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FREEDOM

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RDJ alcohol and narcoticsToday I went to see my rheumatologist. At the beginning of the appointment I was straightforward in telling her about my trip to the Mayo and what they had told me regarding my lack of RA symptoms and the presence of Fibro symptoms. She was very attentive and listened to my whole spiel. I asked if this meant that we questioned my initial diagnosis of RA and she said no, she pulled up a chart on her computer showing my total swollen joint count over time and pointed out how many swollen joints I’d had initially and how they decreased over time as we became more agressive in our treatment. She checked my trigger points and said that they had not been this bad previously and showed me a chart of my previous positive trigger points, neither of us are sure why it is suddenly worse but we agreed that continued use of Lyrica and Tramadol was in my best interest [due to the use of Tramadol I am COMPLETELY off of the Vicodin!]. Then I asked the question I have been dreading and fretting over: “Can I stop my methotrexate?” For those just tuning in Methotrexate [or MTX for short] is a chemotherapy drug that in small doses is used to treat autoimmune diseases such as RA. It is very harsh on your body and I personally have had the unfortunate side effects of mouth ulcers and nausea. In short I would very much like not to be taking MTX injections once a week. So I asked her if I could stop this horrible drug AND SHE SAID YES! I am officially off MTX! This is kind of a big deal. I then asked about my other RA medication Orencia, she said that if my RA is still in remission [which she confirmed is what happened] in 6 months that I can discontinue Orencia! BUT she was very adamant about this disclaimer, once RA is in control getting back to remission after a major flare can be hard to come back from, so from here we proceed with caution. On a positive note I begin tapering off of the NSAID Celebrax tomorrow as they think it may be contributing to my stomach issues.

Additionally I went to the ENT that my mother is very fond of to seek out help for my oral ulcers, he was very helpful and gave me MEGA oral ulcer solution with more drugs in it than I can remember [mostly used on chemotherapy and radiation patients] and some oralgel paste. They are already getting better!

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Throat Ulcers: Because why not?

money slothThroat ulcers, because why not. My throat has been killing me for 2 weeks and I’ve been toughing it out until today. I went to the urgent care near my house [I don’t have a GP in town yet] and it took him all of 10 seconds to tell me I had major throat ulcers that “could have been brought on by anything’ I then told him about the chemo vs. thrush sores that have been an issue and he said it wasn’t related to either but could be RA based or a complication from the immunosuppressants. He said it could be a long term issue and that he could treat but not cure them. So as the situation stands I’m just using a ton of magic mouthwash [which is a liquid combination of Lidocaine, Kenalog-4, and diphenhyd] and hoping for the best.

Smoothie It Up

technicolour rex Methotrexate is a very harsh medication. Don’t let the fact that it is available in pill from take away from that [however mine is injectable]. From time to time I experience some pretty odd side effects of the medications that I am on, and recently MTX has been the problem. As I was warned about 2 years ago chemotherapy can lead to sores forming in your mouth that are painful and long lasting, naturally I brushed it off and assumed that wouldn’t happen. A week ago I got what I assumed was a minor canker sore that slowly became larger and larger eventually I had to go to the doctor. As it was explained to me there was little they could do for it other than remove me from my MTX regime for a week. So for the first time in 2 years I won’t have my shot every 7 days, this should allow my body the chance to heal and in the meantime I get to justify consuming nothing but smoothies. In the grand scheme of things mouth sores aren’t the worst thing that could happen and a week off of MTX will hopefully feel like a vacation.

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