My rheumatologist explained that psoriatic arthritis is a form of arthritis caused by an overactive immune system that can affect not only the body’s joints but also the skin. I’m not alone. About 1 million Americans have psoriatic arthritis. Like rheumatoid arthritis, people with psoriatic arthritis may experience pain, stiffness and swelling of the joints. Psoriatic arthritis patients may also have skin lesions that are similar to those seen in patients with plaque psoriasis. However, there are important differences between these three conditions, making it crucial to see a rheumatologist or dermatologist who can make the right diagnosis and help you manage your condition.
Once I saw my rheumatologist and received the information I needed to understand my symptoms, learn about my diagnosis and make an informed decision about my treatment options, I felt empowered and confident that together we would find the right treatment to manage my condition. We discussed the benefits and risks of each option and made a decision on which would be best for me. Since then, I have been diligent about taking my treatment and have followed my rheumatologist’s recommendations to improve my overall health to help me stay “On Course” both professionally and at home. I’ve continued to play golf and have been able to keep doing fun things with my family, like playing catch or going for a swim or a hike. I feel good again!