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RA Factor Level

Question about RA Factor Level ansered by Rusty on 02/12/08.

QUESTION: I was told my RA is 510 - I have not started taking any medications.
I will see a RA specialist this week.
What can I expect to happen?
Will this cripple me?


Answer to the RA level question.


As a two time survivor of cancer who also suffers from arthritis, I understand the stress and worry associated with an unwanted diagnosis.

It is hard to say what you can expect to happen at this visit. It depends on how much diagnostic work you have already had. I would expect that the Rheumatologist is going want to do a couple of other test to make sure what type of autoimmune disease you have as an elevated RA Factor can be associated with more than Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Once he or she has a specific diagnosis then a treatment plan will be developed. Over the next year you can expect to have several visits to the Rheumatologist because most often a treatment plan needs to be monitored and adjusted to make sure it is working for you.

To answer the main question, "Will this cripple me", I can not say for sure. With modern treatments the answer is probably not any time soon. Autoimmune diseases are complicated conditions that are still not fully understood. Advancements are made every year. So you can expect that over the few years treatments are only going to get better. So I expect that the odds are in your favor that you will not see disability any time soon if ever.

I wish you the best with your up coming visit to the Rheumatologist and a long and healthy life.


Follow up question

I am going to see the doctor on Weds. What should I ask him? should I suggest
other tests?


Not knowing what test you have already done it would be impossible to suggest other test.

The Rheumatologist will ask you about your symptoms and look at the work you have already had done and will make a decision on what test should be run. Rheumatologist are experts in their fields and most are good doctors. He or she should be able to work with you to come up with an exact diagnosis.

Here is an article about keeping a medical journal. Keeping a journal will help you better communicate with your doctors.

I understand that this is a stressful time. I have been there myself.



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