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Forum Name: Rheumatology Topics

Question: Negative RH Factor and Lupus/Sjogren's


 mary1965 - Tue Apr 28, 2009 12:21 pm

My primary care doctor thinks I have a form of lupus and/or Sjogren's, possibly sclerdoma (sp?). I have very painful joints in my hands that he put me on Meloxicam for but it is not working. Blood work indicated to him an auto immune system problem and I have an appointment with a rheumatologist May 11. My PCP called today to tell me that my rh factor was negative. Can your rh factor be negative but you still have rheumatoid arthritis, Sjogren's and/or Lupus? Something has got to be wrong because I'm tired ALL of the time, swelling of ankles, pain in legs and hands, headaches, almost passing out, etc. Also, have been a type 1 diabetic for 30 years.
 glittergirl_2002 - Tue May 05, 2009 5:22 pm

I would like to know the same thing. I experienced frequent pain between 2007 and 2008 with my neck and back. After getting it checked out and not getting anywhere I just kind of moved on and learned to deal with it. Then in Aug 2008 I started getting pain in my knees, intense pain. I hurt to stand up, to run, to even go up stairs. In both knees. Then I began getting pain in both wrist and both ankles. It sounded like Rheumatiod Arthritis, however when the doctor tested me my RH and other arthritis tests came back negative to include Sjogrens, which he tested for me because I have been experiencing dry mouth consistently for 2 months, and have to take restasis for dry eyes. I was devestated bc the only thing worse than being in pain is not knowing why you're in pain. And at 25 I shouldn't feel like I'm in a 70 year old body!

Even though the RH test came back negative, is it still possible that I could have rheumatoid arthritis or is more likely that I have something else?

Like her I am tired ALL the time. I've even began taking B12 shots to try and help combat the fatigue. It's ridiculous how tired I get. Even when I don't do anything strainful I'm tired. I'm eat healthy and a good healthy weight (I'm in the military so I have to make height and weight standards).

What's the likelyhood that I still have arthritis or Rheumatoid arthritis? Or is it probably something else?
 Tom Plamondon PA-C - Fri May 08, 2009 3:17 pm

User avatar Hello,
I would add anti-CCP (antibody specific for rheumatoid arthritis), CBC, sed rate, CRP, and ANA to the rheumatoid factor to assess for RA.

With clinical exam, labs, and xrays, RA can be diagnosed. The RF can be negative and still have RA.

Early diagnosis and treatment of RA is important to prevent joint degeneration. So discuss this with your rheumatologist or family physician.

Also, for other auto immune diseases specific antibody testing may help differentiate between similar diseases.

Take care.

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