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#374843 01/31/10 02:14 AM
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 6,925
Likes: 1
Possi Offline OP
Addicted_to_AS_Kickin
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Do any of you have severe RA in your hands? Mine is driving me crazy. My PT recommended hot paraffin baths but I haven't wanted to spend the money for one until I hear from someone that uses them.

Thanks.
Possi




Possi
*********************************************************

RUN WHEN YOU CAN,
WALK IF YOU HAVE TO,
CRAWL IF YOU MUST,
JUST NEVER EVER GIVE UP!



"A FRIEND HEARS THE SONG IN YOUR HEART AND SINGS IT TO YOU WHEN YOU CAN'T REMEMBER THE WORDS."

"A FRIEND LOOKS THROUGH YOUR BROKEN FENCE TO ADMIRE YOUR FLOWERS."

Possi #374846 01/31/10 02:40 AM
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 5,231
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My hands are stiff, Possi, but not as painful as my wrists, and I don't have any physical damage yet. The MCP joints in my hands are the worst. I think Sue uses hot paraffin baths - I prefer to just soak them in warm/hot water and do exercises to try to keep the fingers loose.


Wendy

Rheumatoid Arthritis
Methotrexate, Celebrex, Plaquenil
Possi #374867 01/31/10 06:08 AM
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 21,346
Likes: 1
Very_Addicted_to_AS_Kickin
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as wendy mentioned:

for me, its mostly my wrists, in 1998, it started as my dq tendons, something awful. typing was a problem, til i did away with the thumb click on my laptop and got a mouse, that helped. page turning, especially to grade was a problem, especially for my left dq tendon that was far worse than my right, til i had the students staple the right corner instead of the left so i could page turn with the right instead of the left, that helped. not that it made it all better, but it was like the difference between being 100% disfunctional and being able to get through it. got a cortisone shot in the left dq tendon when it got so bad that any little movement was tearing scar tissue and thus setting off new rounds of inflammation and then new scar tissue. that helped but really it was 3-4 years before just as mysteriously as it started, it started to calm down. oddly, it getting better coincided with my taking a muscle relaxant, zanaflex, mostly now just at bedtime. all i could rationalize was that somehow the inflamed tendons caused muscle tightness and the muscle tightness pulled on the tendons causing more inflammation and it had become a vicious cycle. maybe the zanaflex broke that cycle.

in the summer of 2006, it was my left ulnar wrist that must have been predisposed to being injured when i poured hot water from a pot into the sink, felt something "snap" and that was such a mess. again, cortisone and 5 months of PT and about 2 years of favoring the joint, its mostly good now. thought it was just a freak accident til my right ulnar wrist had the same kind of pain but a lot less severely when i was washing my hair, pulled my hand through my long hair, and felt the same kind of "twinge". cut my hair right after that and babied that wrist (lots of ice too) and it never got too bad. all along the hand surgeon is pretty certain i tore a ligament in my left ulnar wrist.

and at some point, tore a ligament in a finger when i went to lift a canvas bag and caught it with the one finger.

and sometimes the joint at the base of my thumb acts up.

now i get any of these flaring up now and then, but nothing as bad lately as in the past.

so for me, all my problems seem to be tendons and/or ligaments. when things are just a little bad, heat is really good. lots of dishes in hot water, and yes, i do love the paraffin wax bath. its not really any better than doing the dishes in hot water, or better yet, contrast baths between hot and cold when my hands are a lot worse. so the paraffin wax bath isn't a necessity but it is a nice little luxury. mine is from therabath therabath paraffin wax bath and its nice and big, good for hands or feet (one at a time, LOL). but do love it. just don't spill the wax all over the carpet! though found out that a hot iron and paper towels will clean up the mess very nicely, LOL! love the wintergreen wax. just cleaned that one out. will be trying the vanilla orange next. it really is a nice treat. also softens the hands. nice if one has dry skin.

so, in summary, the paraffin wax bath is a nice little luxury but hot water works as well for me. still, i'm very glad i bought it, we put up with so much, whenever i can pamper myself with these little things, i do.



sue

Spondyloarthropathy, HLAB27 negative
Humira (still methylprednisone for flares, just not as often. Aleve if needed, rarely.)
LDN/zanaflex/flector patches over SI/ice
vits C, D. probiotics. hyaluronic acid. CoQ, Mg, Ca, K.
chiro
walk, bike
no dairy (casein sensitivity), limited eggs, limited yeast (bread)
Sue22 #374943 01/31/10 11:37 PM
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Possi Offline OP
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Sounds good to me. The past few days I have to use both hands to pick up a glass of water. I have spilled a cup of tea two days in a row now. I can't open anything. I am going to see the dr. Tues. I don't know why. They aren't going to give me any meds. I am tapering the Pred and taking care of my hubby and dealing with all of this cold ice and snow. I hope when Spring gets here it will be better.

I didn't even get to where I could get around this morning to fix his breakfast. He did manage to keep from starving. :o)
No church for me today either.

Just bummed.

Possi




Possi
*********************************************************

RUN WHEN YOU CAN,
WALK IF YOU HAVE TO,
CRAWL IF YOU MUST,
JUST NEVER EVER GIVE UP!



"A FRIEND HEARS THE SONG IN YOUR HEART AND SINGS IT TO YOU WHEN YOU CAN'T REMEMBER THE WORDS."

"A FRIEND LOOKS THROUGH YOUR BROKEN FENCE TO ADMIRE YOUR FLOWERS."

Possi #374945 01/31/10 11:58 PM
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 21,346
Likes: 1
Very_Addicted_to_AS_Kickin
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Very_Addicted_to_AS_Kickin
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Likes: 1
sorry your hands are so bad right now, hope they turn around soon, sometimes i just sit in front of the tv and wrap whatever body part is causing me the most trouble in my heating pad. glad hubby didn't starve : )



sue

Spondyloarthropathy, HLAB27 negative
Humira (still methylprednisone for flares, just not as often. Aleve if needed, rarely.)
LDN/zanaflex/flector patches over SI/ice
vits C, D. probiotics. hyaluronic acid. CoQ, Mg, Ca, K.
chiro
walk, bike
no dairy (casein sensitivity), limited eggs, limited yeast (bread)
Possi #374946 02/01/10 12:01 AM
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 1,576
Gold_AS_Kicker
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Gold_AS_Kicker
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 1,576
I don't have RA (yet?) but my hands/wrists are the worst! I've been drinking 2-handed for 6 weeks now, still can't button jeans, can't even open a ziploc bag!! So weak. My hubby did my long-ish hair for church today, it was an adventure. eek2 I'm also thinking a hair-cut is in order. I've never had short hair, but it would be so much easier.

In the AM to get my hands moving draws tears. I've heard the heavy duty fish oil helps AM stiff hands and I am ready to order some.

It's nice to know others out there understand. Thanks, guys!


Donette #374947 02/01/10 12:11 AM
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 5,231
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Posts: 5,231
I cut my hair all off a few months ago when my shoulders, wrists and hands got so bad. Couldn't hold my arms in the air to use a hairdryer properly. My hair is VERY short now and I'm really glad. It's helps so much when getting ready for work in the morning and when washing my hair. Really quick and easy.


Wendy

Rheumatoid Arthritis
Methotrexate, Celebrex, Plaquenil
Possi #374948 02/01/10 12:12 AM
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 5,231
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Posts: 5,231
Possi, that's what my hands were like last summer - had to hold cups with two hands. I've used a gadget to open all jars etc. for a long time.

I do hope yours start to improve soon. hug


Wendy

Rheumatoid Arthritis
Methotrexate, Celebrex, Plaquenil
WendyR #374967 02/01/10 03:16 AM
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 1,595
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Posts: 1,595
Hi Possi and Wendy,

Just a quickie - (reading between patients..)

I can thoroughly recommend the good ole fashioned wax bath! One of the best pain relievers for stiff and sore wrists, hands and fingers!

Dip your hand in the melted wax to make 4-5 layers, then wrap in lunchwrap(paper) and a thick towel.

When you are done, you can gently squeeze and manipulate the now warm soft paraffin wax to get some stiffness out and keep your muscles in good condition...

Also, make sure your PT / OT has given you 2 pairs of splints for your hands and fingers - 'working' splints (for when you are in a bit of pain, it will help you do stuff...) and 'resting' splints to wear to bed at night to help keep your joints in good alignment.

Later, hugss


Louise

Happy to be a physio by day, not happy to be a Spondy 24/7! wink3
inkyfingers #374969 02/01/10 03:29 AM
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 5,231
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Posts: 5,231
Thanks Louise - love having professional advice available on this site!


Wendy

Rheumatoid Arthritis
Methotrexate, Celebrex, Plaquenil
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