Backache again

Since dropping to 10mg my back pain has returned. This is not like a "normal" backache, but stabbing pain that takes my breath away when I have been sitting or standing still for even a couple of minutes, and radiates from my ribs to down my right leg. It's not exactly the same as what I had last year prior to diagnosis as I am not as stiff in the morning and can actually put my own socks on! But as I have also had head pain I didn't want the GCA creeping up again. Managed to get a phone call from the GP who sent me for a blood test since I haven't had one since February. Results have come back ESR "normal", CRP "borderline, no action required". First appointment I can get to actually meet with the GP is next Friday. I don't think the pain will let me wait that long, so will have to keep trying to get an emergency appointment, which means ringing at 8:15 and having the phone on repeat dial until 9:00 and then being told all the appointments have gone usually!

6 Replies

Have you got Bowen practitioner in your area? What you are describing sounds like the referred pain I get due to myofascial pain syndrome which is often found alongside PMR. It is often masked by higher doses of pred but then (re)appears as the dose is reduced. I found Bowen therapy invaluable to keep it under control.


I should try to get a more exact count for your ESR and CRP. I usually have a battle with receptionists at my surgery about this but GP has now put a note on my screen to say that I can be given the count and now I do I see that even an ESR which was up 15 points from 20 was marked 'no action required' which is not very reassuring. I think that as we're effectively controlling our own medication and having to wait ages to see a GP even with a possible GCA flare like yours, at least we should be privy to our own results. Do hope you manage to sort this out quickly

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Any rise above normal can be the prelude to a flare-up. Perhaps try and get a second test done now to see if there is any change up or down. Do you have a walk-in centre you can go to? If you explain to them they can refer you back to your doctor and get you in where you can't get in. Worth a try


I have the same sort of comments regarding my ESR and CRP. The most worrying was my GP had wriiten "CRP improved" when it had gone up! When I told her she said it was only a little, I pointed out it had gone up 60% Her reply was, Well if you want to look at it like that!


And as we said at the time - any RISE in CRP is a BAD THING! It is meant to be as low as possible - it isn't vit D!


Hello Rjw

May I suggest that you use Emis Access which is a fantastic online access to your surgery for appointments, repeat prescriptions and more. You will have to contact your receptionist to get details of how to join and although it won't be soon enough to help your current pain, I am certain that you won't regret it for the future,

In the meantime have you tried slow stretching exercises to give you some relief? You will also find them online.



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