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Do I have rheumatoid arthritis?

Q: I am a 32 years old man suffering from intolerable pain in the small joints like fingers, feet and hands. I have got all tests done like rheumatoid arthritis, and all reports were normal. But my uric acid and erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) are at a high level. How can I control it?

A:There 2 points to be noted:

  1. Presence or absence or rheumatoid factor is not diagnostic of any disease; this test is very nonspecific. 70% of patients with a disease called rheumatoid arthritis are positive for this test but 30% of patients with rheumatoid arthritis are negative for this test. The diagnosis is made by clinical presentation and detailed examination of the patient by an expert rheumatologist. Therefore you must immediately find out a rheumatologist nearest to you and get an appointment with him/her for proper diagnosis and treatment of your ailment.
  2. Uric acid has nothing to do with joint diseases; therefore, it should not be implicated in your joint problem. Of course those who have high uric acid levels are likely to get high blood pressure and kidney problem later in life. Therefore, uric aid is a marker of poor life style and lack of regular exercise, over-eating and obesity. For this you will have to discuss the problem with you general physician.

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