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Flare during periods, took prednisone. Muscle ability lost in biceps, muscle pain. How to improve strength?

Hi, my name is tom schlotter age 56 ,and I am being treated for rheumatoid arthritis . I take 20 mg. methotrexate weekly and inject 125 mg. orencia weekly. For the last 22 days i have been in a terrible flare period and was treated with 350 mg prednisone over a 17 day period. I am now worse off than when the flares started. i have lost all bicep muscle ability in each arm and suffer from muscle pain that make my eyes tear. I read a RA chat room conversation recently and believe i am prednisone poisoned or my body refuses to produce cortisol . What type of advice would your specialists give me to improve strength and reduce pain?
Asked On : Tue, 12 Mar 2013
Answers:  2 Views:  47
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Orthopaedic Surgeon, Joint Replacement 's  Response
Jul 2013
Hi, thanks for writing to HCM.

The disease Rheumatoid arthritis is characterised by "remissions and exacerbations" of symptoms.

There are a few general guidelines to improve your muscle strenght & pain -
* Ice packing over the affected area, which should be applied for about 15 minutes once in 2 hours. This will alleviate your pain.
* judicious use of analgesics & muscle relaxants
* Once the acute pain subsides, Moist heat applications to relax the muscles
* Physiotherapy for the involved joints & muscles so as to improve strength
* Dietary supplementation - Take adequate potassium rich fruits like bananas, potatoes ,dried fruits etc. Avoid acidic foods & drinks like tomatoes and vinegar.
* Use aroma therapy oils as massage over the affected muscles

Hope this information is helpful. Good day
Answered: Tue, 6 Aug 2013
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