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Is the RA factor enough to predict rheumatoid arthritis?

Q: My RA test and ANCA test reports are negative. I request you to kindly inform me whether I am suffering from Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) or any other disease? I would also like to know the exact symptoms of RA.

A:The diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis is not predicated on just a rheumatoid factor. In fact 15% of patients with RA are rheumatoid factor negative. Besides, it is possible that somebody who is positive today may be negative at a later date. Rheumatoid arthritis is an inflammatory variety of arthritis affecting multiple joints in a generally symmetrical fashion on both sides of the body. It is associated with a particular pattern of joint involvement. After a period of time many patients have some X-ray changes too. The ESR may be raised at some point in the course of the illness.

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