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Do many of you have scleritis with your RA.

Mine started about 18 months before I was diagnosed with RA. 4 months before my RA diagnosis I was also diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and hypertension(2 1/2 year ago now).18 months ago I was having palpitations and tests showed I had SVT. A cardiologist told me I had a conduction disorder probably caused by RA. My rheumatoid factor was originally negative but in November it was positive. In February I had to go off sick as my fingers were swelling and blood vessels breaking in them. Since then I have been getting swelling and pins and needles in my hands and wrists(the joints themselves seem OK). I am also having twitching in my lower limbs. My eyes are red and painful for about 3 weeks of the month. I am experiencing a full feeling in my neck and arms when I walk uphill and an ache in my thighs. Just not sure if it is all due to RA . Just not sure if I will be able to go back to work as I don't seem to be improving....

5 Replies

I'm so sorry you are going through so much. Unfortunately I cannot offer any advice - I just wanted you to know that I feel so sad for you. RA's bad enough without all the other problems it can create.

Take care

Judi xxxxxxxx


So sorry to hear this think you need to speak to your GP. it seems you might well have several conditions x


Thankyou. Feels better just getting it down on paper. Off to a cardiac clinic tomorrow, will probably have another treadmill test. I am taking methotrexate, plaquenil folic acid and salazopyrin for the RA, ramipril, indapomide and bisoprolol for my blood pressure and metformin for the diabetes. The opthamologist wanted me to take ibrufen as well for the scleritis but my GP wont let me because of the hypertension.



I too have had scleritis. About 2 years before I was diagnosed with RA, I got episcleritis, which then developed into scleritis. I was on eye drops (every type they could think of!) and anti-inflammatory meds continuously. The doctors could not offer me any explanation as I had no other symptoms (I was 19 at the time) so RA wasn't suggested as it seemed unlikely. The eyedrops and painkillers did help (though not always!) but it made the flare ups less frequent.

Eventually the scleritis cleared, but a few months later my RA symptoms began. Once speaking to my consultant, I realised the RA seemed to be the cause of the scleritis. Since starting the RA medication, I haven't had a flare up of the scleritis, sometimes on a bad day I notice slight reddening in one eye, but no pain thankfully.

So hopefully your RA medication will help you the same way it helped me. How long have you been on the RA medication?



Hi Tracey,

mine also started as episcleritis 3 1/2 years ago. When I think back though about 20 years ago I had a red eye and then the opthamologist quizzed me on whether there was RA in the family. I started tests for RA 2 years ago after I woke up one morning unable to move. Again thinking back I have had flitting joint pain for years, it would usually clear after a few days or so or it was thought to be work related. I went to a physio years ago when I had what I thought was tennis elbow and she did grip tests etc(toldgrip wasn't good). I started on methotrexate in August after tests to exclude crohns had come back normal. I had raised ESR and CRP although RF was negative.My RF was positive in November and in December I started on salazopyrin and in January on plaquenil. When I saw the rheumatologist in May I asked ' was it RA'. My answer was yes( I kept thinking I was imagining it all). The medication doesn't seem to have made any difference to the scleritis. I have read that NSAIDand methotrexate together might help but awaiting a decision from the cardiologist as to whether I can take ibuprofen. I am also waiting for an appointment for nerve conduction studies as I have pins and needles feeling in hands and arms when using them and twitching an my legs. I asked my GP about vasculitis as I understand that can cause scleritis but he told me the readings of my inflammatory markers werent high enough. I had bloods for B12 recently and they came back at 186....which GP said was normal.


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