Skip to content
Font Size

Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis - Symptoms

The most common symptoms of all forms of juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) include:

  • Joint pain and swelling. They may come and go, but they are most often persistent.
  • Joint stiffness in the morning.
  • Irritability, refusal to walk, or protecting or guarding a joint. You might notice your child limping or trying not to use a certain joint.
  • Often unpredictable changes in symptoms, from periods with no symptoms (remission) to flare-ups.

Even though pain is a common symptom of JIA, your child may not be able to describe the pain. Or he or she may be used to the pain. To know if your child is in pain, look for changes such as stiff movements, rubbing a joint or muscle, or avoiding movement.

Recommended Related to Rheumatoid Arthritis

Coping With the Pain of Rheumatoid Arthritis

Being in pain can be the hardest part of living with rheumatoid arthritis. While medications help, they don't always make the pain go away completely. Coping with pain means acknowledging that the problem is not just the pain itself. Constant pain has an effect on your whole life. Most people with rheumatoid arthritis are faced with frequent or ongoing pain. While you may not be able to avoid pain, you can take control of the situation. Is the pain of rheumatoid arthritis starting to affect yo...

Read the Coping With the Pain of Rheumatoid Arthritis article > >

Other symptoms vary depending on which type of JIA your child has.

Systemic JIA can cause fever spikes and rash.

  • The fever usually reaches 103 °F (39.5 °C) to 106 °F (41 °C) once or twice a day. It falls to normal between spikes.
  • The rash is spotty, flat, and sometimes faint red or pink. It may occur with the fever. It may be on the torso, face, palms, soles of the feet, and armpits. The rash often comes and goes. It may appear late in the day or in the early morning. It may also be brought on by warm baths or by rubbing or scratching the skin.

Other conditions with symptoms similar to JIA include growing pains, overuse, injury, bone infection, and certain inflammatory diseases. Many conditions can cause painful, stiff joints in children. Most often, occasional joint pain in children is related to an injury or aggravating factors, such as repetitive overuse in sports activities. JIA is a fairly uncommon cause of these symptoms.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: January 30, 2014
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
    1
    Next Article:

    Today on WebMD

    rubbing hands
    Avoid these 6 common mistakes.
    woman roasting vegetables in oven
    Four that fight inflammation.
     
    mature woman threading needle
    How much do you know about these RA myths and facts?
    Patients who take the product would get no
    This may lead to worsening symptoms.
     
    Lucille Ball
    Slideshow
    Hand bones X-ray
    Article
     
    prescription pills
    Article
    Woman massaging her neck
    Quiz
     
    woman roasting vegetables in oven
    Slideshow
    Woman rubbing shoulder
    Slideshow
     
    Working out with light weights
    Video
    arthritis
    Article