Well I'm not long back from the hospital where I had a 45 minutes assessment with my physiotherapist. First major shock ... it wasn't the female therapist I saw at the hospital who I was supposed to see in conjunction with the occupational therapist I was referred to at the Rheumatology Clinic.
This time a unknown male physio went through a assessment which took 45 minutes to do. I was a bit uncomfortable to be honest I was expecting the female I saw at the hospital who was supposed to be my therapist along-with the OT who brought her into the case.
He asked a slew of questions and did a routine examine which showed basically what was already known. I had no swelling around any joints but that doesn't say I don't feel pain non-stop from them. At least there was questions about pain levels which I stressed were always on the very high end of the scale.
He asked if I had seen a OT, which I said I was referred to initially and it was her who brought in the physiotherapist which triggered the referral to the appointment I was attending but I hadn't got an appointment through yet for the OT. This I find disturbing as I was referred to OT not PT but this is the only assessment/appointment I've been to.
I was given three exercise for my left shoulder which was badly affected and little to no mobility and told just to keep doing my other exercise given for my spine/RA joint problems. So the PT is concentrating on my left shoulder joint and regaining mobility with it.
My entire body is hurting all over now and I'm in even more pain and more exhausted than I was before I went.
I have an appointment three weeks from Monday with the same therapist so see my progress with using these exercises at 3 to 4 times daily in sets of 10.
But then the same problem occurs my other joints are able to be manipulated easily by therapists/doctors but that's not to say I can do the same moves independently and without pain. There seems to be this belief that if there is no swelling it's OK.
I explained how my hips/back/knees were worse now than before and my severe loss of balance even worse than before and the therapist explained that my body has been dealing with RA putting pressure on these joints since day 1 and now 12 years on this is be expected. So that means my knees/hips will never get better than they are now which is quite a degeneration on when I was diagnosed 12 years ago.
He asked if I was working! I doubt an employer would take me. I don't sleep at night which I explained, wake up more tired, stiff and in pain that the night before, and it takes at least an hour to an hour and half before I have able to get relief from the extra stiffness/pain and go back to the continual stiffness/pain that stays with me all day. Standing/walking puts a lot of pressure on my back/hips/knees which make my pain worse which he accepts and understands. While sitting isn't as bad as the pressure is off these joints I can't sit comfortably for long and have to use my leather padded adjustable chair.
All in all a mixed result for me. I would a whole lot better if I would get my OT started as I belief that that will be more important the PT for my condition. He started asking what my usual day was like but I got as far as getting up and the extra stiffness/pain wearing off to allow me to go out if I need to go shopping but he didn't ask about tasks like cooking, making a hot drink, and so on that the OT mentioned, the only daily tasks he covered was getting up out of the bed when I explained my difficulties with that and showering which I said I needed help with as I couldn't get in and out of the bath safely, and help with my back and other parts I couldn't reach/do myself - the same with drying myself.
Must be the OT job to help with these tasks as they weren't covered. Only the showering problem I have was covered. Along with my problems getting in/out of bed.
Also very disappointed as the original therapist I was supposed to see was a specialist with fibromyalgia as well as RA and he didn't ask/mention anything about my Fibro and the problems it causes. Only my difficulty sleeping was covered because he asked about my tablets.