I was diagnosed with RA in June 1999, had been symptomatic since April 1999 – got up one day and had pain in both feet. I got a Rhumatologist appointment in June, who confirmed I had sero-positive RA. By July, I was bed-ridden and could bearly limp up and down stairs, I felt my life was over and I couldn’t believe just how much I missed the simple things in life, like taking a quick walk for a breath of fresh air. All of the NSAIDs (anti-inflammatories)the Rhumy prescribed for me made me sick (Naprosyn gave me projectile vomiting, I felt like death on the high dose of Ibuprofen that was prescribed, and diclofenac gave me an upset stomach). By the beginning of August I was taking Plaquenil, just six weeks after diagnosis, and by the end of August the Plaquenil had begun to take effect, I could walk up and down stairs, and go for a short walk. By October Plaquenil was working brilliantly and I was back to my normal self. Unfortunately, in December I collapsed with breathing problems and anaphalactic shock and was taken off the Plaquenil immediately and told never to take even one pill ever again.
I was then taken off all medication for 4 months until April when, I was put on Methotrexate. With MTX I had to take anti-emetic drugs for three months to stop me from being sick, and I took anti-histamines to cope with the rash for about two months, by which time I was established on MTX. I have been on MTX now for nearly 2 years and I feel very odd most of the time because I have no joint pain or inflammation, but I feel so ill so much of the time and I know this is the MTX because I don’t take any other medication, it’s like feeling like you’re dying from the inside.
I said to my husband the other night that although the MTX controlled the RA, it seriously affected my quality of life, and he agreed. I honestly believe that if I don’t get off the MTX, it will kill me. Especially when I freeze and get aneamia. Also, over the past couple of years I developed secondary Sjogrens, so I’m living with dry eye on a day to day basis. I feel I have to try AP, because I feel AP can not only control my RA, but give me my quality of life back again. I want to be a Mom with energy! I’ve read so many positive stories of people who got their lives back with AP and many who’ve gone into remission, that I’m feeling very positive, and looking forward to getting my life back again. So wish me luck, there’s a life out there waiting for me!