Why won't anyone diagnose Osteoarthritis.

Posted , 9 users are following.

Ok i'm new to this!!  For the past 6 years i have had left hip pain on and off.  Recently, my right hip has went the same way, but unlike previous times with my left hip, i am struggling to recover!!  I'm in alot of pain, find it hard to move around sometimes.  The joint isn't swollen and an xray showed nothing as did blood tests.  I have all the classic symptoms of this condition so why wont my doctor listen to me?  Atm i have no diagnosis and am awaiting to see the Osteopath but have been on the list a long time.  I've been off work since September and feeling really down as i have no diagnosis!!  Anyone else had the same or similar problems?

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  • Posted

    Yes, I've had exactly the same problem. I've got it in one hip, both knees and lower back. Been to the doctors loads of times and all of them just say take paracetamol!! It's a joke! So much for the NHS!  I've started exploring natural remedies and have found that Holland and Barret's Glucosamine, Chondroitin and MSM give me quite a lot of relief.  So does Flexiseq which you might want to explore too.  Anything is worth a try because lying in bed all night wracked with pain is no joke, and during the day not being able to do normal things because of the pain is awful and depressing.  Good Luck!!  Christina
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    • Posted

      Christine would you mind me asking if you live a relatively normal life?  I just feel like mines is on hold atm.  I"m normally very outgoing, but just feel embarrassed because i can't walk very far and i also limp!!  Do you limp as well?
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    • Posted

      Hello Kimmy. Yes I do limp a bit sometimes, but only when it's flared up. I'm at my worst when i get up in the morning. Stiff as a board!! LOL.   I lead quite an active life, as I have to look after my Grandson three days a week, who is 18 months old and a handful.  Also, I go away on short breaks quite a lot with my partner, and although I'm retired (I'm just 66) I try to get out and do a mile of walking a day on a reasonably regular basis. That seems to help the stiffening up bit although I don't think it helps the pain.  Since using the MSM though, I have been a lot better. It took me a while to get used to it, but once I settled into it I was much better.   Hope you find something that works for you too.  x
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    • Posted

      Kimmy, my experienc was the opposite, my GP couldn't wait to label me with OA of the left hip and degeneration of the lower back, hand me painkillers and then out the door.  It's a whole new world out there and a minefield.  Where do you go after that.  I find the whole situation very frustrating.  In the end I did get a few weeks on physio, and had to practically do nothing, so in essence my pain did improve, but who can live without doing anything.  I have only just joined this forum, and there are a couple of ladies who are extremely knowledgeable and helpful, so keep at it.
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    • Posted

      Hi Carole

      Mine was the same as yours.....couldnt be bothered.....slightly different attitude but useless doc.  He kept telling me there was nothing wrong with me and when eventually I asked him for a referral to the hospital he couldnt wait t get me out the door.

      Saw the consultant, had an X Ray and came back to his office and he said,."You need two new hipseek" so from nothing wrong with me one day then about a week later need new hips!!

      I know with other people he used to just scribble out prescriptions to get them out the door.

      I change my GP

      Love

      Eileen   UK

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  • Posted

    Think yourself lucky Kimmy!

    I have the opposite problem. I was unfortunate enough to have degenerative changes show up on x-ray and so they took the easy way out and diagnosed me with hip OA. Stopped looking for the real cause.

    Chances are that you simply have some muscle imbalances and movement impairments that are putting strain on the soft tissue around your hip. Look into trigger point therapy (a DIY solution - goolge it!!) and see if that gives you any relief. If it does, then that will probably throw up some clues as to what's wrong.

    Maybe if you describe the symptoms in more detail. Where is the pain? What does it feel like? What makes it better? What makes it worse? Do you have restricted range of motion? What do you do for a living (or hobbies) - in other words, what is your typical day like - lots of walking? Lots of sitting?

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    • Posted

      Sorry if that sounded like i wish to have this!!  Wasnt meant to sound that way, but i'm looking at every angle now.  The NHS is a total joke.  Just keep throwing painkillers at me.  I'm sorry to hear th NHS have let you down also!!  The pain is from my hip joint, thigh and sometimes buttocks.  Sometimes the pain is bearable, but on other occasions i cant even describe tha pain!!  But i'm sure you can relate.  I work as a pupil support assistant, dealing with kids with special needs so it's very physical at times and i do enjoy walking and cycling (the cycling has been put on hold atm)  I am on my feet alot at work.  Because i've been off since Sept i'm not on my feet as much, but on the days i do go for a walk, climb stairs etc i'm in agony!!  I'm just totally clutching at straws here.  I feel the doctor has just written me off and won't properly listen to me.  Sorry for droning on Susan!!  I hope your on the mend and not in too much pain.  Thanks for replying.
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    • Posted

      Oh - don't take that the wrong way!!

      The pain is very real and absolutely you need more than being fobbed off with pain killers. My point really is that if they diagnosed OA you wouldn't be any better off. Worse off in fact as they wouldn't even be prepared to consider other causes for your symptoms.

      I'd look up trigger point therapy if I were you. There's a very good booked called the Trigger Point Workbook. You look up the source of your pain and it will tell you which mucles it's likely to be referring from. You simply use massage (do it yourself - it's all explained) on little 'knots' in the muscles. This can give instant relief so really it's worth gettign started on right away. No risk; no cost.

      I'd go as far as to say that ANYONE that has pain will have at least some trigger point involvement. Simply because pain will in itself cause you to tense up and that sets off painful trigger points. I'm sure it will give you some relief.

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    • Posted

      I will defo look into that Susan.  I just want back to work but it's looking unlikely atm.  Walking can be excruciating!!  I see what your saying.  If i could afford to go private i would!!  Thanks so much.  I feel better already just speaking on here.
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    • Posted

      Just to add - I don't have pain or symptoms any more. Contrary to my doctors claims that I had incurable OA it was just a bunch of muscle imbalances - with pain and stiffness caused by resulting trigger points.

      This is somethign that doctors and even NHS physios know nothing about. All they know is drugs and surgery. If they can't justify surgery then all you'll get is drugs.  There are no other options as far as they are concerned!!!

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    • Posted

      Our local swimming pool runs trigger point classes.  Unfortunately they are during the day at times I can't get to because of work.  I did manage to go along to one on a day off and it was very good and not at all painful.  As Susan has said, it's all about doing little exercises that apply pressure and massage to various 'trigger points' in the body to loosen up knotted muscles and trapped nerves etc.  All very simple so no difficult techniques to master.  After I'd been along I bought a rubber ball similar to that used by the instructor, to use at home, it's very good for shoulder and lower back pain although I didnt find it quite so helpful for sciatic pain in my lower joints.  Certainly worth a try though as it's total safe and not at all harmful.
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  • Posted

    Hi Kimmy. So sorry to hear you're in such pain, I really sympathise.  Also very sorry to hear you're having such difficulty trying to get a diagnosis.  To be honest even if you had a firm diagnosis of OA, they won't do much else other than tell you to take over the counter (OTC) meds like ibuprofen or paracetamol, which sometimes help but often cause severe stomach issues, even if you take a stomach protector meds alongside.  I've given up on otc painkillers, they cause me too many problems and don't really take the pain away anyhow.  I also take Gluco/chondr/msm combined, I get the liquid form from Holland and Barratt.  I've also started taking Hyaluronic Acid in tablet form, which is good for joints, skin, eyes, etc.  My local homeopathic store recommended it and said its wonderful for restoring joint flexibility.  I've only been taking it a week so too early to tell if it's going to work.  There are two other things which really do work - fresh ginger, both taken orally (I brew it into a tea with lemon and honey) and rubbed onto the painful area (I mince/grate it and mix with body oil and rub in.  The last is frankinsence - I buy the essential oil, put a few drops into a 'carrier' oil like sweet almond or argan oil or even baby oil and massage it into the painful areas.  It takes the edge of the pain within a very short time and the whole area feels less inflamed.  Hope you find something that works for you soon.  xx
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    • Posted

      Thank you so much Loxie.  I'm only 37.  Always been fit and healthy, so as you can imagine i'm not taking this very well!!  Doctors just seem content to let me leave the surgery with Tramadol, cocodamol and diclofenic.  Great for numbing the brain, but not the pain!!  I'm going on the Holland and Barratt website now.  Thanks xx
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    • Posted

      Do be careful with those meds.  Tramadol is highly addictive and cocodamol is grim for constipation etc.  Diclofenac causes acid so make sure you take a stomach protector such as omeprazole or similar alongside it.  I find it unacceptable that all we are often given is health damaging opiates or NSAIDs.  I wasn't given the opportunity of physio or acupuncture.  I did have a cortisone injection in my hand but I don't recommend it, number one its horrendously painful and number two, the effects lasted such a short time, it wasn't worth it.  Do look into hyaluronic acid, it's stated that Hyaluronic acid works by acting as a cushion and lubricant in the joints and other tissues. In addition, it might affect the way the body responds to injury.  I asked whether it was better to buy it in topical form (ie to rub onto the skin) or oral (taken by tablet) and the homeopath said he always recommends taking it orally.  I bought a tablet which is a combination of HA and Chondroitin, so let's see if it works at all.
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    • Posted

      Fingers x'd for you Loxie.  Funny your saying that about diclofenic.  I havent been given any stomach protectors, but recently i've been wakened in the night with acid!!  That'll be the next thing i ask for.  I will try anything to feel better as atm i feel my life is lost!!  Good luck and thanks for your reply.
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    • Posted

      I wasn't either Kimmy, then I started getting horrendous acid reflux and heartburn so I went back and asked why and was told 'oh, you shouldnt be taking NSAIDs without them'....hmf, thanks a bunch.  In the end naproxen and diclofenac both caused horrible diarrhoea and other issues, so I dumped them smile
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    • Posted

      Well at least you've found this forum, with all of us fellow sufferers, some of which have found solutions so hopefully you will too soon.  Don't give up, continual pain is soul destroying but there's so much good advice on here from those who've found ways to help.  Don't forget the 'squeaky hinge gets oiled' concept - ie keep badgering your doctor perpetually, and don't be fobbed off by just a hastily written prescription and a push out of the door 'cos that's their preferred method of getting shot of you.  Keep pestering your doctor for an early referral to the osteopath, try telling them you'll cost them more by keep taking up their time until you get some treatment and it'll be cheaper to get you seen sooner - £££ signs usually work.  When I had a trapped nerve in my trapezial muscle, I got referred to a private sports massage therapist for three free sessions under the NHS.  Because it was a private practice, I got an appointment within a week or two.  Ask for that too.  You may have OA but you may also have a trapped sciatic nerve, which is hell on earth.  Basically be a nuisance until they get you help.  I really feel so bad for you, it's so unfair at your young age you should be suffering so much.  Good luck
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    • Posted

      I have been on Hyaluronic Acid in both liquid and tablet form now for about 4 months.  Not sure if there has been any improvement but will continue to do so.  I think I will up my daily dosage of Gluco/Chond and see if that helps.  The question always is, when do you stop the painkillers and can truly say the natural way is the best.  I am having a bad day today, the pains down my legs and bottom of my left buttock are very painful.  Having an easy day, which I find very difficult.  Have already said 'no' to a stretching class, petanca and am going to cancel golf later in the week.  The latter was never going to happen I know, but I can live in hope!
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    • Posted

      Oh I so sympathise Carole.  I've been away for the weekend wandering round a Christmas market.  I can hardly move today without being in such agony it brings tears to my eyes.  I buckled and gave in to a naproxen last night and today (sorry for the 'visual') I've got horrible stomach issues, back and forth to the loo and nasty stomach gripes.  I'm sick to death of the 'cure' for one thing being the cause of another just as uncomfortable condition.  I'm feeling very pathetic today and sorry for myself and just feel like flushing every pill, potion, natural remedy and so forth down the toilet.  There are just days when nothing seems to work or just swaps the discomfort from one place to another.  Continual pain is soul destroying, depressing and exhausting.  How comes they can transplant a heart, a whole face, even nerves for spinal injuries but they cant find something that eases arthritis pain without killing us some other way.  sorry for the rant, this seems the only place I can find people that understand sad
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    • Posted

      I understand exactly what you mean Loxie.  You just carry on ranting as and when.  Sometimes it's the only way to get through a bad day.  You think you are doing the best for yourself, but sometimes it just doesn't work.  That's what this forum is all about - support come what may!
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    • Posted

      Hi Loxie

      We are hear to listen to rants  {and to rant ourselves if need be}wink

      There is now doubt about it you have to pace yourself.

      The way I look at it is we have a choice.

      I would have thoroughly enjoyed going to that Christmas market and if I suffered for it afterwards......OK....I had had a good day...It WAS worth it.

      If I dont have much pain and end up doing too much housework and suffer for it

      That IS NOT worth it  cheesygrin

      Better ranting here than to poor family who although supportive must get a bit fed up with it.

      Was it the naproxen that made you ill?

      If so can you not find a pain killer/duller wink that you can take without such bad side effects........what does your doctor say about something to use as a pain killer of pain duller as I call them  LOL

      If you need meds, take them.....you get no medals for not taking them

      I was told when I left hospital after my THR........

      Stay on top of the pain..............Dont play catch up with it.....it doesnt work.

      Dont get me wrong I'm not pain free but a lot less pain than if I didnt take me meds

      Take care

      Love

      Eileen   UK

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    • Posted

      Your comment about staying on top of it and not playing catch up really hit a chord.  I do tend to wait until I'm at the end of my tether before 'giving in' to a painkiller or anti-inflammatory, mostly because I know they'll make me feel ill but then I have to take them and I've probably left it too long and the pain has won the day.  I think I need to plan ahead and register in my mind the times when the pain is worse and pop a pill before it gets to it.  Thanks again. Still hurting today but nowhere near as badly so onwards and upwards eh. smile
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    • Posted

      Hi Loxie

      You shouldnt have to take meds that make you ill.....will your dr. not give you something else?? I've gone back with a med that didnt suit me and she changed it for me.

      Good Luck

      I take my paracetamol, breakfast lunch, tea and bedtime

      My naproxen which suites me oK  is 9am in the morning and 9pm at night

      Love

      Eileen  UK

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    • Posted

      I too take Naproxen twice a day like you Eileen, and still find the ache/pain gets through.  I also take a stomach settler a little beforehand to prevent any side-affects. (so far so good).  But my question is, if you deaden the pain and carry on regardless, how do you know what you are masking and what, if any, damage you are doing to the arthitic joint?  I plan to take painkillers regularly, in the hope of keeping the pain minimal, but does there come a time where you have to stop and check where you are in the scheme of things?  Like everyone I do so hate taking these painkillers!

       

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    • Posted

      Hi Carole

      I take omneprozol or lansoprozol as a stomach settler {to help prevent ulcers} It depends on the chemist.....sometimes they have run out of one and send the other......my GP says they are move much the same.

      That is the question.....how long do you take them???? There is no such thing {in my opinion} as a pain killer.....its a pain duller wink

      One of my problems is a fracture after the 2nd THR and this will never heal {orthopaedic consultant} I will be on crutches for the rest of my life.

      He said.....so it wont heal what we have to do is hit that pain and that should help you cope with it.

      I had a cortisone injection about 8 weeks ago and it seems to have helped.    May  not last for long but every little helps.

      I have tried to lessen my paracetamol because I thought I could do with less but come the next day I realise that just missing one dose has made a difference and I was sorer than usualcry

      Ask your GP?  they should review all your meds every 6 months or a year .....see what they say.

      Its awful having to take them......Shake me and I rattlecheesygrin

      but if it lets me carry on life as {fairly} normal I'll take them with the occasional trial of stopping a dose or 2 and see if it works

      Sorry thats not much help really

      Love

      Eileen  UK

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    • Posted

      I think along the same lines Carole, pain is the body's warning signal.  If there's something causing pain but I can't feel it, am I likely to go ahead and do things I shouldn't just because I don't know I'm doing the damage.  Don't get me wrong, I'm not a martyr to it, I just worry if I block it out I won't know when I should be stopping something.  I did take note of a previous comment about 'getting ahead of the game' on pain meds though and not just waiting until the pain was so bad, nothing works.  I took one naproxen and one lansprozole this morning and at present I'm moving about ok, a little achey but not the high edge pain I often have.  My stomach is however gurgling alarmingly and I've got this feeling breakfast isn't going to stay there long sad  Funnily enough I don't get acid reflux it's that they cause a mixture of constipation and diarrhoea if I take them too regularly.
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    • Posted

      Hi Loxie

      I can see your point......and definitely if it is acute pain ....dont mask it completely......its like putting your hand in the fire, you pull it out sharpish because you feel pain so if you couldnt feel pain you would keep your hand there. I know its a ridiculous description but all I can think of at the minute.

      But if its chronic pain that you are going to have all the time.....like me...then use painkillers......I did say that I dont think ther is any such thing as a pain killercheesygrin  its a pain duller because if you arel lucky it dulls the pain but nothing I've come across kills itbiggrin

      Lots of meds cause codeine so I just use prune juice regularly as a laxative......dont like the ones the docs prescribe for me.wink

      Love

      Eileen  UK

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    • Posted

      you're so right eileen, I've had pain for so long I've forgotten what it's like to be completely free of it and no meds take it away completely, they just bring it down to a level I can 'think on top of' if that makes sense.  The naproxen this morning must have worked because I'm achey but not really in serious pain.  Just wish my stomach would tolerate these meds better.  Just had lunch and it's already bubbling away like a cauldron and a gripe pain.  

      On a separate subject - I was reading another blog with mostly people from the US talking about stem cell therapy and plasma injections, why are we offered this in the uk?  Oh, silly me, money of course sad

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