Progression of disease? How long from first joint issue to next flare up and worsening?

I sit here realizing that now all my finger joints hurt as do my toes and one spot on both knees and one spot on each elbow. cause a twinge. Wondering if it is PsA or just cause I am back to exercising.

What I am really wondering and hoping to hear from some of you, your stories. Timing from onset to next flare, to feeling better to greater flare and more joints. How much time passed.

If MTX keeps me in total remission and pain free do I really need to go on Enbrel? Did any of you have side effects with MTX and at what doses? I am working my way up to 6 pills a week assuming my liver is happy then how much more will I need an when will I know if it is not working.?

I am resigned to Mtx, still not thrilled about Biologics as they have only been around since 2002 so no long term stats and potential side effects NASTY.

I appreciate hearing from you, as it really helps me.

My first flare after diagnosis lasted about 6 months and caused me to be off work for about 4. I had started on MTX in the July at 7.5mg but it was increased quickly as my flare took over, had a steroid shot but that didn’t seem to help at all. I didn’t get any relief from symptoms until I had been taking MTX for about 6 months. During that time I had help from the OTs and started Shibashi Tai Chi and swimming. I went back to work in the December and was relatively ok (still had enthesitis pain) until my next flare started in the following August. My SI joints cause me no end of grief and was off work again from the December of that year to this March.
I’m still on MTX 25mg subcut injections because the worst side effect for me was the nausea on the dosing night…I would be “hugging the porcelain” for 6-8 hours not actually sick but felt vomiting was imminent!

Much prefer the subcut as nausea is very low level now.

I’m due to see my Rheumatologist on Friday and we have previously discussed the move on to a biologic because of the issues with my spine involvement. I was having doubts too about biologics, not because of the drug itself but more because I am aware that there are only so many biologics out there and what happens if/when I have tried and failed them? Then I gave myself a mental slap after reading more threads on here and applying my own knowledge…My spine is being damaged! This is not the time for procrastination! So hopefully I will be moving on to one of the biologics in the next few weeks :slight_smile: Started my annual flare a few weeks ago, with a slow steady worsening of symptoms the main problem areas are still there but more have joined the choir, as it were.

Everybody will be different. I had one joint at a time, fingers, for the first 2 months probably. And then it was my hands and feet, many many joints, with low fevers, and overwhelming fatigue (with a 1 yr old!). I was on NSAIDs only, but added in plaquenil after about 9 months of the beginning. It helped a lot, although I continued to have inflammation and flares, as well as more and more joints involved. After almost 5 years, I was put on MTX too, but it did nothing for me, and I was nauseous all the time. I was then switched to leflunomide, and once the dose was adjusted to minmize side effects, it's been working well overall.

Exercising is likely not the cause of your current pain. What would you have done to hurt all of those joints, including your fingers?

A lot of people are on biologics. Sometimes it is a matter of finding the right one. I'm not on one yet. But I'm starting to wonder about it myself, and will be speaking with my rheumy about this too.