Is this a high Rheumatoid factor?

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spidey23972
spidey23972 Member Posts: 21
edited 3. Sep 2015, 01:50 in Living with Arthritis archive
I had a blood test and xray's a good few weeks ago, which I posted on these boards. Anyhow I didn't realise how high my Rheumatoid factor blood results where, until the Dr whom does my herbal medicine and acupuncture pointed it out.
My Rheumatoid factor is 283, the reference range should be between 0-30!! Is this extraordinarily high, or a typical figure for someone recently diagnosed with RA? What was your RA factor?

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  • lindalegs
    lindalegs Member Posts: 5,393
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Spidey,

    i seem to remember mine being around 300 when I was diagnosed many, many years ago. During a more recent flare it was about 190 so my meds were changed. Generally, for me, when under control it's around 20.

    Hope this helps. :D

    Love,
    Love, Legs x
    'Make a life out of what you have, not what you're missing'
  • spidey23972
    spidey23972 Member Posts: 21
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Thanks lindalegs, it's always interesting to hear other people's experiences.
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,726
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    I've never known my RF but, as I recall, you've only recently been diagnosed and started on DMARDS (sulph and hydroxy) so they probably haven't properly kicked in yet.

    Please be careful with the herbal stuff as it can interact with your prescription meds. Here's what Arthritis Research UK says on the topic:

    "Generally speaking, herbal remedies are safe but sometimes they cause side-effects. These can include stomach upsets, sleeplessness and pains in your muscles or joints. Some herbal remedies may also interact with your prescribed medication.
    If you’re thinking of using these remedies, always buy them from a trusted manufacturer to make sure they’re a quality product, and discuss their use with your doctor first.
    - See more at: http://tinyurl.com/qa7v2gl "
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    I'm surprised that the rheumatologist didn't point it out - what medications have you been prescribed by him? That figure needs to be reduced asap, not only to bring the disease under control but to reduce the risk of damage. If I remember correctly you saw him in July? DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • trepolpen
    trepolpen Member Posts: 504
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Spidey , think mine was around 450 nearly 20 years ago when first told I had RA ,

    it means very little , just a guide & a way to find out if you have RA althought some people with raised RF dont have RA , dont think herbal medicine will control your RA & you will need some strong drugs to get this under control & stop any joint damage
  • DebraKelly
    DebraKelly Member Posts: 398
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    My RF is usually around 80/90 on a good day!
    On a bad day or flare up its around 140/150.

    I am not sure if this is a good or bad thing. It is based on your inflamtion levels and this does seem high to me!
  • spidey23972
    spidey23972 Member Posts: 21
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    dreamdaisy wrote:
    I'm surprised that the rheumatologist didn't point it out - what medications have you been prescribed by him? That figure needs to be reduced asap, not only to bring the disease under control but to reduce the risk of damage. If I remember correctly you saw him in July? DD
    I'm only just getting round to meeting with the specialised nurses tomorrow to start me on medication, nearly two months after the consultant decided that I need to be put on medication asap.I think they forgot about me, as I had to ring the nurses, to arrange an appointment, do you think I should have been seen a lot earlier? I'm being put on Sulfasalazine and Hydroxychloroquine. The doctor whom does my herbal medicine and acupuncture has assured me that the herbal medicine will not affect the drugs. I have been virtually pain free for months, I think the acupuncture and herbal medicine are helping me a lot. I don't feel like I have a crippling disease, perhaps I'm being a bit nieve, and not prepared for the pain and limited mobility that might be awaiting me in years to come. Will the pain be inevitable or could I be virtually pain free for the rest of my life with RA? (I'm 42).
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    The sulph and hydroxy are the usual first steps, I'm still on sulph (thirteen years in now) and probably will be until the end of my days, it does nothing for my psoriatic arthritis but it does keep my skin clear. I have a friend who also has PsA and he, lucky devil, is fine on sulph alone so I hope you join his gang rather than mine! I have completely forgotten about being pain-free which makes things a deal easier for me to manage but can make no prognosis about your future. Acupuncture did nothing for me, neither did homeopathy, supplements or reiki but if these are helping you then that is a good thing. They will not, however, affect the root cause of the RA, your over-active immune system.

    Please discuss the herbal stuff with those who know about sulph and hydroxy, whilst it's true that medical meds have their base in natural ingredients I remember being told very early on that I should avoid St John's Wort due to potentially harmful interactions (but then I am on the big guns in comparison to you). Do nothing to boost the immune system because that will trigger the arthritis, please ensure that you book a 'flu jab for this October, due to the sulph being a DMARD you will qualify for a free one so ensure your GP is aware of this.

    'Urgent' in the NHS is a strange concept: on the day-to-day running of clinics urgent can mean anything between next week, next month, six months. For consultants (who don't live in the real world as such) who knows what it means? I lost a year being bounced between rheumatology and orthopaedics with 'urgent' appointments. Ideally everyone would be seen, diagnosed accurately and on the meds within a week. Yeah, right. I've learned over the years to monitor my administration and to nudge sooner rather than later, I know I am one of many hundreds of patients so not memorable. DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben