I am so grateful not to be in pain and not having had a flare up for quite some time. But Lord have mercy...I do know pain! There was a time when my wrists hurt so bad at night, that it would wake me up and not let me go back to sleep. The pain was excruciating. Had someone handed me an axe to cut them off, I might have, no joke! Pain killers hardly helped, neither did rest. During the day I was doing ok, still hurting, but not as bad as at night. My rheumatologist sent me to another hospital, where they had an entire team of rheumatologists and more experience with RA cases. After a thorough examination of my hands and wrists, they tried (yep...tried!!! haha) to persuade me to have surgery. They offered me the following options:
1: Fusing my wrist bones together.
2. Wrist Joint Replacement (Arthroplasty) and at the same time correct some deformities of my fingers.
I didn't like both options at all. The first one resulted in very limited movement of my wrists and they could not give me any assurance that it may not come to a joint replacement after all. My objections against the second option was, that the replacement only lasted for 10-15 years and could not be replaced more than 2 times. After that I would not be able to use my wrists at all. Now consider, I was in my late thirties at that time. That would mean that somewhere from the age of 70 to 85, I would be helpless! (Eww...ain't that awful, considering I intend to become at least 94, haha.) Plus, I still had to be careful with what I would be doing.
I took my time to consider all of this and then decided that I would stick out the pain as long as I could, hoping it would get better, like in all the flare ups I had before. And God was gracious, it did! I have never regretted not to have gone through with any of those surgeries. Even in spite of the deformities of my hands, I can still do almost anything. My wrists are fine. No pain, no limited movements. And should I reach the point where I would be confronted again with the choice of one of the options mentioned above, I prolly would choose the replacement. It would give me more freedom of movement that the first one. But I trust God in all this. He will decide the time and open the doors:-)
For those of you who had or are going to have a Joint Replacement (of any kind): may God bless you. For those in pain: you have my compassion and my prayers.
The blessing of the LORD makes one rich, And He adds no sorrow with it.