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Old 04-10-2005, 02:48 AM   #1
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Is it possible to have an autoimmune disease with neg ESR & CRP?

Hi all,
I've already received some good advice over on the nutritional disorders board, but thought someone here may be able to answer my questions or have a similar problem.

I'm 23, female, and suffering extreme fatigue among other symptoms. Since I was a child I've had numerous vague, seemingly unconnected symptoms that seemed to have earned me a reputation as a chronic malingerer, but frankly, I feel my life sucks!
I've had chest pain unexpectedly which made it hurt to breathe, dizziness on standing and occasional fainting where I'd come round shaking uncontrollably, breathlessness on mild exertion (even while exercising regularly, in my early teens), Raynaud's Phenomonen - intense itching on my hands and feet, which would turn purple and neon orange in the cold or if standing for more than a few minutes, intense back pain (especially in the extreme lower back), gastrointestinal symptoms such as severe abdominal pain, bloating, gas, and alternating constipation and diarreah (stools sometimes with mucous and floating). Migraines and sudden headaches, joint pain and aches (especially in my fingers and knees) muscle cramps, painful periods, chronic sore throats, depression since early teens unresponsive to medication. The symptoms are not all present at once, but will come and go. The fatigue however is almost constant.
I've also suffered a stillbirth in 2002 which was unexplained. As I understand it, I had tests for blood clotting disorders following my stillbirth which were normal. I have since had a successful pregnancy and am breastfeeding a 9 month old.

I recently saw my Dr. who said I was probably over diagnosing myself (huh? I was just listing my complaints and asking her for a diagnosis!) and told me I probably have IBS and should eat more fibre and drink more water, which I have plenty of already. To her credit she ran a full blood panel, which to my disappointment came back normal. Iron is normal, B12 is normal, kidney, liver function, cholesterol, glucose, thyroid, all normal. She did an ESR which came back at 5 mm/hour, and CRP which came back at <3 mg/L, so again, normal. She said all Mums get tired and had I considered a massage! (Massage does not relieve my back pain).

My mother has also had health problems, (some of them age related) such as diabetes, high cholesterol, osteoarthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, pancreatitis, (which nearly killed her) asthma and unexplained allergic reactions with swelling of the lips and face. She had her gallbladder out (related to the pancreatitis I think). My brother had a childhood dairy allergy and appendicitis, and my sister has a potentially life threatening allergy to cold (cold urticaria) and iron deficiency anemia. Both of them had childhood asthma. I also have a first cousin with type 1 insulin dependant diabetes.

I will be starting an elimination diet soon to see if I have a gluten intolerance (my 3rd cousin with similar symptoms has one). I guess what I'm asking, is whether it's possible to have an immune disorder with a neg ESR & CRP, and normal CBC? Is this all in my head? I'm so sick and tired of this (literally!) that sometimes I just want to give up. My doc says it's IBS, and bascially suck it up and live with it, but I don't think I can cope with a life that is such a complete and utter drag as this. I have a beautiful daughter yet wonder why I go on sometimes, as I'm snappy and irritable and not even a good mother anymore.
I'm sure there are many much sicker people than me...just more stoic! lol
Thankyou if you even read this far, it's long-winded I know.

 
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Old 04-10-2005, 09:02 AM   #2
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Re: Is it possible to have an autoimmune disease with neg ESR & CRP?

What are ESR & CRP?

I'm sorry your doctor isn't taking your complaints very seriously, by the way. Apathetic doctors make me

 
Old 04-10-2005, 04:36 PM   #3
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Re: Is it possible to have an autoimmune disease with neg ESR & CRP?

CRP is C-reactive protein and ESR is erthrocyte sedimentation rate, they check for non-specific inflammation and she said if I had an autoimmune disorder they'd be positive. Thanks for your concern. She's nice as a person, but she really doesn't seem to have the time to find out why I feel this way. Doctors over here write out prescriptions for iron tablets and antidepressants for anyone under 50, and that's about it.

 
Old 04-24-2005, 03:56 PM   #4
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Re: Is it possible to have an autoimmune disease with neg ESR & CRP?

You need to see a gastrointerologist for the GI symptoms. You have some of the symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease. BTW, I have rheumatoid arthritis and my sed rate has never been high. My CRP, yes, but the sed rate, no.

 
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