As we are continually getting newcomers to the site we thought it might be a good time to highlight an issue that has concerned us previously about the overly medical nature of some of the questions posted. While this site is a fantastic source of support and shared experiences, queries requiring specific medical advice should always be directed to a healthcare professional, and ideally to your own healthcare team (such as GP, rheumatologist or rheumatology nurse).
Which drugs are safe to take alongside your DMARDs, for example, we would consider a specific medical query. Of course there may be some very general guidelines but specific medical advice for someone would need to take into account things like their medical history, and any other drugs taken for unrelated conditions etc which only a member of their healthcare team would have access to. As a helpline we would always urge callers to contact a healthcare professional with specific queries like this, about their medications or drug interactions. However, asking for other’s experiences on a particular drug can often be really interesting and this is exactly the sort of thing HU is here for.
It is important when phrasing a question or response to remember that this forum is used by patients, rather than healthcare professionals so answers will be based on their experiences, and this may not be relevant to your own personal situation. On the whole, where medical queries are posted on here, many of you respond with the suggestion of seeking advice from a medical professional which we’re really pleased to see. But unfortunately this is not always the case.
So just a quick reminder of the guidelines that, ‘content on this site does not replace the relationship between you and doctors or other healthcare professionals nor the advice you receive from them.’ Talking about your personal experiences is important and we encourage this, but please bear in mind the individual nature of RA and encourage people to talk to their health professionals about their concerns.
Overall the questions, blogs and responses are all very positive and supportive, and we hope this will continue. If you have any questions about the above, please feel free to contact me either by replying to this post or sending a private message if you prefer.