All posts tagged: Anti-citrullinated protein antibody

How the docs diagnose RA

The course of RA is unique to each of us.  My RA announced itself  to me as  big and boisterous.  Initially, I had sharp pain in my left shoulder.  I thought it was from swimming as shoulders do get a workout in lap swimming.  Quickly hands, fingers, wrists, ankles, feet and toes joined in.  I was in total pain and largely incapacitated.  I sought salvation to my problem in the ER, the only solution at the time. In 2010 the American College of Rheumatology(ACR) and the European League Against Rheumatism(EULAR) formed a working group to replace the 1987 ACR classification criteria for RA with up to date classification criteria. RA is at its most destructive in the first 2 years.  It needs to be caught early and treated aggressively.  The 2010 Rheumatoid Arthritis Classification Criteria became a big diagnostic help. The group came up with a 10 point system that covers four RA categories:  joint involvement, serology, acute-phase reactants, duration of symptoms.  The target population for this scoring must be patients who have at least …

Tests for diagnosis of RA

There is a growing list of blood tests that help determine the diagnosis of RA. My Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate (ERS) and C-reactive protein (CRP) were off the charts. Both measure inflammation in the body. Yet, I was negative for the Rheumatoid factors, a variety of antibodies frequently present in people with RA. I was also negative for the anti-CCP antibodies, used to predict RA. I did have at least 15 joints inflamed for at least several months. Together the extremely high inflammatory markers plus the number of inflamed joints made the diagnosis an easy one.