introspective and preoccupied by all this health stuff and I probably do bore my kids if I'm in pain (to get them to help out and be kinder etc) but I try not to tell my friends much or I fear I'll lose them! The boys will probably say "she did go on about this RA to us a lot!" although I don't think i do but it's hard to see ourselves as others do isn't it?! TTx

My mother didn't complain as much as impose a particular approach to life on us all. We werent close enough for that. Part of a particular approach to life. You had to tiptoe around her, not cause friction etc - which wasntpossible fir a teenager in the 60s. So myyouthful rebellion was interpreted as an onslaught on her health. I think esp with computers we have acess to more outlets than her generation. But she did have determination, on one if the few occasions she came to see me in London we waited quite a while to get intothe Renoir blockbuster at the Hayward she really wanted to see.

All quite a long time ago!


Hmm it's interesting how we view our parents once they are gone isn't it Cathie? I worry a little that my OH will feel really guilty for not going down to Devon to see his father before he dies but I really don't see why he should? I just don't want him to feel regret about it but on the other hand I don't look back with much regret- apart from not living closer to my mum after my dad died a bit. I wonder what my mum would have made of my having RA - I think she'd have been delighted at least by the way I'm losing a lot of weight as that really preoccupied her. She might have even been supportive of the RA for bringing the weightloss about absurd as that may sound? She was a great fan of stoicism and courage in adversity.

I came across a link that Christine/ Tinwoman posted on a different thread re MTX side effects today and it was a facebook blog of a woman with Polymyalgia Rheumatica which she describes as a rare type of RA and she takes MTX and steroids for it. Might that be what your new friend is suffering from? TTX

I'll have to ask her again about her muscular rheumatism!

On regret - such a difficult one. I have been going up and down to Wiltshire for years now thinking that I don't want to be left with regret. I think we have to do what we feel comfortable with. Its such a difficult time isn't it with ageing parents. I suppose I'm guided by what I would like for myself, even though I would not behave as they has done - I hope!

Its a beautiful day here, but I'm going for an afternoon snooze as I'm weary after I took my methotrexate last night and we're out to dinner this evening. Bit of a waste of a beatufil breezy afternoon, but I've put the washing out and that'll have to do!



This is very interesting, as I recall seeing one of the diagnoses on my lab order sheet as Rheumatism, and I thought that term odd, as I thought it was an old term for what is now known as Fibromyalgia. so I wondered why the rheumy was using it.

Muscular arthritis has to be a misnomer, as arthritis means inflammation and stiffness of the joints, according to Webster's dictionary.

Polymyalgia does cause muscular pain, as does Fibromyalgia. sounds like the new friend might need further testing to differentiate her diagnosis. or maybe it doesn't matter, as treatments may be similar to all the remedies we have used. Maybe she can post on here and she can describe what is happening. L.xx

i have weakness and stiffness in my muscles and a lack of endurance and they shake with alot of activity. i have yet to be diagnosed, but my rheumatologist said RA can attack the muscles but this is new to me, for 7yrs now. It's discouraging that it has to affect the muscles also :( i've had RA for 20 yrs.

My friend has had this condition for some time (many years) but I don't think she will want to post on here. She wasn't actually asking for advice - I was - because I've only known her for a short while and was trying to understand her illness. I'll look for another opportunity to get a precise definition but she used the term muscular rheumatism and none of the other terms referred to above.

Nancy's description is quite close, I know my friend suffers from chronic fatigue, with which we can all empathise.


I wrote a longer response but the system chucked me out and I lost my message. My friend wouldn't want to come on the discussion list, but she has been diagnosed for some time and described her condition as muscular rheumatism and none of the above! So I will have to tweak out more information won't i!

Confusion - sorry! I don't know what is going on but am going away now!!

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