Rheumatoid Arthritis - When to Call a Doctor
Call your health professional immediately if you have:Sudden, unexplained swelling and pain in any joint or joints.Joint pain associated with a fever or rash.Pain that is so severe that you cannot use the joint.Call your health professional within the next few days if you have:Mild to moderate joint pain that continues and has not improved for over 6 weeks.Side effects that occur with large doses
Rheumatoid Arthritis - What Increases Your Risk
The only known risk factor for rheumatoid arthritis is a possible inherited factor in some families (genetic predisposition). A genetic factor may affect how the immune system functions, causing inflammation and eventual destruction of the membranes lining the joints.Other factors that may influence your risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis include:Being female. Rheumatoid arthritis affects ...
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Other Treatment
Other types of treatment that may help you control some of the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis include:Physical therapy, to improve joint function. Physical therapy includes exercise, hot and cold therapy, and massage. Spa therapy, such as whirlpools or heated wax, provide some relief of pain during the therapy and perhaps for a short time afterward.8Occupational therapy, to learn how to ...
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Health Tools
Health tools help you make wise health decisions or take action to improve your health.Actionsets are designed to help people take an active role in managing a health condition. Taking an active role in the management of your rheumatoid arthritis ...
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Cause
The cause of rheumatoid arthritis is not fully understood. In some people, a genetic abnormality may increase the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis. One or more of these genetic abnormalities may make it more likely that the body's immune system will attack the tissues of your body's joints. It is possible that bacteria, a virus, or some other foreign substance may trigger this immune ...
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Exams and Tests
No single laboratory test can diagnose rheumatoid arthritis. Instead, rheumatoid arthritis is most reliably diagnosed on the basis of symptoms and by eliminating other diseases that can cause similar symptoms. Symptoms that help in diagnosis are stiffness and pain in the same joints on both sides of the body (symmetrical), morning stiffness, and development of rheumatoid nodules.A medical history
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Overview
What is rheumatoid arthritis?Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a relatively common disease of the joints. In rheumatoid arthritis, the membranes or tissues (synovial membranes) lining the joints become inflamed (synovitis). Over time, the inflammation may destroy the joint tissues, leading to disability. Rheumatoid arthritis affects women twice as often as men, and frequently begins between the ages ..
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Living With Rheumatoid Arthritis
Living with rheumatoid arthritis often means making changes to your lifestyle. You can do things at home, such as staying active and taking medications, to help relieve your symptoms and prevent the disease from getting worse.It is common to feel pain, fatigue, and joint stiffness with rheumatoid arthritis. Some activities may worsen your discomfort, while others might provide relief. Thousands ..
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Frequently Asked Questions
Learning about rheumatoid arthritis:What is rheumatoid arthritis?What causes rheumatoid arthritis?What are the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis?What increases my risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis?What happens with rheumatoid arthritis?What else could be causing my symptoms?When should I see my doctor?How common is rheumatoid arthritis?Being diagnosed:How is rheumatoid arthritis ...
Rheumatoid Arthritis - Medications
Medications are usually needed to treat rheumatoid arthritis. The type of medications used depends on the severity of your disease, how fast it is progressing, and how it affects your daily life.Medications to treat rheumatoid arthritis are used to:Relieve or reduce pain.Improve daily function.Reduce joint inflammation. Signs of joint inflammation include swelling, tenderness, and limited range ..