Monday, March 09, 2009 Saurav, Community Member, asks

Q: Orthopaedic Doctors or Rheumatologists!!! who can be better for RA treatments?

In September i was diagniosed with disc buldges in my lower back. I tried to get Phsiotherapy & Accupressure done. It gave me some relief but the pain came back again. Since november onwards i started geting pain in my joints too. I have stiff neck, fingers, Knees and my back early in the morning. I have been consulting orthopadic doctors and they made me do some blood tests. My Rheumatoid factor came negative but Anti CCP was positive, which as per my doctor means that i have 95% chances of RA. The doctor has put me on an antibiotic tab " HCQS" and a pain killer Myoril plus 4mg. Could anyone help me to know whom should i be consulting now " Orthopaedic Doctors or Rheumatologists ?

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Answers (5)
Lene Andersen, Health Guide
3/ 9/09 8:51pm

Blood test can be a little vague in helping to diagnose RA, as it is quite possible to have the disease while your RA factors negative.

 

Rheumatologists specialize in treating the various diseases captured under the arthritis umbrella, such as rheumatoid arthritis, scleroderma, lupus, etc. Orthopedic surgeons are doctors who specialize in surgery involving muscles and bones, including, but not limited to, things like joint replacement for people with severe RA damage. Therefore, you should get a referral to a rheumatologist to supervise the treatment of your RA, which will include medications that will hopefully prevent the kind of damage to your joints that might later require orthopedic surgery.

 

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bon410, Community Member
3/12/09 3:36pm

Hi Saurav, I am so sorry that you have RA. I have had it since I was 20 or so & am now in my 60's so I have been through a lot of meds and surgeries. My advice is a Rheumatologist at first. You need to start an aggressive treatment to prevent damage to your joints as best as can be done. The sooner treatment starts the better. It takes a while to find a treatment that is right for you so hang in there and if one doesn't work, or if one has side effects you can't tolerate ask for another. There are so many. If you need surgery down the road then an Orthopaedic would be helpful. I wish you well with your treatment. I am taking Relafen, Minocycline and prednisone along with Trezix for pain. There are no unpleasant side effects from these drugs for me. I have been on Methotrexate and gotten sick and other have made me sick or break me out in a rach.

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bon410, Community Member
3/12/09 3:38pm

Hi Saurav, I am so sorry that you have RA. I have had it since I was 20 or so & am now in my 60's so I have been through a lot of meds and surgeries. My advice is a Rheumatologist at first. You need to start an aggressive treatment to prevent damage to your joints as best as can be done. The sooner treatment starts the better. It takes a while to find a treatment that is right for you so hang in there and if one doesn't work, or if one has side effects you can't tolerate ask for another. There are so many. If you need surgery down the road then an Orthopaedic would be helpful. I wish you well with your treatment. I am taking Relafen, Minocycline and prednisone along with Trezix for pain. There are no unpleasant side effects from these drugs for me. I have been on Methotrexate and gotten sick and other have made me sick or break me out in a rash.  Good luck, Bon

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Lgl_Asst, Community Member
3/12/09 4:16pm

I would consult with a Rheumatologist as they can do a complete physical and get your family history and x-rays to help make the diagnosis and they know the current treatments for the disease and know all the symptoms and can probably help you a little more because they specialize in this type of disease, get  you into physical therapy and occupational therapy when needed, etc.  While anitbiotic protocol works for some it doesn't work for others so you want to go to a doctor who can help you with your medications and make sure the medicines are doing what they are supposed to do so you don't get further joint damage.  They can also make a positive diagnosis.  My first appointment after being diagnosed by my primary care physician was 1 hour and I spent the whole time with the doctor deciding on medication, getting my family history, getting x-rays, and blood work, etc. and he gave me information about the speicific medications I was on and on medications he may put me on depending on how I did, he let me know what to expect from the disease and what could be done when the pain got bad, etc.

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sandra, Community Member
3/14/09 11:48am

HI SUZURAY, MY RA FACTOR WAS NEGITIVE TOO. YOU DECINATELY NEED TO SEE A RHUMOTOLIGIST. SANDRA

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By Saurav, Community Member— Last Modified: 12/24/10, First Published: 03/09/09