Is this a typical symptom?

bizzie54 Member Posts: 2
My blood tests came back 'zero negative' and scans didn't show what the consultant expected but is treating me for rheumatoid arthritis. I've declined Methotrexate as I don't want to take such a strong drug if I don't have arthritis. What puzzles me is that I can have pain/inflammation in a joint which disappears after a few hours on it's own, as suddenly as it came and then I can get pain in another joint later in the day.
Does anyone else experience this?


  • helpline_team
    helpline_team Posts: 3,413
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Dear Bizzie,

    Thanks for getting in touch with Arthritis Care.

    I am sorry to hear you’ve been having some difficulties with pain and inflammation in your joints.

    From what I have understood, you rheumatologist has diagnosed you with seronegative arthritis which is an inflammatory type of arthritis. This is very similar to rheumatoid arthritis – the main difference between them is a specific antibody called the rheumatoid factor, which in the case of seronegative, does not show up in a blood test.

    In inflammatory arthritis, your immune system attacks your joints. You say you are puzzled by the joint pain that seems to come and then seems to come and go of it’s own accord. These sound like flare-ups are unfortunately common symptoms of the condition.

    Seronegative arthritis is treated in much the same way as RA, which is perhaps why your consultant has offered you Methotrexate.

    We have a fact sheet that might be useful here:

    Here is a link to our booklets:

    It is obviously a difficult time for you at the moment, you mention the scans didn’t show what the doctors expected and if you’d like to talk about this or just get some further support, please feel free to call us on the helpline: Freephone 0808 800 4050 10am – 4pm.

    Kind regards,

    Helplines Team
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello, I am a forum member who has a sero-negative form of arthritis - I went undiagnosed for five years so it was too late before I was given anything to help. The nett result is that not much does and I have many affected joints plus OA to boot: I am now in my eighteenth year of this malarkey.

    None of us want to take these meds but we realise the benefits of them - they slow the progress of the disease and that is vital to preserve what you have for as long as you can have it. Any form of arthritis is degenerative and progressive but with an auto-immune form the meds can effectively slow both aspects. I wish you well. DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • EnglishRose63
    EnglishRose63 Member Posts: 5
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi, I was diagnosed with sero negative rheumatoid arthritis nearly 7 years ago. It is very much RA, just because it doesn't show up in your bloods doesn't mean you don't have it my consultant said. I had steroid injections in my hands and shoulders, which was great, for a while. I was put on methotrexate and it worked great for a few years. I stopped talking it when I was having 'a good week' and I am regretting it now as I have lots of flares and I have lumps on my fingers that look ugly.

    I'm seeing my rheumatology consultant again on Tuesdays and am hoping he puts me back on methotrexate.. it does help, and like people have said, it slows down the disease. Have a think about it, I'm sure you'll do the right thing for you. Take care X
  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 3,635
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Englishrose63

    Welcome to the forums, where you will find all sorts of help for arthritis.

    This is quite an old thread and you may get some replies here. It would be better to post a new thread on the Living With Arthritis board where you will get answers to any questions you would like to ask.

    All best wishes
    Mod B
  • helpline_team
    helpline_team Posts: 3,413
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Englishrose63

    Thank you for your post to Helplines. If you'd like a chat about your arthritis you'd be very welcome to ring our free phone. It sounds like you know what you'd like from your rheumatologist. I suppose I'm wondering whether you'd be able to ask them directly about going back on your methotrexate?

    And the moderator did suggest posting on Living with arthritis too - to get some other opinions of other folk too.

    Do let us know how you get on - and you'd be most welcome to ring for a chat.

    Kind regards