Negative Rheumatoid factor?

Can I still have Psoriatic Arthritis despite having a negative rheumatoid factor?

my ESR is around 37, I am a fifty year old woman with psoriasis since I was 7 years old, and have rotten toenails because of it.

GP keeps telling me that my pains are due to osteo arthritis as my Rhem factor is negative, but I have had these pains since my 20s, and was diagnosed 7 years ago with fibromyalgia (which I still think was really psoriatic arthritis, but he ruled it out at the time, again because my factor was negative)

In the past I have had a GP and 2 ortho consultants suggest psoriatic arthritis, but rheum factor negative then as well.

I have heard though that this doesn't rule out psoriatic arthritis, though

XG

3 Replies

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  • I think you would be best to ask to be referred to a rheumatologist. If you read the article 'Diagnosing Psoriatic Arthritis' on psoriasis-association.org.uk you will see that 'the rheumatoid factor is usually negative on people with psoriatic arthritis'. However, a rheumatologist should be able to perform further tests and diagnose you properly.

    Good luck.

  • Thanx Genevieve.

    I will take a printout of the above article in with me next time I see the GP. I will also find a copy of the previous consultants letters with the refs to PsA on them from my hospital records (as they are not on the GP records due to a lot of my notes being mixed up and lost at the last practice - at this practice they put 3 other pateints records with mine, so nowhere is safe :-/ ).

    I have read since that if the condition isn't found in the first 6 months, it is harder to treat, bit hopefully if I do get treatment at this stage it could stop it from getting worse. So I shouldn't be sitting on it much longer.

    Thanks again :-)

  • I have PsA but negative rheumatoid factor and there are several PsA members on the site who can confirm the same. I find that PsA is almost a mysterious condition. If a negative RH factor, GPs won't be able to help and consultants can only conjecture based on some tell-tale symptoms. For some people it can have extreme negative effects on their daily life and some others just have tolerable pain with little joint problems. If you have already seen a consultant and are still in doubt then researching and reading about other PsA sufferers can help you conclude what your condition can be.

    Best wishes

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