Sad but true and I know I’m a few days late to tell you that July is Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month; it shouldn’t be just in July!! July really wasn’t a good month for our entire family. You noticed I slipped on Blogging more and more and things really aren’t as bubbly and cheerful that they always seem to be on the blog. A lot of things are going on in my family behind the scene and the hardest thing that we found out a few weeks ago to deal with that my baby girl, my beautiful baby girl has Juvenile Arthritis, Rheumatoid Arthritis to boot. At least that’s what we are told.
You see, I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis about 7 years ago and not very many people, actually beside myself, no one knew about that until the last few weeks when my baby girl woke up with swollen feet and ankles. I had a feeling that she may have Arthritis for a few month now, she does the same “stiff” wakeup walk that I do, it takes her a bit to get going, but I figured as long as no other symptoms, maybe she will get over it.
She never complaint, she woke her stiff legs up every morning, no whining or complaining for her it was normal and after a little bit she was able to walk like a normal 5 year old would; run and jump and totally forget about the stiff legs until the next morning.
So, a few weeks ago it got really bad, her feet were swollen, her ankles were huge and she ran a temperature for days; no other signs but she screamed every time she took a step. We carried her pretty much everywhere if we needed to and after 3 days I decided to take her to the dr., this would just over time get worse and let’s get on it early.
I was prepared with research and knew from own experience that this could be Arthritis, I had to convince our pediatrician a bit to take a blood test to see if it was Arthritis, he didn’t think that would be the case until I mentioned for the first time ever to anyone, besides my Rheumatologist, that I do have Rheumatoid Arthritis, that totally changed his thinking and he ordered a list of blood work. So Mom’s and Dad’s… don’t let a Dr. tell you it could be sprain ankle or growing pains, it’s a simple blood test to see IF your levels are elevated and then go from there. No child should have to suffer and go through trial and error till they finally get diagnosed.
Lots of pain and swelling and a week later we got the call that it was Rheumatoid Arthritis and her blood levels are elevated for that. We were relieved in a sense, because this could have been sooo many things like Lupus or even Leukemia, but JA isn’t anything to be excited about and to take likely.
We now are on a waiting list to see a specialist at the Nemours Children’s Hospital in Orlando, Florida to see how far the decease has progressed and what treatment process and hopefully help us understand a little more what Juvenile Arthritis is and how we can help her cope; I know there isn’t a real cure and lots is still in studies to be proven, but we take every little help we can.
We have a long way ahead of us and hope that our baby girl won’t suffer too much and be a happy little girl that she deserves to be. Till then, I will keep you guys updated on our progress and let you now how she is handling it.
If you know someone that is suffering from JA, be sure to join the brand new Facebook page called Kids Get Arthritis Too – Arthritis Foundation and check out their brand new Website to get lots of insights and interact with families like us to get some help, support and maybe answers and don’t forget about Twitter as well.
None the less.. We love our Baby girl and are SOOOO proud of her…..
This is NOT a sponsored post, all opinions are 100% my own and I’m trying to spread awareness to a cause that is close to my heart, especially now since my daughter is being diagnosed with it.
Dawn Lopez says
I didn’t realize that children could get arthritis, what a blessing that you had the knowledge and knew how to help find a diagnoses! I can’t imagine how that must feel, I hope that your appointment goes well and that they are some options to help!
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I am so glad you are sharing this, Melanie, as my daughter was recently diagnosed with arthritis too. I hope they find something for the princess soon that will give her some relief.
i’m so glad you caught it when you did!! i hope you get answers and have a treatment plan soon <3
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Grace Hodgin says
I just find this so hard that a child would have to deal with this and will support you in getting the word out. I so hope they concentrate on not only finding a cure but the preventative measures to solve it from occurring.
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I am so glad you are sharing this. I honestly had no idea that children could have arthritis. How awful for kids to have to deal with this.
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I’m glad that you caught this and shared. It breaks my heart when children have health problems, but I’m glad that she has a super mom that knows how to take care of her.
I didn’t know about this at all. This is so sad. Thank you for sharing your story and spreading awareness. Thank goodness you are so aware and are able to help!
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Janel C says
Wow, I had no idea! Thank you for such an informative post! With 4 little boys at home, it’s really important to know what to look for.
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I honestly didn’t realize it could affect children. That’s sad, but I’m glad you got a diagnosis and can help relieve her pain better.
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OMGosh, I had no idea that there was Juvenile Arthritis – that’s so sad. Glad to hear that it is a simple blood test though.
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Jen S says
Wow, I didn’t know symptoms could show up that early. Makes me think twice about my kids aches and pains that we chalk up to growing pains. I now know what else to watch out for as there is some RA in our family. Hope you find a way to make it easier on her now that you know what you are dealing with!
Janet W. says
I had no idea that Juvenile Arthritis even existed! Thank you for bringing awareness to it and informing your readers. I know that’s got to be hard watching your little girl suffer with it.
Sandy VanHoey says
Oh my gosh, I am SO sorry to hear this and honestly, I really didn’t realize it affected kids. I am so glad you pushed the issue and had them do the testing for her. I know when I was young, I went forever thinking and telling everyone I felt like something was wrong with my heart. I was sent a few times from work to the E.R. and was told I was too young for it to be that and wouldn’t listen to me. I went through misery many days with this, feeling like I couldn’t breathe and fainting started. It took almost 8 years until luckily, an ekg finally showed it. The others didn’t. So, at 23 I finally got a pacemaker but it was so difficult to get anyone to believe me. You’re a great mom for not letting it go and I’ll be looking forward to your post on how she is doing. Bless her heart, it breaks mine just hearing this.
aww.. I’m so sorry to hear this.. But yes, like you said.. thank god it isn’t something much worse. Sge is such a sweetheart and i hate to think that she has to go through something like this:(
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i dont think i ever realized that young children get arthritis to :/ so sorry to hear about this and hope things get better
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I didn’t realize that children could get it either. Growing up I always thought that arthritis was something you get when you age. I do know now that isn’t the truth. Thanks for sharing this information.
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