Does the arthritis have a specific pattern to it? And does it specifically attack certain joints or appear at a certain time and how long does it hang around for? Where abouts have you got all your information from? I am very curious. I, too have been going to a chiropractor, for the usual. But a couple of months after my son was born I started to have lots of problems with one of my feet. It was the worst in the night if I had to get up and still now when I wake up in the morning, I hobble around for a few minutes and quite literally cannot put any weight on it as it seems to be all screwed up and out of wack. It only appears to be my foot and one chiropractor seemed to think it was because of my feet to start with, so I'm not sure. Very coincidental only happening after giving birth. I would be very interested to know more if you can help.
Unfortunatly I was unable to get a lot of info on this subject at all as I was unable to find it. As I said just about everyone I spoke to didnt know what I was talking about. I looked into the Arthritis Australia web site http://www.arthritisfoundation.com. they have FAQ on this site. I then went into the QLD site at the top (this is where I am from) then up the top it has a sub heading Arthritis Info. Click on this and you will find in the 6th paragraph the only info I really found about Post Natal Arthritis. You will notice it says "It OFTEN strikes" which is the real mystery to me. In the main web site under symptoms it states "Symptoms vary from person to person and may include: Tender, warm, swollen joints, particularly the hands, feet, shoulders and knees Persistent fatigue and feeling "run down" Joint stiffness more noticeable in the morning Generally, both sides of the body are affected similarly". When I saw my GP about what was wrong he acted like it was common knowledge and then the physio I saw (recommended by my GP) know all about it as well! I thought I was the only one in the dark until I spoke to just about any one I could and I have not found another person, other the medical professionals, who know about this. In the beginning I had to take Voltaren tablets to start with, which I am pretty sure you can only get on prescription. You have to be careful with theses as they can cause other problems. My GP and the chemist where I got the prescription filled sat me down and warned me. I only took them when I really needed it and they help within around 30 mins. They help to get the swelling down to ease the discomfort. You can also get Voltaren gel from chemists and I think supermarkets are starting to sell this. You dont need a prescription for this. The other thing I was strongly advised was to exercise either walking on level ground or swimming. I was told I have to remain active to ease the pain. The physio also gave me some special exercises to strengthen my knees, as they were the worse, which also helped. I have been told that either a Naturopath or a good health food shop can advise further on vitamins or supplement tablets which may also help. I went to the Drs thinking I had either RSI, Glandular Fever. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or perhaps Ross River Fever. That was how bad I felt. My Dr did a full run of blood tests including thyroid as that too can make you feel run down. They all came back clear.
The best way to explain how my feet felt was to say it was almost like they were so stiff they were about to snap if I tried to move or walk on them. That was a very hard thing as my baby would be crying in the night but I just couldnt get them fast enough. I would be half asleep and forget and tried to get out of bed in a hurry and nearly fell on my face a few times. It was lucky we have bed ends to steady myself. I am sorry I cant help more but as I said before the main reason I left my post was to let people know this does exist, it is real and it happened to me. I would suggest speaking to your GP about this or even mentioning this to your Chiroprator. In the FAQ on the main Arthritis site it does touch the subject of Chiroprators and Acupuncture for treatment of Arthritis you may like to read it. If I can help in any way please let me know, I check this site just about every day!
Good luck. Janeen
Davina, QLD, 4mth baby girl Jaidyn
After the birth of my first baby 8 years ago I had terrible trouble with my knees but I put it down to the epidural because I had been told they can effect the joints for a period of time after birth. Anyway my knees eventually came good after a year or so and I didn't worry about it.
I had my second baby in March 2003 and was expecting (and got) the same trouble with my knees but my wrists started to give me trouble as well. I put this down to my age with this baby and not being used to carrying around a baby again. I brought a magnetic wrist strap and after about a week my wrists were ok.
Then my feet went....... I got out of bed one day and my feet wouldn't support me, as I was going to get the baby I had to hobble on the sides of my feet to get there.
I'm still having trouble with my feet and my wrists have started hurting again so I'll start using the support again tonight. I feel like such an old cripple but at least now I know why. Did your doctor say how long it is likely to last? and does that mean we're more likely to suffer from arthritis when we're older?
Thanks again for posting your message otherwise I would still be feeling like an old, out of shape mum.
VIC, G 8, Step G 8, B 8months
I was told by my Dr that there are studies which show that arthritis can be hereditary. My mum does suffer from it but she has had a very hard life and a lot of illnesses. It would stand to reason it may increase your likelihood to getting arthritis later in life as it is an inflammation of the joint. This may cause damage to the joints/cartilage. I have read about many natural treatments for arthritis and wonder if we should be looking further into something like this to help us in our later years. Perhaps the Arthritis Council may be able to give further advice on prevention or even a visit to a good naturapath or herbalist would be a good idea. I would also be interested to know if it increases the babies chances of getting juvenile arthritis just like gestational diabetes increases the chances of juvenile diabetes. I am hoping to have another baby and due to my age plus the arthritis and the fact I had gestational diabetes while I was pregnant and will be seeing a brilliant herbalist in the new year. I am hoping they may be able to help me in my next pregnancy through the chinese herbs they give you. I will rack their brain regarding this sort of thing and send another post if I find out anything. I am sorry I dont know too much about this terrible disease. I hope you are feeling better soon as it is so hard to enjoy being a mother when you are in constant discomfort and very tired all the time. If I can be of any further help please just let me know. Take care..
I will be 35 in 2 days and I'm wondering if this might be more common in our age group. Yes I did have an epidural with my second birth as well as the first. Could possibly be related but I know a lot of people who have had epidurals and don't have any pain in their joints afterwards. My feet have got a lot better in the last week but I picked up Toby awkwardly the other day and I'm in agony with my right wrist. As I mentioned in my last email I wear a magnectic wrist support and I swear, in about a week my wrist is 100% to what it is now. I am also considering having another baby, hopefully getting pregnant around the end of next year, depending on finances etc. My local chemist has a naturopath who calls in every Tuesday and Friday for free and I keep meaning to call in and have a chat to her about the joints (and other things.....too many to mention...ha....told you I was feeling like an old chook). When I do finally get around to it I'll let you know if I find out any exciting info. 'Til then look after yourself.
VIC, G 8, Step G 8, B 8months
I too was just looking through the topics and what "aha maybe that's what it is" and after reading all the comments I have to say - ME TOO!!
I'm 33 and didn't have a C-section birth and my feet have been killing me since about a month before the birth of my daughter. I also haven't found anyone else who has suffered the same thing so thank you because now I know I'm not nuts!
It's almost as good as a cure when you find other people with the same problem as you. I found it's a huge load off my mind because now I know I don't have a mental problem (thinking it was all in my mind) or a serious medical condition and I'm not the only one. I hope you continue to improve like the rest of us.
VIC, G 8, Step G 8, B 8months
It is a terrible thing being tired and in pain. As my Dr said at the time "you have to remember that you have just had a baby" Like dah........ Its funny the things you just take for granted like assuming you just have a baby and in no time you are just like normal. I think the media portrayal of famous mothers who have just "bounced" right back doesnt help when probably in reality they have just as much of a hard time as we do. Except of course they have nannies and personal chiefs to help them suffer! I remember thinking what sort of a lunatic has a baby around the same time as Posh Spice and Liz Hurley, I know one...............ME!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Not good for your self esteem when everyone sees them and then sees you. Remind me if I every have another child to check in with that pair so that doesnt happen again.....
I hope you are all feeling better very soon. I do know how you are feeling and it sucks. Take care.
I was just telling my husband that I have been feeling stiffness and like a bruised feeling in my finger joints and also finding it difficult/sore to button up my 6 mths growsuit up. Then I remembered seeing this site. My knees have also been giving me grief since Madison was born and I have been putting up with it, the sore finger joints have only presented in the last couple of weeks and this has only been mildy uncomfortable - will this get worse over time? I hope not.
After reading everyone's comments, I wonder if this is more common than we think and women are suffering in silence (as we do)
Vic, 2 girls - 9 yo & 17mth old