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arthritis flare ups - depressing

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,578
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:26 AM in Arthritis, Osteoarthritis
Hello All,

I have had arthritis for years, but nothing like it has been the past three weeks.

I have been on Voltaren for close to 20 years. Before I took the medication I could not make a tight fist with my hands. With Voltaren I was back to normal.

Okay fast forward - Three weeks ago I woke up and the joints in my fingers, wrist, shoulder, lower back and hips hurt with that nasty arthritic feeling. That lasted 2 days, and then the arthritic pain was in the background and I felt good again.

The following Tuesday, BANG, another flare up of my arthritis in the same joints. Thank goodness that only lasted for a day.

Then this morning I got ZAPPED again. This is getting downright depressing.

When I would have a "bad weather" day with my lower back pain I initially thought it was perhaps due to the atrmospheric pressure, etc. However, I could never find any correlation. One of those bad days would just come without any warning.

Enough background - Questions - Have any of you had similar arthritic flareups, etc.? If so, were you able to find something that would help?

All of your experiences, thoughts and advice are most welcome.



  • Oh yes, it happens to me a lot. I have severe DDD in the lower back and it hurts a lot with the cold weather. My knees, wrists, ankles, and fingers join in to give me trouble as well. I have to take motrin to survive this time of year. It is depressing when you wake up in the morning in so much pain that it's nearly impossible to get out of bed. It's a good idea to set your alarm to take your medicine before you wake up, so that it's in your system already.
  • I actually have to do stretches before I can even think about getting out of bed. Some days I hurt so bad, I cry. I'm only 54 and wonder what it will be like in 20 years. Have you tried aqua therapy? It has really helped me.
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  • RangerRRanger on da rangePosts: 805
    You are not alone here. I have been battling with severe osteoarthritis for
    almost 30 years. At first it was most noticable in my hands, wrists, and feet.
    The past half dozen years it has wreaked havoc with my vertabrae requiring
    surgery to both my lumbar and cervical spine.
    You may need to have your Dr change your meds as your body may not respond as well anymore to the meds you have been on for so long. Over the years my rheumatologist has had to change my meds for me when they became not as effective over time.
    My mornings suck as well especially in colder weather but once I get going and stay motivated I can do well.
    Depressing? You know it friend! But I put on my game face, pick myself up, and try and stay busy to take my mind off of it. Try and remember it is not only hard on you but the ones that love you as they don't want to see you suffer.

    Take care and I hope you find the relief you deserve.
  • Hello Everyone,

    Thanks for sharing, your thoughts and advice. Nice to know in a way that the arthritis pain I have is real because unfortunately you too have it. AND that you too get this depressed feeling.

    Meydey - Okay, so this cold weather DOES make it worse. This past summer working in our gardens I would feel great. Of course then, I too was getting more exercise.

    Motrin I beleive would be a NO No for me being I'm taking Voltaren. Is that correct?

    Maddysmom - What kind of stretches do you do? No I have not tried aqua therapy, but I'll talk to my PM doc about it.

    For your info I'm 72. I am thankful for the good days I have.

    Ranger - Likewise for me it started with my hands. About that time I also found out I had DDD.

    You have made a good point about perhaps a change in medication may help. That perhaps the Voltaren isn't as effect as it once was. I was questioning that myself this fall when once in a great while I'd have a bit of an "ache" in my finger joints.

    "My mornings suck as well especially in colder weather but once I get going and stay motivated I can do well." That's what I try to do for my ole back pain, but this arthritic pain really puts me down. How do you get yourself motivated when at least for me all I want to do is sit in my recliner with the heating pad on. Your post and encouragement will help me to kick myself in the butt and try to get moving.

    "Try and remember it is not only hard on you but the ones that love you" - Very true. Just this morning I said to my wife "This arthritis really gets me down." Her reply "Tell me about it" in other words for her too.

    May tomorrow be a "good day" for all of us!!

  • I bring my left knee up to my chest and hold for 10 seconds, then do the same with my right knee. (5X each) Then I bring both knees up to my chest and slowly sway back and forth 4 or 5 times.

    The aqua therapy is great because the buoyancy of the water lets you excercise without putting pressure on your joints. My local rec center has classes specifically designed for people with arthritis.

    Happy New Year to you. :)
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  • My doc put me on prednisone for five to seven days, which eased the pain off immensely and gave me back my life.

    I stretch every day; I learned a routine at a pain clinic, so I can't really go into details about the whole thing, but pelvic tilts, "cat" stretches (on your hands and knees arching and stretching), forward bends, "one vertebrae at a time", gentle backward stretches and side to side stretches are a few of them.

    I am currently on Froban, also known as Flurbiprofen, and it has been a big help to me. I have ankylosing spondylitis as well as a few other issues, so am also on methotrexate; an awful drug, but it has helped me a lot as well.

    I'm with maddysmom, too; there are some great arthritis exercise programs offered at most pools, and they are very gentle.

    Good luck.

  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 11,347
    Rich, you here so much about arthritis, but until you actual have it and it progresses you really dont understand the whole picture.
    I've had some recent flare ups, the resulted in a series of tests that my Pain Management doctor wanted to get done. The MRI's came out negative, which is good news, I think but that other side of the coin, they just told me that my arthritis in several areas is progressing rapidly.
    Luckily, there are ways to combat arthritis or at least deal with it. I am trying everything I know and what I have read to keep things like this under control
    Hopefully, your flare up will not last that long. Look at it this way, you are on the downside of a peduncle swing, but at some point, it will have an upward turn.
    Good luck, we all find our own ways on how to make sure we get through anything
    Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • Hello Ron,

    Seems like those arthritis flare-ups are fairly common (unfortunately) for people having arthritis.

    For the past few days the arthritis has stayed in the "background". Hope it stays that way.

    Yep, one has to think positive.

  • RichT said:

    You have made a good point about perhaps a change in medication may help. That perhaps the Voltaren isn't as effect as it once was. I was questioning that myself this fall when once in a great while I'd have a bit of an "ache" in my finger joints.

    I would suggest that instead of Voltaren, you try Mobic.
    I was on Voltaren back in the 80's, then went to Vioxx, and have been on Mobic for several years now.
    For me, it works very well. Takes about 2 weeks to kick in.
    Still take pain meds and have facet joint injections, but each plays a role. With arthritis, you need all the help you can get!
    With finger joints, I read recently that this can also be tendons getting snagged. Mine get sore occasionally and if I move them I can feel the tendon go back into place.
  • Hello Peter,

    Thanks for your post and thoughts. Amazing, for some reason I have not heard of Mobic before. I will definitely mention it to my PM doc and get this thoughts.

    However, there is some indication from an ongoing study that "Mobic may be even riskier than Vioxx" regarding heart attacks. That does raise some concern.

    Have a Good Day!!

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