Photo credits

The Embalse de Riano in northern Spain. The picture was taken by .... me!

Wednesday, October 8

Rheumatoid arthritis flare-up

Notwithstanding my previous promise to go back to work, I have to request your prayers for my beautiul wife.

It is normal for rheumatoid arthritis to ease off during pregnancy and then flare up visciously afterwards, and right now she can barely walk more than half a mile, and that is very slow and painful, and she can't get out of her chair in a single movement, and she can't do the poppers on the bay's clothes. She has had to delegate all the night feeds to me.

We have in the past testified to the Lord's goodness in providing a partial healing which enabled her to come off drugs and have the baby. And so now, to go back on drugs, would seem to deny the healing. Also, she does not wish to fill her body with chemicals, prefering natural problems to artificial ones.

So, what do we do? Abandon faith and go back to drugs? She also believes God's plan may include another final baby, for which she already has a name which i believe to be prophetic. So we don't want to go back to drugs and deny the vision, but the alternative is looking harder every day.

So please pray for guidance as to what we should do, and more urgently for a full or partial healing so taht she can get on with the practical necessities of life.


  1. Good luck. I know exactly what your wife is experiencing. Has she tried an elimination diet? Many RA patients have found that a total elimination of gluten (wheat, rye and barley) plus dairy shows great improvements. I have found that for myself.
    Healing thoughts,

  2. Cathy, thanks for your 'Healing Thoughts'.

    My wife has tried elimination diets, primarily avoiding the nightshade family (tomatoes, chilli, etc). We were not convinced there was any improvement, but its so hard to tell wen you have to do anything for three months to see its effects, and so much has happened in that time taht you don't really know what is working and whether it's just coincidence.

  3. Rheumatoid arthritis runs in my family, so my mother had it very severe after giving birth. She couldn't get off her bed at all. Back then, my family could not afford drugs (thankfully) so her doctor told her to go on the roof of the apartment and basically sunbathe each day. So my mother did that all month, and finally she gained mobility.

    Now I'm 17 and recently got diagnosed with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. I've tried the elimination diet as well, but it's not the true trigger for my flareups. I realized after studying medical journals and closely observing my own reactions to things that should aggravate my arthritis (like coffee and beef), that it's nothing tangible that you could just avoid. Coffee is just fine for me (in moderation) and beef wouldn't so much a lot of times. They were just blamed because of my stress levels. The three things that cause my arthritis to flare up are: anxiety, mild depression, and sleep deprivation. As a college student, those are things I encounter quite frequently.
    So the solution? She needs all the help from you, to help her get the load off. She might feel very frustrated that she can't even perform the simplest of tasks anymore. I know, I'm a little more ambitious now, but it's really horrible not to be able to do what I have to do. It makes me feel like a failure. She just needs to be reminded that she shouldn't over exert herself, and that whatever she's doing is just fine. For me, I sort of have no choice but to succumb to my blatant failures (like not turning in things on time, disappointing my professors, etc). But your wife doesn't have to go through tangible reminders of her incapacity in this very testing time. She has you and her friends to keep the load off of her and just relax.
    Life definitely is far from normal during this time, and despondency creeps in so quickly.
    Oh and, have you tried herbal remedies? My mother swears by ginger powder, and I do just fine with ground turmeric. Alot of other people think Goji berry juice is effective. I haven't tried that, but it all depends on your wife. For me, ginger powder does absolutely nothing, and turmeric, though disgusting looking, is much better than the pills I was prescribed to eat.
    I understand the hardship. I'm sitting on the floor as I write this because my legs are going through a major flare up. For the past few days, I've been lethargic to a very dangerous extent. But today, I have some little ounce of hope again. Your wife will need that, and it would be better if she has a huge support to remind her of hope.


  4. Hi Aish

    Thanks for your kind and encouraging words.

    We are very fortunate in the UK to have a National Health Service, where treatment is 'free at the point of need' and we only pay a minimal contribution of £6 per prescription.

    We have been to the doctor and my wife is now full of steroids, by injection and by mouth, and has started a course of something beginning with S, which in the Doctor's words is 'less toxic' than methotrexate. She has bounced back into activity, and is now beginning to ease off the streoids. She will never be an athlete, but is now able to care for her own baby.

    I think you are right that the best therapy is loads of support form me and the kids.

    Thanks again for your kind thoughts.


  5. And I meant to say; than k you for being so open about your own conditon. hugely admire people who get through life with a positive attitude even when faced with such adversity. I will pray for you!



  6. Hi Simon,

    I stumbled across this post of yours from last year. Just wondering how your wife is? My wife and I are going through the same issues. Her RA went away for 3 years, drug free, and now 3 months after delivering our first child, it seems to back with a vengeance. Has the pain subsided for your wife?

    Take care.


  7. Hi Andy

    Thanks for your comment. My wife is generally very much better now, using sulphasalazine. Even though our baby has grown substantially, she is still able to pick her up and carry her around, and can even get down on to the floor to play with her. Takes a while to et back up again of course!

    My main worry is that her hands are very much more deformed than they were and I worry that they are still deteriorating.

    God bless you and your wife and baby. I will pray for you.