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Just got back from the hospital. I was due to have a biopsy to confirm GCA this morning but when the consultant examined me he could not find an artery - said that the artery had probably been softened by the steroids. He will report back to the Rheumatologist and would also write to my GP to see if he would make a referral back to him for a full eye assessment as he is concermed about the deterioration in my vision.

So now I can celebrate my birthday without a hole in my head!

6 Replies

Sorry to hear about the problems with your vision. Out of interest, how long have you been on the steroids, and what dose are you taking?


Hi Grey Owl

I have been on steroids since the end of April 2012 - started with 60mg and now I am on 10mg/5mg alternating days.


Happy BIRTHDAY Sorry had waste of time ,i had mine 5mths ago and found nothing ,lost sight in one eye week before biopsy ,other ok now down from 60mg in June to 10mg ,the test for GCA never seem confirm ,so keep smiling enjoy Birthday


Hi 2watsons

Thanks for your good wishes will enjoy getting old and frail! I have found that the best way to deal with this illness is to keep laughing and taking the pills!



Hello, new to this site. Had an ultra sound on my temporal arteries end of October following weeks of headaches. 2nd time this has happened, as with the first time was given steriods before the ultra sound and so diminished the efficacy of the test. Fortunately there was evidence of inflamation remaining in the artery, enough to indicate activity, and so eliminate the biopsy procedure.

My history is 10years of low level steriods for PMR, finally coming off the steriods in May this year. All was just fine until 5 weeks before the ultra sound, when the headaches started. Tried hard to contain it with pain killers, extra water intake etc. The doctor acted as quickly as she could requesting actions, blood tests, but had to put me onto high dose steriods 60mg as recommended by the hospital, due to terrible pain. Was admitted 2 days later to have mri scan and a lumbar puncture, which fortunately eliminated everything other than temporal arteritis. My problem had been over the years I had not accepted that I had a chronic disease, and was continualy trying to maintain a busy normal life, instead of acknowledging all the signs my body was giving out. It certainly came as a complete change and acceptance when you to realise you have to live with all the consequences of this. My advice is to do with it, what you can. Accept it - it is not giving in but acknowledgment. If steroids are what can help, take the steroids. Now down to 20ml, and am waiting for next consultant appointment, where I will have many questions.....will let you know how that goes!!


Hi Hoogli, so sorry to hear that you now have gca after having previously recovered from PMR. Must say you do seem very philosophical about it. You are doing well to have reduced your dose so far and so fast, but don't overdo it, especially with this demanding time of year upon us!


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