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Rheumatoid Arthritis: Neck Symptoms - Topic Overview

When rheumatoid arthritis affects the neck joints, particularly those located at the top of the spine, complications can occur.

  • Bones and joints affected by rheumatoid arthritis may dislocate and press on the spinal cord or on the nerve roots.
  • Pressure can cause numbness, pain, tingling, weakness, loss of bowel or bladder control, and unusual head and neck sensations.
  • Pressure may also obstruct blood flow through the blood vessels in the spinal cord.

Neck pain along with weakness, numbness, or tingling of hands, feet, legs, or arms is the most common symptom of possible pressure on the spinal cord or on the nerve roots. Although compression of the spinal cord is fairly rare, it can lead to paralysis if it is not treated.

Recommended Related to Rheumatoid Arthritis

What Are Rheumatoid Nodules?

Rheumatoid nodules are firm lumps under the skin. They grow close to joints affected by rheumatoid arthritis. These bumps can be as large as a walnut or as small as a pea. Not everyone with RA gets them. Some nodules can move. Others stay firmly in place, because they're connected to tendons or other bands of tissue called fascia under the skin. They often show up in: Hands Fingers Knuckles Elbows They can form on the vocal cords, too, which causes hoarseness. You can also...

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    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: September 09, 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.
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