Last week I had my first visit with the new Rheumatologist Mariko Ishimori at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. We discussed my medical history, current medications, she checked my joints and believes the Cimzia is working, it did not feel like it was working fully yet. We also discussed the muscle relaxers and I changed to doing two at night and one in the morning. This has helped improve sleeping through the night. We discussed my thyroid issues and she checked out my swollen lymph nodes and she has referred me to an Endocrinology doctor. After the visit we went across the hall for blood tests checking thyroid and Vitamin D again to see if the 2000 IU is working to bring my Vitamin D levels back up. Lloyd was able to take some photos during the visit at the doctors office and while I was having blood tests done. I will be going back for the results and see the Endocrinology doctor in about 2 weeks. I am not really looking forward to seeing another doctor.
Yesterday I went back to the Rheumatologist to get results of my blood tests and to have an ultra sound done on my thyroid. We went over the Vectra DA blood test, which I scored a 33. This means my Rheumatoid Arthritis aka Rheumatoid Autoimmune Disease is at a moderate level with the current cocktail of drugs. I will be having another one in three months to get a new number. It looks like anything above 44 is high activity (severe) and under 29 is low or mild activity. It sounded like the goal is to get it under 10. You can find more out about the Vectra DA test on their website. Vectra DA does have a program in place for financial assistance. For an example a single person having an income less than $54,450 a year could qualify.
Most of my other blood test came out good. Rheumatoid Factor still negative, no TB, no hepatitis, no lupus, anti-CCP negative, Cholesterol good, etc. The bone denisty test was good also.
The tests that were not good were:
Vitamin D issue fix will be to add a Vitamin D supplement at 2,000 IU a day to my cocktail. Also adding an Omega 3/6/9 supplement. and I have a refill for the Flexeril which was added to treatment at my last appointment 2 weeks ago. It has taken that much time for me to get used to the muscle relaxers and it does take 3 a day at 10 mg to be almost pain free. I have not been this pain free since fall of 2010 so it is a nice change.
I am not sure what the lipid or thyroid study or the CRP Hi Sensitive means. Maybe the thyroid is off because of the nodule on it? After finding out the blood test results I had an ultrasound done on the thyroid and she also did I think it was called an ECG but not sure. I will get those results in 2 weeks. She did ask if my previous scan reports gave a size of the nodule, I did not remember a size mentioned for it only the size of lymph nodes that are swollen. She said it should be checked every 6 months to make sure it is not growing. But nodules in the thyroid can happen with Rheumatoid Arthritis. She noted that besides the nodule in the right lobe of my thyroid that I had a very tiny cyst on my left lobe and that my heart looked good.