FAQ - arthritis, rheumatoid
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can you have rheumatoid arthritis without it showing up in blood work?

I have rheumatoid arthritis like symptoms, but have a lot of blood work and nothing shows up. Is it possible it not be in the blood. It hasn't been a year yet, it started about June or July sometime around there. I am 14 if that means anything. I have also been diagnosed with fabry disease, both clinically and genetically.

In short yes.

Arthritis, including rheumatoid arthritis, is difficult to diagnose, because there is not a single test that works for everyone. There are also a number of other conditions and factors that can explain differences in blood test results, so even if you show a high C-Reactive Protein Levels, for example, this doesn't necessarily mean you have arthritis.

Since there is no single test, doctors usually preform a number of different tests, as well as looking at the symptoms of the patient. In many cases, it also isn't that they are testing for arthritis specifically, but rather that they are testing for other similar conditions to rule them out.

As far as your age goes, people of all ages can develop arthritis, but it is more common among the elderly. However, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis does occur.  (+ info)

Can rheumatoid arthritis pain follow my menstrual cycle?

I have rheumatoid arthritis and celiac disease. I've noticed the joint pain is so much worse right before my menstrual cycle. Has anyone else experienced this? I assume it's from the changing hormone levels. I have little to no pain during the rest of the month.
My doctor says there should be no relation, but it occurs every month like clockwork. He's referring me to a rheumatologist, but I still think there is a link here.

Yes,you are right,not only hormone levels,but also chemical stimulate levels.  (+ info)

What causes a Rheumatoid arthritis flare up?

I have this and I fell down and I'm a big women, and Now I am tired, sore and my hip hurts so bad. My back arms everything hurts. Can A fall cause a Rheumatoid Arthritis flare up?

the cause of rhuematoid arthritis is unknown. it is most likely osteo arthritis  (+ info)

Do certain illegal drugs cause early Rheumatoid Arthritis, or any type of bone deterioration more than others?

I know all illegal drugs are bad, but are certain ones known to cause Rheumatoid Arthritis, or any type of bone deterioration, over others? I have used a few in the past, and now at 22, I am suffering from an advanced case of bone damage in my hands. I have also been diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. Please help with real facts, Rather than just "Drugs are bad". I will be picking the best answer. Thanks!

It doesn't sound drug related. Caffeine and any number of other things will leech calcium from your bones, but it shouldn't hit you at 22. It sounds like repeated exposure to hydrofluoric acid more than anything else. I'm not aware of any drugs that are suspected to cause rheumatoid arthritis.

Realistically, the only way for any illegal drugs to damage you like this is if they make you neglect your health. But if you want more insight, it would help if you list the drugs you've taken and any other problems associated with them.  (+ info)

Does rheumatoid arthritis always cause visible swelling in the fingers?

I've heard that rheumatoid arthritis almost always starts in the fingers and causing visible swelling and redness. In terms of fingers, is it possible for a person with RA to just have stiffness and pain in the fingers with little to no swelling? Also, how often do people with Juvenile RA recover?

Usually there's some visible swelling in the joints, but it can definitely be subtle. Rheumatoid arthritis affects the joint at the knuckles, and the the middle joint in the finger, but not the joint at the tip of the finger. The typical pattern of stiffness is in the morning, taking an hour+ and getting up and moving to get rid of it

There are effective treatments at all ages. These include methotrexate, plaquenil, imuran, steroids, and injectable biologic medications. These can cause remission in some patients, and in those without complete recovery there is a definite increase in quality of life. It also slows the progression of the disease and reduces the need for future surgery. That being said, it is a bumpy course and has its ups and downs.  (+ info)

What type of people are affected by Rheumatoid Arthritis?

What people are affected by Rheumatoid arthritis. Like wht king of group? (african americans, whites, eastern) Can you please help me? This goes to an project and i searched and searched everywhere and i couldnt find the answer =( also do you knw the number of people that are affected by this? Like how many people in the world are suffering with this joint inflammation?

Quoted from the NIH website's handout on RA:

"Scientists estimate that about 1.3 million people, or about 0.6 percent of the U.S. adult population, have rheumatoid arthritis. Interestingly, some recent studies have suggested that although the number of new cases of rheumatoid arthritis for older people is increasing, the overall number of new cases may actually be going down. Rheumatoid arthritis occurs in all races and ethnic groups. Although the disease often begins in middle age and occurs with increased frequency in older people, children and young adults also develop it. Like some other forms of arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis occurs much more frequently in women than in men. About two to three times as many women as men have the disease."

The juvenile form of RA is more common in Caucasian children, however.

Hope that helps.  (+ info)

What is a REALLY awesome gift helpful to someone with rheumatoid arthritis in their knee and shoulder?

One of my family members has really bad rheumatoid arthritis (to the point where she can not get out of the bed some days) and I want to know what I can buy that would be of the most use to her.

Thank you SO MUCH for your help !

You sound like you really care about this relative. If that is so, then you don't really have to buy anything. Why not make her some personal coupons/gift certificates for your services. Things like "One hour of _________" being whatever she likes to do...a game, reading, straightening up around the house, and so on. That's much better than anything you could buy. Don't you think?  (+ info)

When should I be worried about my 1 month old possibly having Rheumatoid Arthritis?

My husbands niece just found out she has Rheumatoid Arthritis & my husbands dad has it also. My father-in-law just told me his dad had some form of Arthritis. When should I be concerned if my son has it? When can they start tests to see if has it? Thanks in advance for your answers!

I would not start testing your son right now (or in the immediate future.) arthritis can show up at any time, but it's not detectable ahead of time. Instead be aware of the symptoms of arthritis: pain, redness, swelling, and/or heat concentrated in the joints; stiffness in the morning, or long periods of inactivity; reduced range of motion in the joints; general signs of being unwell (lethargy, reduced appetite, etc.) Joint symptoms with RA are usually symmetrical. It most commonly occurs in the hands, but can occur in other joints as well. If your kids does start showing those symptoms, try to get an appt. with a rheumatologist *quickly.* If necessary, giving your GP a list of symptoms, a family history, and a request for a referral should get you to a rheumy fairly promptly.  (+ info)

Do pregnant woman who have Rheumatoid Arthritis can deliver the baby safely without dying?

I would like to know if a woman is pregnant and she has rheumatoid arthritis would the pain kill her while giving birth or after.How long a person with that illness can live?

Yes a pregnant woman with RA can safely deliver a baby. I myself did it twice. ;) People with Rheumatoid Arthritis can live just as long as "normal" healthy people just perhaps not as comfortably.

Take care and peace to you!  (+ info)

How can I help out my girlfriend with rheumatoid arthritis?

My girlfriend has been suffering with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis for most of her life and it just tears me apart to see her in so much pain. She takes medication for it but still never feels great. I feel so useless not being able to help her with the pain, I've asked her if I can help but she always says "its fine". Are there any ways I can really help her??

Thanks in advance.
By the way, we're both fifteen, if it helps at all.

There are several things that you and your girlfriend can be doing to help deal with arthritis pain.

For those with arthritis, preforming regular low impact exercises, such as walking or certain water sports, is very important. Regular safe exercise will help strengthen muscles, as well as improve flexibility and stamina. Often, arthritis pain comes from being inactive for too long, so this is also helped by exercise.

Eating healthily is also important, which means not loading up on junk foods and making an effort to get the proper vitamins and nutrients, especially Vitamin D.

Both exercise and diet can be very effective at helping to deal with arthritis pain, so as her boyfriend, you can help keep her motivated and push her to keep working.

Another thing you can do is help her to learn to live with her arthritis. Learning to live with arthritis is important, because there is no cure for the diseases and there are going to be some things that are more difficult to do.

You can start by making a list of things that your girlfriend has difficulty doing because of her arthritis or that cause her arthritis pain. Then, try to find ways of making these tasks easier.

As an example, many people have difficulty cooking, so finding more efficient ways of cooking, is often one of the biggest problems faced by those with arthritis. Of course, everyone is different, so the ways it affects her life will vary.  (+ info)

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