Positive blood work questions

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Bcsur5er
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2013
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 9/8/2013 7:25 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi all. I'm new here and have some questions. For the past year and a half, I've been seeing a rheumatologist due to some "wacky" blood work. I say "wacky" because I have a positive ANA, positive anti-dsDNA and positive Rheumatoid factor, but no symptoms at all. My doctor said that occasionally RF can be persistently elevated when there is an occult malignancy somewhere in the body, and he order full scans. All scans came by clear.

He said that a small portion of healthy people will have a positive RF, although that is usually true for the elderly. I'm 50, so not quite there yet.

Normally he sees patients that come in with symptoms but blood work is negative, but he has never seen patients with persistently positive blood work and no symptoms at all. My last appointment was in June and while all blood work was still positive, I was completely symptom free.

Until now. about three weeks ago I developed pain and stiffness in the joints of two fingers on my left hand. My ring finger and middle finger are affected, but the ring finger is the more painful of the two. I don't see any noticeable swelling of the joint, but I am no longer able to get my ring over my knuckle. The joints are very stiff and painful in the morning, but the stiffness goes away after a few minutes. The pain is not what I would have thought arthritis would feel like. It is more of a burning pain. The pain persists throughout the day, but it is not bad enough to wake me up at night.

I've emailed my doctor with this new development, but I wondering if anyone here could offer any insight.

Thanks!

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 9/8/2013 11:39 PM (GMT -6)   
Sounds like your blood work was ahead of your symptoms for awhile. It may just begun rearing it's ugly head now.

Make sure doctor knows the changes going on.
Joy
Lupus, Fibromyalgia, Glaucoma, Asthma, Hypothyriodism, Sleep Apnea, OA, Depression, and Allergies

When life throws you lemons....
Pick them up and throw them right back at them! :))

Bcsur5er
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2013
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 9/9/2013 5:48 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks, Joy. Does it sound more like a lupus possibility or a rheumatoid arthritis possibility?

Lynnwood
Forum Moderator


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 7720
   Posted 9/9/2013 7:08 AM (GMT -6)   
I would say more like lupus pain - for me, lupus pain in the joints is sometimes accompanied by neropathy (of lupus) - a burning pain deep in the joints like someone poured burning acid in. Others describe it as a itching pain.
Lynnwood, Lupus & Sjogren's Moderator
DIAGNOSING LUPUS & LUPUS RESOURCES
"Life is far too important to be taken seriously" - Oscar Wilde

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 9/9/2013 2:06 PM (GMT -6)   
My pains feel like someone hit my joints with a sledge hammer at times.
Other times it's like fire burning down deep in my bones like Lynnwood.
Joy
Lupus, Fibromyalgia, Glaucoma, Asthma, Hypothyriodism, Sleep Apnea, OA, Depression, and Allergies

When life throws you lemons....
Pick them up and throw them right back at them! :))

Barbara Lee
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2003
Total Posts : 2889
   Posted 9/9/2013 9:53 PM (GMT -6)   
Well I don't want to confuse you, but I actually have both RA and Lupus. I have had lupus a lot longer than RA. It can be very difficult to tell which disease is bothering me at times.

However, I can say that like Lynnwood and Joy, I have the burning sensation, but I also have the stiffness. You mentioned that you're very stiff in the morning and it lessens through out the day. I do the exact same thing with my wrists, ankles, toes, and fingers. Usually, by 10 am or so the stiffness is totally gone.

My joint pain is still there as is swelling at times. According to my Rheumy normally with most RA patients they have stiffness in the morning and it eases as the day goes by. It's quite possible that you do have RA and not Lupus. Or, shame on me for saying, but you may have both RA/Lupus.

My RA factor was positive, but the confirming factor was an MRI. My Rheumy ordered an MRI of my hand that was the worst. The MRI showed that my joints in my thumb and middle were already starting to deform. Maybe, you could ask your Doctor to order and MRI to rule out the RA once and for all.

Hope I helped some. Hope you feel better soon and get a diagnosis real soon and start treatment.

Hugs,
Barbara
DX- RA, Lupus, Fibro, LGL Leukemia, Pulmonary Hypertension, Bells Palsy, Gastroparsis, Blood Clots, Glaucoma, Chronic Pericarditis & Pleurisy, Severe Anemia. Way to many medications to list.
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