I had scalp psoriasis as a teenager which was put down to hormones, I was given shampoos and creams but being a typical teen I was too lazy to keep up the scalp applications. I also began to get mild skin patches but not enough to worry me. After having a set of acrylic nails removed I noticed that the nails had begun to come away from the nail bed and were painful, after a while I got infections under the nail beds and decided to see my go, he said I had more psoriasis under the nails and that not a lot could be done but a steroid cream would help and sent me on my way. I had my first child at 21 years old, 6 months later I began to get an aching pain in my right wrist which over time became worse, I went back to my GP who couldn't understand why I was in so much pain without having had an accident to cause it. I had x-rays which came back showing nothing, I then began to get pain in my knee which swelled and pain in both of my feet but the pain in my wrist outweighed both of these as suddenly I couldn't bend it all or move it without being in absolute agony. Finally was referred to a rheumatologist whilst also waiting for an MRI on my wrist, he diagnosed psoriatic arthritis almost immediately and drained my knee an injected my swollen fingers with steroids (both helped enormously). I finally got the results of my MRI which wasn't great news, the arthritis had eaten away at the small bones in my wrist and they had collapsed on top of one another and the only treatment was a wrist fusion which would take the pain away but leave me with very limited use of my wrist ( being out of pain was my main goal).
The operation went well and although I still have limited usage I have learnt to adapt and most importantly don't have any pain in that place anymore. After recovering from the op things started to ease a bit, the pain and swelling started to recede in all areas and I was once again able to perform small every day tasks. I definitely think the arthritis went into some sort of remission for a while which was a relief unlike any other. Unfortunately after having my second child two and half Years ago it came back around 7 months after the birth yet again, to say I was devastated would be an understatement. As it continued to yet again get worse in both my joints and my skin, I sank into a form of depression and even sometimes questioned if I had it in me to fight through this yet again, if hadn't had the constant love, support and help from my husband, family, friends I don't think I would be ( hopefully) through the other side of the depression now. I am seeing a new rheumatologist who has put me on methotrexate which so far is going ok. I feel a little bit like a walking chemist what with all the painkillers, NSAIDs, DMARDs, ointments and creams but I am beginning to see a little light at the end of the tunnel.
My skin is showing signs of improvement and I am in a much better place mentally at the moment, I have a fantastic and two beautiful children so for that I am thankful every day. I have no intention of letting this disease get the better of me.
Submitted by a 28 year old female living England