Many people experience a sudden pain in their knee or hand. This could be a sign that you have rheumatoid arthritis.
Rheumatoid arthritis is a disease that causes chronic inflammation in the joints. It is an autoimmune disease where the immune system attacks normal tissues as if they were invaders. The hands and feet are the most commonly affected areas, but it can also affect any joint lined by a membrane.
Rheumatoid arthritis starts slowly, but for some people it starts suddenly. This doesn't mean that they are more likely to have a bad outcome. In fact, many people live with rheumatoid arthritis for years without any symptoms. However, rheumatoid arthritis is a progressive disease that can cause joint damage and disability.
People with rheumatoid arthritis usually have cycles where their symptoms get worse and then get better. In terms of statistics, rheumatoid arthritis affects women more often than men. It also affects people of all races equally. Rheumatoid arthritis can start at any age, but it most often starts in the early forties.
What causes rheumatoid arthritis?
Scientists still don't know what causes rheumatoid arthritis. There are many different theories, but no one has been able to prove anything yet. Some scientists think it might be inherited, while others think that something in the environment might trigger the immune system to attack the body's own tissue.
Scientists have found that environmental factors may play a role in causing rheumatoid arthritis. In fact, researchers have found that smoking tobacco increases the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis.
The symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis vary depending on how much tissue inflammation is present. If the body tissues are inflamed, then rheumatoid arthritis is said to be active. If the tissue inflammation goes down, then rheumatoid arthritis is said to be in remission. This may happen on its own or with treatment.