Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Font Size

Rheumatoid Arthritis Tougher on Women?

Study: Among Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients, Women Report More Severe Symptoms, Pain, and Fatigue
WebMD Health News
Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

Jan. 14, 2009 -- Rheumatoid arthritis may not only be more common in women than men, it may also take a tougher toll on women, a new study shows.

The study, published online in Arthritis Research & Therapy, included about 6,000 patients in 25 countries, including the U.S.

The patients completed surveys about their pain, fatigue, swollen joints, and rheumatoid arthritis treatment.

Women reported more severe rheumatoid arthritis symptoms than men, although there weren't major gender differences in rheumatoid arthritis treatment. Women were also less likely to be in remission for their rheumatoid arthritis; 30% of the men were in remission, compared to about 17% of the women.

The reason for the gender gap isn't clear. But the researchers -- who included Tuulikki Sokka, MD, PhD, of Jyvasyla Central Hospital in Finland -- have a theory.

Sokka's team writes that "women are not as physically strong as men," and that the difference in size and strength between men and women may mean that a disease like rheumatoid arthritis "may be more harmful to a woman than a man."

Today on WebMD

rubbing hands
Avoid these 6 common mistakes.
mature couple exercising
Decrease pain, increase energy.
mature woman threading needle
How much do you know?
Swelling, fatigue, pain, and more.
Lucille Ball
Hand bones X-ray
prescription pills
Woman massaging her neck
woman roasting vegetables in oven
Woman rubbing shoulder
Working out with light weights