Misdiagnosed for 25 years, Mrs Virender Kaur, a retired school principal says that at the age of 65, she has finally been bestowed with renewed vigor. She had been complaining of persistent joint pain for so many years, however top doctors and the best of medication could not relive her of the same. “ Being a teacher is a physically straining job. You have to stand all day and when you are a principal you have to be on school rounds. Children and administration responsibilities ensure that you are always on your toes. However , the pain in my knees and my joints used to make my job even tougher. But I promised myself that I will not give in.”
She shares that the pain earlier started with soft aches in the small joints, like the ankles and the wrists and gradually spread to all joints. “ I couldn’t sleep at night. I took every over the counter pain killer. Sometimes I even thought of emptying the entire bottle. The meds used to just subside my pain for some time and eventually the pain would come back stronger.” Moreover her family was really worried about the side effects of the pain killers. “ I have always been on a heavier side making me susceptible to high blood pressure and hypertension, I was always worried that the pain killers would complicate my situation further. I wanted a solution to get rid of them”
Over the years she contacted various doctors- orthopedicians-who couldn’t understand her situation and she was subjected to repeated tests, X rays and injections. “It was the same routine, the same tests and the same confused look on the doctors faces that I used to get.” She further states that she also consulted specialists from various teaching hospitals of the area and took Ayurveda, Homeopathy and Naturopathy medication, but they were of no use.
But just when Virender was ready to accept fate, her family doctor shared that the issue could be Rheumatic- associated with an auto immune disorder. She was advised to consulted Dr Indrajit Agrawal, HOD Rheumatology, a premier consultant in treating autoimmune disorders. Dr Indrajit has more than 20 years of extensive experience in treating joint pains, arthritis and other complex conditions such as lupus.
Post consultation , it was deduced that Virender is suffering from Rheumatoid Arthritis. A chronic progressive disease causing inflammation in the joints and resulting in painful deformity and immobility, especially in the fingers, wrists, feet, and ankles. Such a disease is also associated with fever and fatigue. The treatment includes regular medication and injections as and when required.
Post 2 months of rigorous medication , today Virender is smiling. “I can’t stop thinking why I didn’t opt for a Rheumatologist earlier! I feel as if I am getting my young body back. Earlier I couldn’t walk or stand for long, today I have the confidence of making travel plans with my kids.” According to Dr Indrajit Agrawal, HOD Rheumatology, Paras Hospitals, Gurgaon, “Rheumatoid Arthritis is very common in India. However patients suffering from this disease keep on ignoring their signs and symptoms, until the pain becomes unbearable. Moreover the orthopedicians prescribe pain killers which in turn harm the patient in a greater way. They also resort to ayurveda and other non clinical treatments making their situation even more complicated. It is advised if one is suffering from any persistent symptoms, is best to consult a Rheumatologist. Some simple tests alone can help diagnose diseases.”
If you ask Mrs Virender about her plans, she says with excitement, “ My pain has stopped me from enjoying my life for 25 years. I want to live my life today like there is no tomorrow. Thanks to Dr Indrajit, I can actually do that. He has given me the chance of living life with no regrets. May God bless him!”