What are the Early Signs and Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis?


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According to Arthritis Foundation, Rheumatoid Arthritis is an autoimmune disease in which our immune system mistakenly attacks our body joints. In this article, we will see How Rheumatoid Arthritis develops and what are the symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis and its early warning signs.

How does RA Develop?

In Rheumatoid Arthritis our body’s immune system attacks our joints and as a result, the tissues which surround the joints thickens and inflammation is created. The pain and swelling are produced around the joint.

In the long run, both joint bones can fuse with each other and it can result in movable joints. In moderate cases, the movement of the joint is very limited due to this disease and joints become very painful. Wikipedia explained it very well.

Who Develops RA?

It includes genetic factors like many other diseases. If any of the family members is a victim of RA then its most likely to transmit in children. RA most commonly begins within the age of 30 and 60 and in men, it occurs later in life. Some resources say that women are most likely to develop Rheumatoid Arthritis then males.

People with RA can have more risk of obesity or heart diseases, diabetes, and high blood pressure. Depression can also develop along with Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Now let’s take a look at symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis and its warning signs. And when you should take action.

1. Fatigue

Fatigue is a result of joint inflammation, poor sleep or reaction to medications in rheumatoid arthritis. You will feel very tired and less energy in the body.

It can adversely affect your relationships, work routine, mental capability and more. You may develop fatigue in the day or morning.

2. Joint Pain

When joints develop inflammation then it leads to joint pain. This is because in RA joint tissues are damaged.

In RA when WBCs attack our joint cells and bones, synovium gets damaged and swelling appears inside of tissue. This then stretches the tissue and capsule which surrounds the joint, this causes joint pain. In RA joint pain affect both sides of the body.

3. Morning Stiffness

Stiffness which remains for some minutes in the morning or after napping. This may last for 30 minutes or longer. This is the early symptom of arthritis and can worsen over time.

This can also be caused after you keep sitting for a long time or joints stay at rest. If you feel stiffness and hard to move your joints. Then it is a symptom of RA.

4. Joint Stiffness

Joint stiffness is the main symptom of RA. This can occur at any time of the day, while you are active or not. Joints become hard to move.

5. Swelling

Swelling occurs in your joints and you also feel pain due to this swelling. This makes appear your joints bigger than normal and swelling is also associated with joint warmth.

6. Joint Tenderness

In simple words, joints are painful when touched. This is because the swelling and RA irritated the nerves in the joint capsule. You can become very uncomfortable with it.

7. Joint Redness

Due to the inflammation occurs in the joints, joints become red. This is because due to swelling capillaries are widened by adjacent inflammation. You can see it normally on the affected joints.

8. Joint Deformity

When you develop chronic rheumatoid arthritis, your joints start to deform themselves. This is because of swelling and in chronic conditions bones fuse together in joints and they can grow abnormally and uncontrolled.

9. Limited motion

It limits the motion of the affected joint and you will feel difficulty and pain when you try to move your affected joint at a normal angle.

You will unable to move or bend your joints. Your range of motion will be affected due to pain and stiffness. A gentle exercise and yoga can help to get relief.

10. Both Sides of Body is Affected

In the case of rheumatoid arthritis joints of both sides of the body are equally affected.

11. Other Symptoms of RA

  • Eyes are also affected.
  • More than one joints are affected.
  • Weight loss
  • Loss of Appetite
  • Weakness
  • Fever

What to do If RA is Diagnosed – Treatment?

As soon as you observe any symptoms of RA, you must take proper tests and consult your physician. They might recommend you some blood tests, imaging scans or X-Rays scans. In addition, you can find some very useful diagnosis and treatment tips at Mayoclinic and Arthritis.org.

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