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Posted by CB on October 31, 1999 at 10:20:20:

In Reply to: Should I be tested? posted by Annette on October 29, 1999 at 23:55:54:

: I have had cronic back pain sense a car accident 18 years ago. To make a long, painful story short, I have had other problems arise. Over the years my lower back has gotten worse. During the delivery of my last child, in January of 1999, I was talked into having an epidoral, which went terribly wrong. It only numbed the right half of my body and when the DR. inserted the cathider he hit my spinal cord. This caused my back problem to be worse. I was in physical therapt for about 4 months and I was feeling better. However, my insurance ran out and I could no longer go. I still did my exercises though. Anyway, I got a job and reinjured my back. Sence then I have been having a great deal of pain in my joints. The back of my left knee constantly hurts. My hips constantly hurt and pop out of socket. And now, my left thumb joint and my right shoulder are constantly hurting and popping out of socket. I went to the DR> today and he doesn't know what is causing it but he mentioned Rheumatoid Arthritis, but insisted that if I had that they would have known a long time ago. I ask how you would test for that and he told me , by doing a blood test. The thing is, he didn't order the test. Should I have the blood test done or does this sound like it may be something other than Rheumatoid Arthritis?
: Thank you,
: Annette

Your Dr. probably didn't test because your symptoms don't sound like the small joint pain typical of RA. There is a good description of RA on the National Arthritis web page...look at some of the descriptions of symptoms. As for testing, there is sedimentation rate blood test. However, it is only positive in a % of RA patients. Good luck, CB

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