7 Replies

  • Posted

    HI,

    I don't have any significant experience of hand problems but I'll share what I do know and maybe it will be of some help.

    1. My 'thing' is hip OA. I know from researching that (I'm now symptom free) that OA isn't a real diagnosis. It just means unexplained joint pain. There will be lots of different conditions that come under the OA label. Many will be treatable so don't assume that this is going to continue for the rest of your life. Positive thinking will in itself do a lot to help you going into a pain spiral.

    2. I had some hand symptoms that were a direct result of the muscle imbalances that CAUSED my hip OA symptoms. I'd wake up at night with numbness, tingling and paralysis in my fingers - sometimes I would have severe pain in the knuckle joints of my little fingers. It would be fine once I was up and about. That turned out to be nothing to do with my hands but down to tight muscles pressing on nerves in my back and shoulders. This is apparently common.

    3. Most pain that I experienced was down to trigger points. Tight knots in muscles. Pain from trigger points is often referred to distant parts of the body. So trigger points in the hands could cause joint pain - as could trigger points in forarms or - as I explained in my case - back and shoulders. It really does feel as if it's in your hands.

    4. Trigger point pain is often mistaken for OA. Mine was only at night so clearly wasn't OA but many people get trigger point pain 24/7 in hands (I've read). Even the little nodes or nodules that form are reported to be preventable and treatable with trigger point massage.

    There's plenty of free information about this online and it's very easy and harmles to try treating it yourself to see if you can get relief. If nothing else, it's something to rule out.

    We're not allowed to post links here but if you want to know more pm me and I'll send you some refererences and links.

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  • Posted

    Hi Tina

    I have OA in my hands, nearly all my finger joints are disfigured in some way (im 53),

    sometimes the pain in some of the joints is like an electric shock and of an evening I find it worse, can make me jump. My two pointing fingers have started to swell and become quiet stiff, so I know pain will get worse over time and the joints will disfigure. I have just started drinking Aloe vera gel (2 weeks now) and have felt better in my wellbeing, not so tired, I want to come off the Naproxen - I have reduced the Naproxen to one tablet and not felt any difference. I would like to stop the "drugs" as they are probaby doing more damage inside me. My pain is not consistent - some days I have little pain and then other days I can hardly hold anything with out wanting to cry. I started with one finger disfiguring about 10/15 years ago. I also have pain again it changes in my right elbow, right ankle and left hip. I just try to be as positive as I can about my health and say to my self constantly (there are people/children far worse than me) so really I am quite lucky.

    I would say keep your fingers moving, even when painful - I run a B & B and look after horses, plus help husband with moving heavy things sometimes - afterwards I feel good because I did it and didn't let the OA win. But also the stretching of the joints makes them a bit more flexible (for a while) anyway

    Hope this helps

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  • Posted

    Hi Tina, I have OA in my hands/fingers, feet/toes, neck, spine and shoulders to name but a few. It was dignosed about 15 years ago, I'm now 72. I had early symptoms for some time before this and it's probably related to the work I've done over the years plus having parents/ancestors with similar joint problems. In other words, I was pre disposed but didn't realise this until I started to research it myself in the hope of finding a way to overcome the disabilities it causes. There is no cure for OA but you can help yourself by exercising the joints. I did hydro therapy in a warm pool at the local hospital. It really helped me as the warmth relaxes the muscles and makes it easier to do the exercises. (Try a bowl of warm water or do them in the bath. Epsom salts in the water are supposed to help too!) It has not stopped the progression of the disease! My fingers are bent and always stiff and quite painful. The same applies to all my other joints now as they have degenerated as the years have gone by. I was always in a job which involved using, hands,feet, back and all the other joints so, as is said, it relates to lifestyle in the past. Hard physical work all my life and I now get very frustrated with the things I can no longer manage but keep battling on. I use a rollator with a seat when I walk, I can rest now and then if necessary. I bought some Arthritis gloves which really help when the pain is bad. (I googled them and found some on Amazon and E bay.) Much cheaper than some chemists. Good quality shoes with "bounce" built in and padded insoles help feet.  Can't tell you a cure as there isn't one but we can help ourselves if we try. Best wishes Ellie UK. X rolleyes
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  • Posted

    hi I am 60 and have OA in my hands for last year.   This seems to cure it ( i know people dont believe me... but this is what i have done and it really is tons better...)

    1. Go to a hand therapist and pay to have 2 hand splints made for your thumbs. These cost me £60 each but massively worth it. Wore for 3 months constantly and my hand surgeon explained that the joints needed immobilisation as then clow growing scar tissue had time to grow in the joint which stiffens the joint a bit - he said the issue partly was the ligaments no lnger doing their job of keeping thumb stable).  You can still do everything with these on.   I now only wear them at night or when doing something like typing a long time, driving a long distance etc. They really work. Swear by them. 

    2. When nobbles have started to form on fingers, i bought some tape in Boots and strapped them to immobilise them as much as possible for a month and the nodules have gone down to being unoticebale. Same sort of principle. 

    3. Have NOT done any hand exercises as my had surgeon and therapist said that thumbs and fingers get uite enough exercise normally as you use them all day long. 

    4. Radically changed diet. Rheumatologist said to me that he never saw anyone with OA wh was healthy in terms of diet or exercise.  So i determined to change my life.  For 3 months only ate Fruit Veg, Fish, Seeds, Nuts but no nightshade veggies.   Basically gave up wheat dairy sugar.  Lost 20lbs; fell 15 years younger, all the OA pains in ankles, feet, hands largely gone and are now manageable.  Took up swimming to keep joints flexible. Now swim for 30mins a day (about 1/2 mile). 

    There is lots of research where even in non weight bearing joints like thumbs and fingers, the likelihood of getting OA dramatically increases with fat and being overweight - they dont know exactly why but whilst OA is wear and tear, it is more than that - as the joint ages, chemical reacations take place and the bad chemicals in joint overcome the good ones, osteophytes grow and cartilege gets eaten away by the chemicals and starts to attack bone.   being right weight but having right ix of minerals and vits really helps body heal itself.  I also drink 2 litres of water a day. 

    I eat as much as i want but basically veg, fruit, fish, nuts, seeds, chicken and i cannot tell you what a difference it makes - it was only hard for one week. Very little meat, dairy, sugar. Dont bother calorie counting, just eat lots of veg anf fruit (9 a day+) different one and you will get a lot better.

    5. I buy a OTC anti-inflammatory gel in Boots and use about once a month if painful but really i am down to once a month at most.   GP told me the most common anti-inflam in Boots was just as good as any on prescription. Costs £9.99 for a 12 hour tube. 

    9 months ago could hardly walk, ankles hurt, hips hurt, knees hurt, hands hurt. I can honestly say that i went OTT and cold turkey on diet and seems to have all gone away - went RUNNING again for first time 3 weeks ago and off to a sea kayak lesson in a moment.   i honestly think you need to determine to get well and ignore a lot of the stuff on OA. Change you diet, give your body the right stuff, get hand splints rather than lots of painkillers, drink water, take up swimming... I went to one of top rheumatologists in land and the thing which did it for me was him telling me he never saw anyone with OA who was truly healthy in terms of eating habits and exercise. So i just determined to get better and has taken me 9 months but i am now thinking of hiking the cornish coast path. 

    Final thing is i do protext my thumbs on grip - buy some plastic turn things in Boots - they are OTC in the medicine sectin - work a treat - you can undo anything with them. There are 3 in a pack - red blue and yellow about £15. 

    Good luck. Dont let it beat you.  Oh Yes! Nearly forgot know this seems bonkers but eat 3 brazil nuts a day as they have your daily requirement for selenium and anti-oxidants need this to work so makes the veggies work. Dont eat more than 3 though as thats 88 calories!   Seeds are good - sprinkle them on everything! 

     

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  • Posted

    I have OA very badly in one of my hands. After many years of pain I had one of my finger joints replaced and now I am pain free. Have had a second finger joint replacement and now I can grip things again. So you don't have to suffer but its important to not leave it too long otherwise surgery is not an option
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  • Posted

    Hi Tina, well you've had a few replies with different ideas. We all have our own ways of dealing with things I guess. "The choice is yours!"  Hope something works for you.

    Best wishes, Ellie confused

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