Saturday, October 30, 2010

Injection Rejection

The shoulder pain continues. I have no clue why.

I had a corticosteroid shoulder injection Monday morning, which, one would think, would be working by this point.

I know the injections don't actually help with pain, they reduce inflammation. I also know that they can cause a flare, which indeed this one seemed to have.

By Thursday, there was a brief period of relief, and I though to myself, Yes, this is it, it's working!

Alas, it was not. I don't know ho to sit or lie. Or stand for that matter. Yesterday I went to watch my niece's riding lesson and it was bloody cold. Tried to put my left hand in my coat pocket, but that was a no go, BECAUSE IT HURT TOO MUCH!!! So then, on top of the pain, I ended up with white corpselike fingers because of Raynaud's, which in turn, is because of the rhuematoid arthritis. Perfect timing for Hallowe'en. Ah, it's a grand little world. (I did, by the way, have Thinsulate-lined gloves on.)

Again, I have no clue why the damned injection isn't working for me. They don't work for everyone, it's true, and, apparently, I'm one of those lucky few, as fate would have it.

Could I be one of those lucky few who win a lottery? Well, no! That would just be too much luck!

I had a systemic corticosteroid injection back in December of last year and that didn't work either. It did zip all. Nada. Zilch. Same for this. In fact, if anything my shoulder is worse off because I haven't done my physio exercises for a few days now.

Seriously irritated.

And getting a cold on top of things.

P.S. For those who are interested, the injection didn't hurt. It was my first joint injection and as far as I can figure, was a posterior glenohumeral injection, I believe. Since I'm not a doctor, don't quote me on that!! Piece of cake, though, especially if you've been injecting yourself and getting blood tests done left, right and centre...


  1. Hi Laurie,

    I'm sorry to hear that the injection has worked yet - positive thinking. I've had dozens of injections over the years and have had great success with all of them, even if for a short time. Shoulders are tricky things - you use them more than you think and I can empathize with you (at least on one side, the other side is now bionic). I hope you find relief for your pain. It's cold here too, so cold, in fact that we have about 4 cms of snow tonight!

    Thinking warm thoughts for you!


  2. Aw, Laurie, I do wish that injection had worked. It's REALLY frustrating when things like that, which took a certain amount of courage and which had so much hope wrapped up in it, don't. My heart aches for you--I know, very personally, how intensely and completely that painful shoulder affects everything you do, every moment of each day and night.

    I hope your doctor will be able to come up with an affective treatment, and soon. In the meantime, I'm sending all the warmth, comfort, patience and care I can through the ether in your direction. Gentle hugs...

  3. I wish the injection would have worked for you. It sounds like the only thing that went your way was the injection didn't hurt. I am really dreading winter this year. Just can't take the cold temps, winds and precipitation.

    Hope you can get some relief soon.

  4. Hi Laurie,
    I've been searching around all day today trying to see what's out there for RA blogs. And I've stumbled upon yours! Lol...I really like the clean look you have. So sorry to hear the injection didn't work. I had a cortisone shot in September in my wrist which led me to MANY more problems. Ugh....I though I'd share my story with you so you've got some background on me too : ) Sorry it's a little!

    I am a new freshman in college this fall and 18 years old. I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis four years ago, but have been dealing with symptoms for about 7 years or a bit more (the diagnosis process took 3 years or a bit more). The summer of 2009 I was diagnosed with Carpal Tunnel and had CTRelease surgery on both wrists within one month of each other and one month before school started (senior year too!). Surgeon was the same doctor who diagnosed me with the RA and was furious at my rheumatologist!! She blames him for the whole thing (he was a terrible, terrible doctor....). She said that he neglected to really treat me. Every single appointment I told him, I'm in pain, my hands hurt, it's getting more difficult to do....anything! But he always said "You look fine", which I HATE by the way. I'm sure many of you have gotten it also.

    So she got me set up with my now rheumatologist who is SO much better lol!! He listens to me and even when he thinks I seem ok, if I tell him I'm not....then I'm not and he searches for the answer. Currently I'm having a lot of troubles again. That's how I feel these four years have been, you know? I'm doing OT for my left elbow currently. They think it could be tendons? But I just hurt and ache all it's a constant!

    It's been an incredibly difficult transition for me to switch to college life. The favorite part of my week is going home on the weekends lol!

    I'm currently taking Methotrexate, Sulfazine for pain (doesn't help), Folic Acid with Metho, Omeprazole for heartburn/stomach problems, and fish oil for dry eyes. That's my drug regiment.

    Hopefully we'll be able to connect soon!
    Hope your shoulder feels better soon,

  5. Thank you so much, everyone, for your concern. I'm working away on my physiotherapy exercises and trying to ice my shoulder as much as possible, and we'll hope that all does the trick!!

    Megan, sorry about the snow – we apparently had some, although I didn't see it!

    Tharr, hang in there through the winter. Time flies and it will be over soon enough – and think how much it makes you appreciate summer! (I know that's not much consolation, but I do know there are people thinking of you and wishing you well.)


    So happy to "meet" you! Always nice to get to know someone new, and especially someone with RA (and you have so much more experience with it than me!). Can't wait to spend some time reading your blog!

    Sorry to hear you're having trouble with your RA and difficulty transitioning to college. I've just started a new job and it's a challenge in some ways, although also fun and exciting.

    Have you checked out Skye, Helen and Mariah's blogs? They're all students, too – although a little older than you :)

    The links are, respectively:

  6. Living with rheumatoid arthritis is not easy because it is annoying and not to live normally and the joint or joints that cause us great pain. To control this disease should be used as little as possible the joint, also must take painkillers as you can buy Vicodin online without prescription medicay is so efficient to eliminate Chronic Pain

  7. I'm sorry this didn't take for you. However, you shouldn't necessarily give up on this method of potential relief. Steroid injections usually work for me, how soon is highly variable. Some seem to do the trick right away, others take a week or more to work. I generally find that when it takes longer to work, the effects sort of sneak up on me and it's not quite as dramatic as when they somehow wave a magic wand and instantly make me feel better. That said, every now and again, they just don't work. I have no idea why - something going on in the body chemistry perhaps? - but the results are definitely variable.