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Arthritis Symptoms: Signs You Might Have It

Medically Reviewed by Melinda Ratini, DO, MS on July 21, 2021

Symptoms of Osteoarthritis

Symptoms of osteoarthritis may include:

  • Joint pain
  • Stiffness when you wake up or after you’ve been sitting for a while
  • Tenderness -- the area is sore when you touch it
  • Lack of movement -- the joint won’t complete its full range of motion
  • Grating -- you might feel things rubbing together inside the joint
  • Bone spurs -- lumps of bone form around the joint

Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis

Symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis may include:

  • Joint pain, swelling and tenderness for 6 weeks or longer
  • Morning stiffness for at least 30 minutes
  • More than one joint affected, especially small joints in your hands, wrists, and feet
  • The same joints on both sides of the body are affected

Symptoms of Infectious Arthritis

Symptoms of infectious arthritis may include:

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Joint inflammation
  • Tenderness
  • Sharp pain that is related to an injury or infection elsewhere in your body.

Call Your Doctor About Arthritis If:

 

  • The pain and stiffness come on quickly for no apparent reason.
  • The pain comes with a fever.
  • The pain develops quickly and is related to redness and extreme tenderness of the joint.
  • You notice pain and stiffness in your arms, legs, or back after sitting for short periods or after a night's sleep.
  • You have swollen or painful joints for more than 2 weeks.
  • You have limited motion in joints for more than 2 weeks.
WebMD Medical Reference

Sources

SOURCES:

American College of Rheumatology. 

DePuy Orthopaedics. 

National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. 

Arthritis Foundation. 

Markkula Center for Applied Ethics, Santa Clara University. 

Arthritis-forum.net. 

National Institutes of Health. 

The Center for Current Research. 

National Internet Health. 

Alternative Medicine Foundation.

Mayo Clinic: “Osteoarthritis.”

Arthritis Foundation: “Rheumatoid Arthritis Symptoms.”

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