When arthritis kills...
Just want to take a moment to send warm fuzzy thoughts of healing and strength to the friends and family of Laura from Stills Life, a blog she created to document her struggled with Stills Disease, who passed away recently from Stills Disease complications. When my pain management doctor told me he was pretty sure I had Stills disease, hers was the first blog that I checked out, and it gave me a ton of good information. I never had the pleasure of talking to Laura, but, like I feel with so many of you, I feel like I knew her somewhat vicariously, from what she shared on her blog.
Autoimmune arthritis kills. Pure and simple. It kills. It’s deadly. Yet so often, we’re grouped in with those who have wear-and-tear osteoarthritis, and people don’t seem to grasp the true nature of the beast.
Salmon Colored Rash
Picking up a salmon colored rash on physical examination, a physician would have to think about 3 differentials:
1. Typhoid fever
2. Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis
3. Adult’s still fever
A child has a 2 week history of spiking fevers, which have been as high as 40˚C (104˚F). She has spindle-shaped swelling of finger joints and complains of upper sternal pain. When she has fever, the parents note a faint salmon-coloured rash that resolves with resolution of the fever. She has had no conjunctivitis or mucositis, but her heart sounds are muffled and she has increased pulsus paradoxus. Which of the following is the most likely diagnosis?
a. Rheumatic fever
b. Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis
c. Toxic synovitis
d. Septic arthritis