Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic autoimmune inflammatory disease mainly affecting the joints of the body. This condition also affects the skin, blood vessels, lungs, heart, and other body systems. Here the immune system attacks healthy cells and tissues of the body, damaging them, leading to organ failure or potential death if not taken care of properly in time. The main difference between osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis is that the former causes wear and tear, while the latter affects the lining of joints. In this article, we will focus on the topic of rheumatology arthritis, read on to know more about it.
Rheumatology Arthritis Symptoms
The major symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis are tender, warm, and swollen joints, fatigue, loss of appetite, and fever. Also, there is joint stiffness after inactivity, and in the morning. Apart from these common symptoms, in 40 percent of the people suffering from this condition, it also affects skin, kidneys, salivary glands, bone marrow, blood vessels, heart, lungs, kidney, eyes, and nerves.
In the beginning, it affects smaller joints like that of the fingers and toes, then gradually spreads to bigger joints of the elbows, hips, etc. Also, the severity of the symptoms may vary and might be recurring in nature. But bear in mind there is no permanent cure, and the focus of most treatments is to slow down its progress.
Causes For Arthritis And Rheumatology
Rheumatology is a condition where the immune system attacks the synovium, i.e. membrane lining that surrounds the joints. The inflamed synovium damages cartilage that acts as a cushion between bones in the joints. This leads to the weakening and stretching of ligaments that hold the joint together. This causes the joint to lose its shape and alignment. The exact cause of this autoimmune disorder is unknown, but genetic disposition can make some people more susceptible to rheumatoid arthritis.
Complications Due To Rheumatology Arthritis
Osteoporosis: Some of the medications used for treating rheumatoid arthritis coupled with the symptoms of the disease can increase the risk of osteoporosis.
Rheumatoid Nodules: These are bumps of firm tissues usually formed at pressure points like the elbows. But they can form anywhere including the lungs creating complications.
Infections: As mentioned earlier, rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder, and some of the medications used in its treatments suppress the hyperactivity of the immune system. This can make you more susceptible to infections and other diseases.
Heart Diseases: Rheumatoid arthritis hardens and blocks arthritis, as well as inflames the sac that encloses the heart.
Lung Diseases: Rheumatoid arthritis increases the risk of scarring of lung tissue due to inflammation.
We hope that the aforementioned details clarified your doubts, and gave you a better understating of rheumatology arthritis.