Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid Arthritis is an inflammatory disease, where the immune system attacks its healthy cells in the body, causing painful inflammation in the affected areas. It mainly attacks the joints, mostly in the hands, wrists, and knees. Also, it affects uniformly i.e. if the joint in the right hand is effected then the same joint in the left hand is also affected.

The inflammation is carried out through one or more tissues after inflaming the marrows in the joint. This gives a long-lasting pain, unsteady nature causing malformation or deformity.

Types:

There are several types of Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) and knowing them makes the treatment easier.

The types include:

  • Seropositive rheumatoid arthritis: Seropositive is the most common type of rheumatoid arthritis where the immune system attacks the joints.
  • Seronegative rheumatoid arthritis: The seronegative RA makes the pain worse than the normal but it is highly curable.
  • Juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA): Juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) is most common in children and early teenagers. The symptoms are similar to the common type of rheumatoid arthritis, but it also brings the inflammation on the eyes.

Symptoms and diagnosis:

The symptoms may be mild to severe outbursts and it is very important to diagnose before things get bigger. The following are the major symptoms for the Rheumatoid Arthritis:

  • pain in more than one joint
  • weight loss
  • stiffness in one or more joints
  • fever
  • fatigue
  • feeling tired and weak

The treatments work best if you reach the rheumatologist much earlier. They undergo several lab tests and clinical examinations also including medical history. The rheumatologist examines ultrasound, X-ray, MRI scan results to know how severe the damage is.

Blood tests for rheumatoid arthritis: there are several blood tests the rheumatologist undergoes. They are:

  • Rheumatoid factor test
  • Antinuclear antibody test
  • Anticitrullinated protein antibody test (anti-CCP)
  • Erythrocyte sedimentation rate
  • C-reactive protein test

These blood tests will not completely solve the condition but help in examining and monitoring them to a greater extent.

Treatment:

Rheumatoid arthritis can be treated with proper medications and managing them promptly, before reaching alarming situations. The treatments for rheumatoid arthritis include several medications followed by changes in diet, exercising, and taking home remedies for better results.

Medications: since the disease brings hectic inflammation and flares in the body, there are several medications to reduce the pains and flares. They are:

  • corticosteroids
  • acetaminophen
  • nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDs
  • Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs
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