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It all sounds so familiar

I wasn’t diagnosed until a PA in my spine surgeon’s office ordered blood work and we got the last piece to a years long puzzle. At 17, I had my first surgery. A knee. The surgery didn’t really help and probably made things worse. That surgeon said I had osteoarthritis at 17. I had multiple other surgeries, wrists, feet, ankle, and then finally the disc replacement at c 5/6.

The impact of a car accident

I had been in a car accident. The effect of the car accident was immediate, but the resolution took forever because no one understood how the psoriatic arthritis was affecting the injury. I tried a chiropractor, physical therapy, acupuncture, many meds, and so much time.

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My only psoriasis patch has ever been a patch on one elbow. I can remember having something at the base of my scalp in early adulthood, but it was never diagnosed as psoriasis. I’m certain that’s what it was. It seems like a small amount to make a big deal of, so I never pursued treatment. The pain after the car accident was debilitating. Not many people were understanding about how this relatively minor car accident could cause such a great deal of pain.

Finding a treatment for psoriatic arthritis

Once the disc was replaced, I felt better immediately, but the rest of my joints were on a downhill plunge. The first drug I was given, once diagnosed, was methotrexate. It was a nightmare. I felt like I was watching a feeling myself die. I would have stayed in bed everyday, given the chance. I was teaching at the time. I could barely make it through the day. No one understood. Not family, coworkers, or medical staff treating me.

When I was labeled a "failure" on methotrexate, I was given Otzela and Orencia. They seem to be a good combination for me. I also have Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome. It’s not a helpful combination, for sure. I have an internal pain pump that gives me morphine in my spine continuously and I receive weekly infusions of lidocaine.

Being thankful for the good days

Life is pretty tolerable right now. I’m still frustrated with the constant fatigue. I wish there was a way to improve that. I guess you just have to be thankful for the "good" days and tolerate the bad ones. It’s helpful to read other people’s stories in the forum. It makes me feel less alone. Hang in there all! Support each other!

Do you have a story about living with psoriatic arthritis to share too?

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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