Rheumatoid Arthritis News

Rheumatoid arthritis is just one of many types of arthritis, a group of conditions that impact the bones, cartilage and other elements of joints. Women are three times more likely than men to have rheumatoid arthritis.

Unlike the more common osteoarthritis, which seems to be caused by age-related concerns, obesity and general wear and tear, rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease. This means that a problem with the body’s immune system causes it to inadvertently attack itself. With rheumatoid arthritis, the immune system is attacking the joints.

Causes of Rheumatoid Arthritis

Though the cause of rheumatoid arthritis isn’t exactly clear, researchers do have some theories as to why some people are more likely to have it than others. There seem to be both genetic and environmental factors at play in rheumatoid arthritis. In addition, smoking may increase risk or increase the intensity of the disease. In some cases, it may in part be due to the body’s response to another illness or to other stresses.

Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis

Similar to other forms of arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis causes joint pain and swelling. With rheumatoid arthritis, however, the intensity of the pain seems to come and go in episodes called “flares.” Over time, the disease can worsen and lead to greater pain and even joint deformities and disabilities as the bones gradually deteriorate as a result of the condition.

Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis

Though there's currently no cure for rheumatoid arthritis, it can be managed through medication and therapies. Corticosteroids and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can help manage the pain. Also, drugs called disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs) and biologic agents have become increasingly effective at directly treating rheumatoid arthritis and sometimes putting it into remission. Regular exercise also seems to be highly effective in keeping the body mobile and fighting the effects of the disease.

SOURCES: Arthritis Foundation; American College of Rheumatology.

Date Posted
Article Title
Certain Jobs Linked to Raised Risk of Rheumatoid Arthritis

Risk was doubled among men who did electrical work, and tripled among bricklayers, study finds

Fish Eaters Report Less Rheumatoid Arthritis Pain

Study suggests most fish may play role in controlling symptoms

Early Treatment Equals Better Results for Rheumatoid Arthritis

Study found less disability, lower risk of early death

Obesity May Make Rheumatoid Arthritis Tough to Spot, Track

Inflammation from excess weight could lead doctors to think disease is worse in women than it is, study finds

1 in 4 U.S. Adults Disabled by Arthritis: CDC

Agency recommends exercise, not opioids, to control pain, stiffness

Rheumatoid Arthritis Drug May Not Ease Chronic Fatigue Syndrome After All

With disappointing study results, there's still no cure for the mysterious disorder

Immune Disorders Such as MS, Psoriasis May Be Tied to Dementia Risk

Study found 20 percent higher odds for memory-robbing condition, but didn't prove cause and effect

Gum Disease and Rheumatoid Arthritis

A bacterium found in the mouth may play a major role in Rheumatoid Arthritis, new study finds

Could a Germ Link Gum Disease, Rheumatoid Arthritis?

Study may offer new insight into the cause of the joint disorder

Moms' Rheumatoid Arthritis May Be Linked to Epilepsy Risk in Kids

Researcher stressed that most children born to women with the autoimmune condition not at risk for seizures

Having Rheumatoid Arthritis May Increase Heart Risk

Treating inflammation linked to the joint disease might help lower the risk, researcher says

Celebrex May Not Pose Bigger Heart Risk Than Similar Drugs: Study

Researchers found more complications, such as bleeding, for the pain relievers ibuprofen and naproxen

Researchers Pinpoint More Genes Linked to Vitiligo

Genetic clues to this autoimmune disease could lead to breakthroughs for related disorders, researchers say

New Treatments Helping Kids With Juvenile Arthritis

Several biologics have been approved by the FDA for use with certain forms of the disease

Nerve Zap Eased Rheumatoid Arthritis in Small Study

Treatment worked some for patients who weren't responding to drugs

Long Work Hours May Hurt Your Health

At the job more than 60 hours a week had most damaging effects on women's well-being, study finds

Inflectra Approved as 'Biosimilar' to Remicade

For adults with Crohn's, rheumatoid arthritis or psoriasis

Study: Smoking Hikes Chances of Early Death for Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients

But risk declines after quitting, researchers find

Experimental Drug for Rheumatoid Arthritis Shows Promise

Baricitinib helped patients who failed other treatments, researchers find

Heart Disease Deaths Drop for Those With Rheumatoid Arthritis: Study

These patients are twice as likely as the average person to develop heart disease

Studies Explore Link Between Diet, Rheumatoid Arthritis

Healthy eating might help prevent debilitating joint disorder, researchers say

Rheumatoid Arthritis May Shorten Life Span: Study

Heart, respiratory problems were main contributors to early death, researchers found

Could Oral Contraceptives Help Ease Rheumatoid Arthritis?

Only association was seen, and older women shouldn't take the pill to treat symptoms, experts say

Knee Replacement May Ease Pain for Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients

Procedure can 'turn back time' on the joints, at least temporarily, study finds

Could Antibiotics Raise a Child's Risk for Juvenile Arthritis?

Odds are low, but study points to another downside of overuse

Study Shows Arthritis' Toll on Work, Social Life

Joint disease plus other chronic health conditions may keep up to one-third affected out of workplace

Gene Discoveries Could Help Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatment

New research reveals clues to disease severity, potential outcomes

Some Arthritis Meds Cost Seniors Thousands Annually

Out-of-pocket expenses keep many Medicare patients from taking needed drugs, study suggests

'Ground Zero' Workers at Risk of Autoimmune Diseases: Study

Prolonged exposure linked to rheumatoid arthritis, lupus

Tropical Virus Symptoms Can Mimic Rheumatoid Arthritis: Study

Similarities may make diagnosis of chikungunya more difficult, researchers say

Certain Infections Linked to Reduced Risk of Rheumatoid Arthritis

Gut, urinary tract and genital conditions may offer some protection, study suggests

Weight Could Influence Rheumatoid Arthritis Relief

Study finds overweight people are less likely to have remission

Rheumatoid Arthritis in Moms-to-Be Linked to Premature Births

Low birth weight also more likely, researchers found

Lower Doses of Rheumatoid Arthritis Drugs May Work for Some

Study found many patients with early stage disease stayed in remission with less medication

Salty Foods May Double Smokers' Risk of Rheumatoid Arthritis

About half of raised risk from tobacco tied to interaction with too much sodium, study finds

Many Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients May Skip Meds: Study

This could lead to worsening of symptoms, researchers say

Certain Symptoms Can Delay Lupus Diagnosis, Researchers Report

Headache, seizures often lead doctors down the wrong path