Time To Dump Rheumatoid Factor Levels For RA Diagnosis?

May 23, 2011 — Anti-citrullinated protein antibody (ACPA) is a better tool for classifying rheumatoid arthritis (RA) than rheumatoid factor (RF) levels are and should replace RF levels when the 2010 American College of Rheumatology/European Union League Against Rheumatism (ACR/EULAR) criteria for RA diagnosis are revised, a panel of European experts writes in the May issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism.

Read More: http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/743199

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5 Comments
5 comments
  1. Mary Morrison says:

    I agree completely! I never tested positive for the RF levels. Finally after 8 years of misdiagnoses, my current rheumy did the ACPA and found I had RA.

  2. Dr Karen Hoving says:

    Interesting. I was diagnosed with SLE,in ’94. Then RA in 95 via xrays. I have high ANA Titres (and almost 100% of SLE criteria) but NO RA Factor – but I have had hip replace, wrist replace, and triple arthrodesis on foot. I have RA (and am responding to Retuxin btw) but if they based it on JUST the RA factor no one would be treating me!

    Clearly I have it – they have seen the mouse bite on xrays. But everyone seems “fascinated” that I don’t have RA factor! I am going to send this to my Rheumy (not that it matters I guess at this point!) Thanks,
    Dr Karen

  3. Deborah says:

    Couldn’t agree more. I would have thought it would have been a gold standard of measurement as this particular test has been used for several years now among rheumatologists. I find it soooo frustrating with these organizations mulling over recommended standards. Geeezzz…sometimes I feel like there are two speeds with ra…stop and reverse.

  4. Sherry says:

    Amazing what it takes to get diagnosed with Autoimmune disease.I n the begining I would have horriable symptioms and go to the MD,My blood work just didn’t show it!!Then He did the ACPA.Sky high!!Finally got treatment,but boy, did I suffer until then.

  5. Laura says:

    I think it is still helpful and should not be completely eliminated. I believe there should be multiple tests. My RF is very high (240) and enabled a quick diagnosis. 6 months later my sister was also diagnosed and has a high RF (191). We were in out 20′s so the doctor sent us for that expecting a negative result. 8 months after my sister got her dx, our father was diagnosed. His RF is NEGATIVE, but because we both have it, they dx’d my father through other methods. Knowing my RF is really high, I was informed that it could mean a more aggressive form. Without knowing that I would be questioning why I’m not responding as well to the meds (including biologics). I was only diagnosed 2 years ago and I’ve already been through a DMARD, on biologics working 6 months of dx and I have tried 2 biologics and likely to change to another. The RF is important to know for some. But I would use the other test too.

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