Ever since my rheumy increased my ssz from bid to tid, I’ve been tempted to quit my meds completely. I haven’t done it, but I’ve sure been tempted. A zillion different vitamins plus prescriptions for three pills with breakfast, two with lunch, and five with dinner. It’s just too much.
I’ve dropped the vitamins, reducing my pill count to ten per day. That’s still an awful lot of medication to swallow. There are days that I never want to see another pill.
* * *
For the past seven years, I’ve taken my children with me to the local nursing home once a week.
We’ve met many people with great life stories. Among them are those who were afflicted with RA before treatment from DMARDs* existed. I’ve seen their hands and wheelchairs.
Not too long ago I talked to a dear lady who was extremely upset that she’d be getting a permanent catheter – because of her RA. It was just too hard for the staff to help her to the bathroom, but she couldn’t go by herself, and she couldn’t use a bedpan.
I know what can happen with untreated/undertreated RA. It’s not an abstract theory — not some scare tactic that I’ve heard from an old guy in a white coat. I’ve seen it myself.
* * *
I think about those wonderful old ladies in the nursing home. I think about their hands, deformed so greatly that they can barely operate the joystick on their electric wheelchairs. No holding a book or writing a letter. No knitting. No typing on the computer. No playing the piano or violin or guitar. No swimming. I think of a permanent catheter. I think of not being able to pick apples with my kids.
Maybe those pills aren’t too much, after all.
Disease Modifying Anti-Rheumatic Drugs – medicines that alter the normal course of crippling rheumatoid arthritis