View Full Version : New Rheumy in CA

10-08-2009, 07:57 PM
Hi everyone,
I promised to update you after I met my new rheumy. I saw her yesterday, and I really liked her. She was very thorough, and praised my rheumy in SA for being the same. She very carefully went over with me the blood work results that I had brought. She also did a very thorough physical exam.
She came to the conclusion that the meds that I'm taking have done a good job of bringing the AI issues under control, and that my pain with walking is a whole separate issue. I read Amanda's post with amazement, because this is just what my doc told me - a possible herniated disc on L5, S1. I also have Baker's cysts behind my knees, which is contributing to the pain. She had me to try to walk on tip-toe (not possible), saw that my foot drops when I walk, and had me to try to get up out of a chair without using the arms (also impossible). She also thinks that this could be the cause of my neuropathy.
She wants me to get an MRI soon.
She wants to figure this out and get it treated to get me out of pain. After that, she thinks we might re-evaluate the MTX. She thinks that my AI issues are mild enough that perhaps we can control it with Plaquenil alone if I'm not dealing with extra stress and pain. Whoo Hoo!
I feel pretty scared about what might be going on with my back. I'm touchy about my back, so back surgery is the last thing I want to deal with.
Amanda, you and I can support each other through this!

10-08-2009, 08:04 PM

I am so happy to hear that things went well with the new doc today. When do you have to get that MRI? I will be keeping my fingers crossed for you.


10-09-2009, 05:21 AM
Yeahhhhhhhh Marla... so glad the appt went so well!

I hope she's able to help you with your pain. Any appt made yet for the mri?

10-09-2009, 10:36 AM
Thanks, girls.
We're waiting for Aetna to agree to it, so it may take a while to get an appt.

10-09-2009, 01:26 PM
Does she do long distance house calls Marla?:laugh:

10-09-2009, 01:47 PM
That's crazy that we both were diagnosed with the same thing. My dr didn't ask me to try to get out of the chair, but I can't do it without using my hands. I've tried myself. I just get up a little if any and fall back down. My MRI is scheduled for Tuesday morning. We're trying to get some health insurance, still in the process, so everything is out of pocket...but it's okay. We'll handle the payment issues slowly but surely. I hate to hear that you are experiencing the same pain I am, but at least if we have to suffer we can suffer together :). Oh, and my dr told me if I got a back brace it might help with the pain, and it did. It's not gone away, of course, but the extra support feels so nice. You can ask your dr if it'd be appropriate for you. I'll update you after I get the results from the MRI.

Have a good weekend!


10-09-2009, 03:46 PM
Amanda and everyone,
You know how our men like to "fix" things? Well, mine breathed a sigh of relief, because if there is anything he knows about, its back pain. He had disc surgery several years ago, and now is back to running and biking, no problem.
Last night, he gave me a lovely, relaxing back massage after he had given me some tincture of lobelia in warm water. After I was all relaxed, he had me to lay on top of him (insert snickers here), and gave my back a really good stretch. He was afraid to pop it, but he stretched it almost to the point of popping.
Yes, this DID lead to other things, but we won't go there.
Today, I feel better than I've felt in quite some time! My leg still hurts, and I'm still limping, but the neuropathy is gone for the first time in a long, long time! I think that he must have released that nerve that has been pinched for so long. He rode his bike to school today, so I've had the car, and I've been getting around on my errands without a lot of the pain. I'm home now, and I don't feel exhausted!
Hmm, now I'm thinking of rewarding him with a nice gourmet dinner and a bottle of wine.
I think that my new rheumy had the exact right idea. Since I responded so well to Jeff's physical therapy, I'm betting that if the doc prescribes some physical therapy for me, I might actually start to feel better and build up my strength. I'm starting to have some hope of riding my new adult tricycle along the beach after all.
Amanda, you can get tincture of lobelia in the health food store. It's a natural muscle relaxant, and a few drops in warm water really helps. If your hubby will give you a nice massage and a gentle back stretch, perhaps it might help you, too.
Good luck, and lets keep each other informed,

10-09-2009, 03:54 PM
Does she do long distance house calls Marla?:laugh:

I had a rotten rheumy in San Antonio, who happened to be male. When I finally kicked him to the curb, I found a great one, who happened to be a lady.
Another online friend, from the AVN group, recommended the one that I'm seeing now, also a lady. She said that she had tried all of the other rheumys in this town (all male), and that Dr. Suh was the only one worth seeing.
Are we seeing a trend here? hmmm
I know that I feel truly lucky to have found two great rheumys, especially after moving halfway across the country.

10-09-2009, 05:29 PM
I am glad to hear that the er...."back massage" helped you stretch out and relax your body. ;) "Back massages" are VERY good for helping the body feel better. :yes: Perhaps you should get a perscription for daily (or whatever dose you prefer) "back massages" to help you heal even faster! ;)

10-10-2009, 09:17 PM
That is so funny, romantic, & happily almost "X" rated :yes:
I am also glad that you have a great rheumy who is also on top of the issues with you back! Such good news.

Peace and Blessings

10-11-2009, 03:19 PM
oh marla....you tell us about all of your pain, then you tease us with the story of the "back stretch", and then just when the story starts to get good, you dump us....ha ha. I am so happy about your new dr....sounds like you found yourself a good one....mine is female, and i love her too, she is so comassionate....maybe there is a trend. It would be wonderful if your dr. decides to stop the mtx...that will be a day to celebrate.

10-11-2009, 09:01 PM
Hi Phyllis,
I haven't chatted with you for a while! As Saysusie mentioned; almost X-rated is as far as it should go on this site!
My leg still feels better, and I'm getting up off the couch easier, so I guess that the back stretches have helped. I'm due for my MTX tonight, and I can feel it. I still feel that achy all over joint pain and fatigue. A couple of days after my injection, that goes away for a while. I'm not too sure that I really want to stop the MTX, since it gives me several days of feeling good every week. We'll see.
Jeff has always been the family back-fixer. Tom would come in with a pained look, saying "Dad, pop my back." Jeff would have him lay on the floor, make a couple of quick moves, and we'd all hear the pop. A couple of Aleve, a good night's sleep and Tom would be fine. Kayla's sore upper back got a different treatment. He'd have her to cross her arms and face him, then would give her a big bear hug that lifted her off her feet. All of the kids have needed his "treatment" at one time or another - we just all have bad backs.
I must admit, though, that I think he enjoys fixing my back problems a lot more!
I'll still get the MRI, just to find out if I do have a bulging or degenerating disc. My knee still aches, right up front. I wonder if it's RA, or AVN? None of the docs have ever seemed to be sure.
How have you been? I don't think that I've seen the M Day thread show up lately.

10-12-2009, 09:29 AM
hi marla, i was just kidding about your "dropping us" when the story got good....i agree with the "almost x-rated" level for whl......................... Marla, have you been tested for fibromyalgia? (sorry, but i can't remember). The reason that i ask is because one of my most painful "pressure points" with fms is located at the front of my knee, mostly my right knee. It is just below the knee cap, and hurts most of the time......................i know what you mean about stopping mtx, i would be very afraid to stop. I always get a few good days with minimal pain, and i attribute that to the mtx. I think if my dr. mentioned trying some time without mtx, i would have trouble following the advice.....it really does help.