Need help for diagnose

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New Member

Date Joined Apr 2017
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 4/21/2017 7:18 AM (GMT -7)   
Recently, my wife did a physical exam. The blood work came back is bad It shows that her RF is 31, ESR is 65, ANA is negative. Her doctor refers her to a RA doctor. The appointment is one month later. We never think about she has RA. At this moment, my wife only has a slightly knee joint pain when she climb the stairs, her fingers and toes joint has no pain.She feels fatigue but that may caused by her diabetes. The symptoms is not that much. Does this sound she has RA early stage? Or she has no RA? Since the Dr appointment is one month later. I do feel worry.

New Member

Date Joined Apr 2017
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 4/21/2017 4:03 PM (GMT -7)   
Any suggestion? Should my wife take the aggressive treatment to prevent the complication later? Please help.

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 15150
   Posted 4/21/2017 6:13 PM (GMT -7)   
Hello Peter, I happened across your post. My guess is the dr referred your wife to a rheumatologist is that correct? If so, that type of dr works with all kinds of arthritis conditions. There is a chance she does not have RA, that is up to the specialist to determine. He will do his own exam & order lots of lab work before making a diagnosis. At this time until she gets diagnosed with whatever, I would not worry about what treatment may or may not be necessary. I know you probably, well that is easier said than done. My point is don't stress yourselves out it will not help either of you. There is a lot of treatment available to treat RA without starting on the more aggressive medications.

Take care.
Moderator in Chronic Pain & Psoriasis Forums

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2014
Total Posts : 2076
   Posted 4/21/2017 10:22 PM (GMT -7)   
Hello Peter,
Welcome to the HE forum.
I'm sorry your wife is having to wait so long to see a rheumy. Hopefully he can give her better answers, but you should both try to put the appt out of your mind for awhile. There is really nothing you can do for treatment until then except be there for her.

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2013
Total Posts : 548
   Posted 4/23/2017 4:55 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Peter, what a great husband you are looking for answers for your wife. I have had RA for 25 years now and I would say to keep a little notepad that you write any questions you have down on (or keep them on your phone) when you think of them because although it is a long wait to see the Doctor it will seem like time flies by once you are in their office. I had many questions I forgot to ask when I first went in because of the amount of information my Doctor told me about my disease. I was overwhelmed with it all.

Also, take pictures on your phone of ANY swelling she has while waiting for your appointment. Mine was not bad at all the day I went in and it was hard to explain it when a simple picture would show the Doctor exactly what is happening.

Make sure that you talk to them about the fatigue or any other symptoms she has. Fatigue is a major side effect of RA or any disease which affects your immune system. Document it on a scale of 1-10 and which days it is happening.

You can read up as well on treatments and medications but I caution that this can be a lot to consider and also the side effects can be very intimidating as well. Depending on how the Doctor diagnoses your wife they will recommend a treatment plan. I have very aggressive RA so my Doctor was very aggressive with treatment. She was very good though about answering all my questions and also about stopping a medication when I had a bad reaction to it.

I hope that she continues to do well and I hope that your visit goes good. There are a lot of people here who are very helpful and can help to answer your questions.

Take care -Don

New Member

Date Joined Apr 2017
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 4/23/2017 7:10 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you all the responses. I feel better now. So far, my wife still has no symptom except the blood work. I will write everything down before we go to the doctor's appointment. Thanks again for all the people who answer my post.


Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2010
Total Posts : 147
   Posted 4/26/2017 3:40 PM (GMT -7)   
My RA started the same - with the knee pain it felt like the contusion. My blood work on the other hand wasn't showing any signs of RA for a long time but with severe symptoms and it was harder to figured out.

I would also find the Dr Naturopath - he/she may help with the diet and natural supplements - it helped me a lot! That Dr may run the food sensitivity testing which helps to determine what she an eat and what she should avoid. Also I would try applying ice to the places where she hurts

New Member

Date Joined Apr 2017
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 6/5/2017 8:17 AM (GMT -7)   
Finally, my wife went to the RA doctor. She examined all the joints and said everything is fine. She found a little swell from the palm to the bottom joints of the fingers but not the joints. She took some blood and send my wife home. Last week, she called my wife and told my wife the blood work results is positive and she will prescribe a medicine for my wife. She said the medicine will take several weeks to work and there is side effect for the eyes. We haven't pick up the prescription yet, so I don't know the name of the medicine. I have no experience on that, I have 3 questions and hope someone can answer.
1. My wife still has no pain on any joint yet. Do we need any symptoms appear before we can diagnosis it as Ra? Will the blood work false positive or cause by other things?
2. Should we wait for some symptoms before we start medication? The symptoms may never show up.
3.Since my wife already taking blood pressure, cholesterol and diabetes pills, we worry about the drug interaction, any body has this situation?

New Member

Date Joined Jun 2017
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 6/13/2017 3:33 PM (GMT -7)   
Peter, the doctor will prescribe medication(s) but there's a lot that your wife can do to improve her health. The inflammation in her blood is high (ESR 65) which is not good. To really help herself, she needs to do whatever she can and you can be a big help. These kinds of things are: study and eat foods that lower inflammation, stop eating: processed foods, red meat, fast foods, pastries, alcohol. Loose weight if overweight and walk. In the end, the doctor can't heal her - she has to heal herself, and that starts with stop doing things that are not healthy - and that starts with education.
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