Do You Have A Dual Diagnosis?
We wonder many things when we are diagnosed with an illness. I was asked, “Can you have more than one arthritis at once?”. I did some research and discovered that you can have gout, psoriatic arthritis, and psoriasis at the same time.
Different types of arthritis
Gout is one of the most common forms of arthritis which can cause a sensation of sudden burning pain, stiffness, and swelling of the joint. It brings double pane and double suffering. I always thought old people got gout in their feet, but it can be found in other parts of the body.
Some people could potentially have rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis at the same time. People might also have osteoarthritis and psoriatic arthritis. These chronic diseases can be both physically and mentally challenging. They can lead to complications, pain, and suffering. Some people with osteoarthritis people often get so bad they have to have their hip replaced and knee replaced due to the loss of cartilage and the bones rubbing together.
We can also get a condition called arthritis mutilans. This is a very painful and disabling form of psoriatic arthritis. This can cause diseases o the small bones in the hands which leads to permanent damage. Both disease have very damaging effects to the bones and joints.
Managing pain from more than one arthritis
There is no cure for psoriatic arthritis - the goal of treatment is to manage symptoms. For both of these conditions, doctors focus on relieving pain so that the patient can be as comfortable as possible.
There are over one hundred different forms of arthritis. It is mind-boggling. Arthritis has affected so many social lives and work lives due to extreme pain. I have met several people with a dual diagnosis of more than one arthritis and I can tell you that it is not pleasant. I feel like joint damage is almost a given when you have psoriatic arthritis. Injections and pills are the order of the day for those of us living with this disease.
I went to a conference where so many people using wheelchairs and walking devices, immobile due to the many forms of arthritis. So if you suspect you have another form of arthritis along with your PsA; it is best to get a checkup to make sure what you're dealing with.
Monitor your own symptoms
I’ve learned in my own health care to watch my symptoms; look for changes and notice when new symptoms show up. Don’t take them for granted or just assume you’re having another pain; that might not be the case. I was just diagnosed with fibromyalgia days ago. Of course, there is no cure for this either; another autoimmune disease.
You might be surprised by what you find out. It’s always good to know and never assume. I knew something was going on with my body. I was feeling more tired, more in pain, more stiffness, and more body aches.
Make sure to include your family and friends in what is going on with you. We need that added support. Tell them about your day to day activity and how it is affecting you. Join a support group if you have to.
Accepting my dual diagnosis
So does having a dual diagnosis make things worse for you? I’m not sure if I’m worse, but I do have to continue to take care of myself. I’m already suffering. What can I do? I first got the proper diagnosis and a treatment plan. Keeping a positive attitude has helped me so much on this journey.
I’m staying on top of my dual diagnosis because at the end of the day it’s about me living a healthy lifestyle. This is a must.
Do you have a sleep disorder (eg. insomnia, sleep apnea, RLS) in addition to your PsA?