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Posted by Carol on June 04, 2000 at 03:52:16:

In Reply to: Re: Has anyone had or know anyone who has had major hand surgery? posted by Kevin B. on June 03, 2000 at 15:33:27:

: Hi Carol, I have been a victim of RA for about 17-18 years roughly. And I have been under a rheumatologists care for most of those years. I have tried many things in the past. Started with gold injections which worked for many years but even the doctor said the gold will not work forever, and so I moved on to other things. I am currently taking Methotrexate(a strong drug that I only take 15mgs. once a week) Maybe you are familiar with it. I also take Flurbiprofen 100mgs. twice a day. I used to take enteric coated aspirin for years, but my current doctor said the body can get too used to it, etc. And that's not good. So that's why the switch there. I have blood tests every six weeks to check liver/blood. Methotrexate is something I may have to take the rest of my life. I wish not!
: Carol I can tell you that he said it could take about 3 months to be able to hold a tooth brush or a writing pen. I fear not only the operation and the recovery time, but how good will your hand be? I am also right handed and it is the worst. Also have you ever wondered or tried to imagine what it would be like with only one arm or should I say only one hand? Think of the things that you couldn't do! Since your probably married, your husband could help you. On the other hand, I am single and would have to do everything myself! Scary thought in a way for anybody. Carol are you under a doctors care? What are you taking now?
: You said that you have been in more pain for about the last month. I don't know why, but I have been in more pain for maybe a couple months. I worry about the use of my hands at work. The surgery needed may be inevitable, but I will keep going on probably as long as I can. I also don't have any extra money in reserve to get me through three or more months without a paycheck inspite of company benefits. Take care Carol. Write back. Kevin B.

Hi Kevin, thanks for answering my post. I have has arthritis AND fibromyalgia for many years. I first started taking aspirin, then Advil, then Ecotrin, etc.... you name it, I've tried all the over the counter pain meds. And, I might say with little to no relief. I am presently under the care of a rheumatologist which I am displeased with. I don't feel he really LISTENS to me. It's just like,"here,try this prescription" and I'm out the door.

You said you are taking Flurbiprofen. I wonder if it works any better than ibuprofen. That's what I am taking now. 800 mg. twice daily. I know it has many side effects but I feel safer taking it than the Vioxx I was on.The Vioxx helped control my pain better, but after hearing about people dying with heart attacks and strokes from taking it, I flushed it down the toilet. You would think the FDA would do more studies before approving all these new drugs which could be life threatening.

I feel the same as you about the hand surgery. Until I can find better assurance about the recovery time and future prognosis, I will put off the surgery as long as I can.
Take care,

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