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January 18, 2010 at 11:25 PMComments: 0 Faves: 0

Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis

By Smarty More Blogs by This Author

Rheumatoid Arthritis is a chronic, autoimmune, inflammatory disease of the joints that can eventually be debilitating and affect several vital body organs. More than 2 million Americans have been diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis, 75% of which are women.

Because the exact cause and cure are unknown, it is vital for you to pay attention to what your body is telling you; if you display any of the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, seek the guidance of a doctor immediately. Catching and treating the disease in its early stages are essential.

Rheumatoid Arthritis Symptoms

This disease typically has a gradual onset, although sudden onset cases have been reported too.

Rheumatoid Arthritis manifests itself in the following ways:

  • Pain, swelling, and stiffness in joints.You may also feel warmth around the joints being affected.
  • Morning stiffness, pain, or discomfort in the joints that lasts for an hour or longer.
  • A pattern of symmetry in affected joints; corresponding joints on both sides of the body are affected.For example, both knees are affected.
  • Though any joint can be affected, typically small joints in the hands and feet are compromised by rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Fatigue and noticeably decreased energy
  • Minor fevers and symptoms resembling the flu
  • Appetite loss, weight loss, anemia, and depression
  • Dry eyes and dry mouth can be a complication of Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Restricted range of motion in affected joints
  • Rheumatoid Nodules are common in patients.
  • Joint deformity and instability due to deteriorating cartilage, tendons, ligaments, and bones.

Rheumatoid arthritis activity is often characterized by flares of activity and then remissions.Advanced cases of RA can be systemic, meaning bodily organs can be affected.This can lead to severe complications including death.

If this sounds like you…

Remember that no two Rheumatoid Arthritis cases are identical, and individual symptoms can vary.Diagnosing RA in its earliest stages is crucial to limiting its affect on your body.If you experience any or a combination of any of these symptoms, there are a few steps you should make:

  • If the pain is persistent, do not ignore it.
  • Do not assume that you simply injured yourself.
  • Make an appointment with a rheumatologist, a doctor who specializes in rheumatoid arthritis diagnoses and treatments.
  • Keep a log of your symptoms, and bring it to the rheumatologist appointment with you.

Though the cause and cure of Rheumatoid Arthritis are still unknown, there is no doubt that RA is a serious disease that must be addressed immediately.If you are looking for a natural, safe treatment consult your doctor.

Sources:

http://arthritis.about.com/od/rheumatoidarthritis/a/ra_symptoms.htm

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