Oh No! Not Another Diagnostic Opportunity….

This week has been pretty miserable because my rheumatologist has been running medication tests to figure out why my knees and hips have been giving me so much grief since the move.

X-rays showed no mechanical damage (or osteoarthritis), so the problem was likely some inflammatory disease. As a first test, I started on prednisone last Thursday. If this relieved the symptoms, then inflammation was confirmed.

Well, within 48 hours the pain and stiffness was nearly gone. I reported this to the doctor and we discussed likely causes. I had been speculating on all sorts of obscure forms of arthritis or even more exotic things. His notion was unexpected but obvious now in retrospect: gout. His reasoning was that this was the most likely explanation for an inflammatory disease that affected only the lower body in an older male. And I already had been treated for gout in my left foot.

So now we had to confirm the diagnosis. This is where it got unpleasant because the test involved stopping the prednisone until symptoms returned, then starting a gout medicine. I stopped the prednisone on Tuesday. Yesterday morning I almost couldn’t get out of bed and stand up. That was good enough for me, so I started the new medicine.

I’m happy to say that the new stuff works and that I managed to sleep last night. I’m still sore and stiff, but gaining ground. I need to let it run a few more days before declaring victory, but I’m encouraged.

I just hope I can go some time before I have to survive another experiment like this one.

-= G =-

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