Friday, June 28, 2013

FLARE Numero Uno.

Last weekend my nightmares became a reality... Emma had an arthritis flare.
In case you are unaware, she has had no signs of active arthritis for a year and a half. We stopped all arthritis medications at the end of April and she has been in unmedicated remission.

Last week, on four separate mornings, Emma complained of her right knee hurting shortly after waking up. (Morning stiffness and pain are common symptoms of arthritis, and her right knee was involved previously.) I examined her closely, stretched her leg, watched for a limp, but everything was okay. I decided to keep an eye on things.

Last weekend we were with Barry's step-dad's family at Lake Tahoe. It was lovely. Emma had a blast playing with cousins, but nothing unusual happened. Then, at 12:30A.M. on Sunday, she woke and we walked down the hall to the bathroom. Correction: I walked. She limped. Her knee was swollen, hot, and painful. When we settled back into bed I didn't sleep for crap. At 6:30A.M. when we woke for the day, the knee was still a mess. I took this photo.
June 23, 2013
Emma's right knee (on the left in the picture) is obviously swollen. Poor baby. However, in true JA kid fashion, once she got moving and warmed up for the day, she was comfortable and pain-free. We drove home that night and the three and a half hours of sitting in the car made her stiff again, so she limped into the house. I cried. I gave her Naproxen (an oral, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory, AKA Aleve) and tucked her into bed.

Monday was a new day! She woke up feeling much more comfortable with less swelling, thank heaven! Labs were drawn and her blood work came back relatively normal. Her ESR (which indicates inflammation) was up from 9 to 20mm/hr. Normal is anywhere from 0 to 20mm/hr so she's still in the normal range, though just barely.

I continued giving her Naproxen twice a day and things returned completely back to normal by Wednesday. Awesome, sweet, and fantastic! No more swelling, no complaints of pain, no stiffness, and no horrid limping.

I'm not sure what triggered this little flare, I'm just thankful that it was short-lived and relatively minor. Holy cow, it stressed me out.

An enormous THANK YOU to everyone who sent their love, prayers, well wishes, and moral support. You have no idea how much that means to me.

Stupid Juvenile Arthritis. We hate you.