Rheumatoid Arthritis Early Symptoms

Created on November 30, 2021 at 2:31 pm by Arthritis Help

Rheumatoid Arthritis Early Symptoms

Unlike several other common diseases like malaria, tuberculosis, or influenza, rheumatoid arthritis is quite difficult to recognize at the initial stages. There are hardly any dramatic external signs like excessive rise in body temperature or rashes on the skin. Therefore, it is of extreme importance that rheumatoid arthritis is understood properly concerning the cause and symptoms before diagnosis and treatment of this disease.

Essentially, rheumatoid arthritis is a kind of auto-immune disease that is inflammatory. It is a chronic disease (being a persistent and incessant medical condition) Rheumatoid arthritis is, unfortunately, one of the leading causes of disability in the USA. There are thousands of people, of all ages (though, mainly middle-aged people) being diagnosed with this disease. Arthritis mainly affects the joints in the body. The joint is the place where two bones in the body meet. There is a layer of synovial fluid within the capsule enclosing the joint. In rheumatoid arthritis, this synovium is affected by the body’s immune system. WBC (white blood cells) of the blood plasma, which is generally involved in developing the body’s immunity, travels to the joint tissue and causes inflammation, resulting in swollen and stiff joints. That is why rheumatoid arthritis is called an auto-immune disease. Although most patients have swollen joints as an evident sign of arthritis, many have other symptoms, like anemia, neck pain, dry eyes, and mouth.

Rheumatoid arthritis develops slowly in people. About 75% of the patients are women and it typically starts in middle age. However, it can also develop in children and young adults. The most crucial symptoms include:

· Pain in the joints
· Swelling and inflammation in the joints
· Warmth around the affected areas
· Stiffness in the joints in the morning; lasting for about one hour or so.
An important point that must be kept in mind during diagnosis is that patients suffering from rheumatoid arthritis have a typical symmetry in the affected areas. This means that if the knee joint of the left leg is swollen, the same symptoms will be exhibited by the knee joint of the right leg. Hence, this symmetry is very helpful in diagnosing typical rheumatoid arthritis.

In almost one-fifth of the patients, there are small lumps or modules found on the elbows and hands. These are called ‘rheumatoid nodules’. Also, in rheumatoid arthritis, patients exhibit fatigue and stress in daily life. There is, sometimes, loss of body temperature (low fever), as well as certain signs of influenza. Loss of appetite and consequent weight loss is seen. Some patients also undergo depression during the disease. There is limited movement in the affected areas and joints.

Rheumatoid arthritis affects people differently. In certain people, it persists for a few months or a year and disappears. In others, it has periods of excessive symptoms (flares), and periods in which the symptoms are less evident (remissions). Some very rare symptoms include inflammation of the blood vessels, the lining of lungs, or the pericardium.

Thus, rheumatoid arthritis can be well treated and kept within limits, if the disease is diagnosed efficiently and flawlessly, which is only possible with proper knowledge of the symptoms


Early symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis tend to manifest with a few episodes of painful joints and occasional swelling. These conditions must not be ignored in the initial stages and you must see a doctor immediately.


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