Rheumatoid arthritis symptoms can be the absolute worst of any arthritic process in advanced cases. RA is a painful, disabling and often infuriating disease, since not only is it terribly symptomatic, but it is also caused by the body turning against itself.
The reality of the condition clearly shows that this autoimmune disease is a result of the body destroying its own healthy tissues, leading to progressive and sometimes debilitating symptoms. This fact can be very difficult and heartbreaking for a diagnosed patient to accept, especially when a definitive cause for the suffering is not known.
This dialog provides a detailed look at the symptomatic expressions of rheumatoid arthritic processes.
Here are some of the many typical symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis displayed in the physical body:
Noticeable and painful swelling of the bodily joints, including the hands, feet, elbows, wrists and knees will be demonstrated. Not as noticeable, but just as painful, exists the possibility of inflammation in the spinal joints, hip joints, shoulders and other locations.
Stiffness in the joints is commonplace, including an often progressive reduction in effective range of motion.
There will usually be an appearance of rheumatoid nodules in the skin, especially on or near the affected joints.
Possible deformities of affected joints may occur and these can be debilitating, frightening and unaesthetic.
Here are some of the occasional symptoms associated with RA and how they may relate to the disease as a whole:
A variety of associated skin conditions, including types of ulcers and general skin degeneration, are found in many RA patients.
Formation of rheumatoid nodules in the lungs or internal organs may occur and will be visible by diagnostic imaging techniques. These nodules can be innocent or may be problematic.
Marked low bone density or osteoporosis are common problems near joints which have been hard hit by the disease.
Some patients suffer neurological concerns stemming from structural changes in bodily anatomy due to bone spurs and joint deformities. These issues can include pinched nerves in the spine, carpal tunnel syndrome and various manifestations of sciatica.
Possible kidney problems may exist and can lead to dire complications.
Increased chance for atherosclerosis and stroke may be present. Heart issues may also occur over the long-term progression of RA.
Anemia is very common among patients with RA.
General health symptoms can include malaise, chronic fatigue and predisposition for other possibly psychosomatic pain syndromes. Many RA patients have a history of previous psychological induced pain syndromes, such as fibromyalgia.
The symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis are truly terrible. They can make living a normal functional life virtually impossible, even for the bravest and most determined patient.
Worse yet, RA is often misdiagnosed as some other condition, and these similar conditions are just as often misdiagnosed as RA. These disorders include gout, pseudo-gout, lupus, Lyme disease, extreme osteoarthritis and ankylosing spondylitis.
Always be sure to do everything possible to achieve an acute and correct diagnosis, so that time and energy are not wasted seeking treatment for the wrong causative condition.