New approach

I have had PsA for about 15 years. It took a couple of years to finally be diagnosed by a very good rheumatologist. My psoriasis when I was first diagnosed was really bad – ears, scalp, elbows and groin were affected.

My arthritis started in my ankle and slowly moved to my knee, wrists, elbows, and neck. Before I was diagnosed I honestly thought I was dying. I was relieved to find out what was causing the pain. I then however was pretty depressed that there was no cure and I would most likely deal with PsA the rest of my life. I was then given all the standard drugs starting with sulphasalazine, then luflenomide, and then methrotrexate which worked for a while until I was diagnosed in 2009 with stage 3 skin cancer. All drugs were stopped and had to undergo a couple of surgeries.

I survived my battle with cancer. I was then put on prednisone for a while until it was ineffective. I then tried extreme dieting and antibiotics that made my arthritis worse to the point I was bedridden. At this pount i was losing the will to live. But then I started thinking about other people that were worse off than me and started thinking about my family and God and making a spiritual connection. It gave me the strength to carry on and that is when I got on Simponi.

This drug changed my life. Within a week of injection i went from not being able to get out of bed by myself to sitting up and walking without crutches. I have been on the drug 8 years now and it is not as effective but still works. Of course, I worry about the cancerous side effects but you have to choose the lesser of 2 evils. Its all about qualiry of life for me! The last few months my new rheumatologist was trying to transfer me on to Otezla becuse of the non cancerous side effects. It did not work and has given me flashbacks of those dark days not being able to walk.
I am sticking with Simponi for now as it is the only drug that has been effective.

My new approah in 2018 is diet and stress management. I find my PsA is not as bad when I’m stress free and had enough rest. I have given up alcohol completely as well as dairy, wheat, rice, yeast, and anything processed. I am on a high protein high veg and fruit diet and so far I feel pretty good. Time will tell as to how good it will get but I am optimisic. To those of you reading this, I want you to know this disease took away my youth and changed me in a bad way, but I am still here swinging, fighting this daily fight. If you’re down and out and feel your at the end of your line. Don’t give up! Keep fighting.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Psoriatic-Arthritis.com 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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