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What are the tests required to diagnose joint pain?

Q: My 56 years old mother is suffering from joint pains in her knees, elbow and back. What are the tests required, which can help the doctor identify the problem?

A:The two most likely causes of multiple joint pains in this age group are either degenerative (wear and tear) or inflammatory (such as Rheumatoid arthritis etc). She should have a full blood count, ESR, CRP to start with. If these tests are suggestive of inflammatory process, further tests should be organised in consultation with the treating Rheumatologist/Orthopaedic doctor.

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