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Is it difficult to get an RA diagnosis?

  1. RA affects every individual a little bit differently, so in some cases an accurate diagnosis can be a bit difficult to come by. Unfortunately, there is no single test that definitively determines whether or not someone has RA. Instead, an RA diagnosis is made from a combination of blood tests, x-rays, medical history, and physical exam. Here's an article that explains more about the criteria used to diagnose RA: https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/diagnosis/ https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/treatment/

    1. Yes. RA presents so notoriously differently in different patients, it's frequently diagnosed incorrectly, and frequently more than once. Disease indicators such as the RF factor in the blood, elevated CRP levels and sedimentation rates may not be there in some patients. So complaints of symptoms like stiffness, joint pain, and fatigue are misdiagnosed. I've heard of some patients who waited for a diagnosis for five years or more.

      1. Getting an RA diagnosis can take time and lots of doctor's visits. Unfortunately, autoimmune diseases are complex and so a diagnosis is not simple. Additionally, symptoms can be similar to other conditions, so it is a process to rule out other possible diagnoses. Your doctor may need to conduct a variety of tests, in addition to an examination. You may also be referred to a rheumatologist, who specializes in autoimmune diseases. Learn more about the process and possible tests from this article: https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/diagnosis/

        1. It can often be difficult and frustrating to obtain an RA diagnosis, in fact this article from our editorial team deals with exactly this issue: https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/living/getting-definitive-diagnosis-can-frustrating-process/. In addition, here is an article looking at the medical process behind achieving a diagnosis: https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/diagnosis/.

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