The Worries Of PsA Progression
I just recently had to have surgery on my left knee to repair a torn meniscus. When that knee pain started, it was only in that knee. However, now I feel pain in my right knee. I do not have the strength I should have in either knee.
With the possibility that I might have to have surgery on this other knee, it really got me wondering about the progression of my psoriatic arthritis. You see the bad part about psoriatic arthritis is that you can't see it. You will never know how much damage is there until a particular body part like my knee starts hurting.
Where it all started
My psoriatic arthritis started almost eight years ago. It first presented in my lower back. At the time it started, I dismissed it because I was working a job that required a lot of bending and lifting. I chalked the pain in my back to my work.
It was only when I stopped working to help take care of my grandparents that I realized that my back pain was something more. When I saw my dermatologist and spoke of the pain, he referred me to a rheumatologist. Many tests later I was diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis. I never even heard the term psoriatic arthritis.
As the pain progresses
In those eight years, my back is no longer the only pain I experience. My PsA has progressed from my back to my hips to now my knees. The hip pain started a couple of years ago. That pain usually hits me when I'm trying to sleep at night. It would also start hurting on long walks.
The knee pain started when we started remodeling our home. The best I can tell you and the doctor is that the torn meniscus happened when I laid new floor tiles. I really wish I would have asked the surgeon who had done the knee scope if he saw damage more than the torn meniscus.
Keeping the worries at bay
It is hard to know how much more my psoriatic arthritis will progress. However, having lived with PsA for this long, I try hard not to ever let it get me down. I keep pushing forward. It is the only way I know. Don't you wish we had a crystal ball to look into the future? With psoriatic arthritis, however, that might be a future I would not want to know.
I know the thoughts of progression can be pretty daunting. When those thoughts try to overwhelm me I dive into music. It helps me get out of my head. Even as I write this article, I am listening to music. No one knows better than we do to cope with all the little tricks. I'm too stubborn to give up. Psoriatic arthritis will not tame me.
It is learning from others that have gotten me this far in my PsA journey. How do you manage the concerns and thoughts of progression? Is there anything you do to keep the worries at bay?
Do you have a sleep disorder (eg. insomnia, sleep apnea, RLS) in addition to your PsA?