Disease Risks with RA

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What other diseases am I at risk for if I have RA?

John H. Klippel, MD
One of them would be a disease which causes dryness in the, in the eyes, the mouth. It goes by this name called Sjogren's syndrome. There are an amazing number of people with Rheumatoid Arthritis who you know have dry eyes they are wiping their eyes and they don't recognize that that's actually part of their Rheumatoid Arthritis. Um, one of the diseases that's very important to talk about is people with Rheumatoid Arthritis are at risk for heart disease, cardiovascular disease. And if there's one thing that we can do to really improve the care, is to get more and more people to recognize this. There is a mortality, or death associated with Rheumatoid Arthritis. On average, people die 10 years younger than uh what they would have expected to die and the most common cause of death is from heart disease. So what that means is attention to blood pressure, attention to cholesterol and other lipids, paying attention to chest pain– all those things become an important part of the chronic management of Rheumatoid Arthritis.