My GP ran blood tests as I have been experiencing excruciating pain in my wrists, fingers and hands since July 2011. I have several swollen fingers on both hands, mostly the index and ring fingers. I also have occasional pain in my ankles, knees and hips, especially around menstruation. My blood tests came back positive for rheumatoid factor and raised ESR. I was referred to the rheumatologist and was finally seen just before Christmas. He asked what my symptoms were and told me immediately I did not have a rheumatic condition. He gave a quick physical check and he told me I had carpal tunnel, flat feet and discharged me! I can't help thinking more checks should have been done. I've been in awful pain and broken down in the GP's office due to pain and frustration. My GP has suggested I should go privately to another rheumatologist as he believes I have Ra. I hope I don't have Ra but is this normally how a diagnosis is made?