Although not as common as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis can severely affect joint health and lead to joint deformities and debilitation. The experienced team at Source Healthcare in Santa Monica, California specializes in the management of rheumatoid arthritis Los Angeles patients can count on. We can devise a plan that reduces your discomfort and improves your quality of life. For a consultation, call the office or book an appointment online today.
Improve Your Quality of Life, Treat Rheumatoid Arthritis
What is Rheumatoid Arthritis?
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that develops when your immune system attacks the lining of your joints, causing inflammation and pain. Over time, the inflammation may lead to erosion of your joint and joint deformity.
Researchers are not entirely certain why some people are more susceptible to rheumatoid arthritis than others, but they theorize there may be a genetic component that gets triggered by an environmental factor.
You may be at risk of developing the painful arthritic condition if it runs in your family, if you are a smoker, if you are obese, or if you have been exposed to asbestos or silica. Rheumatoid arthritis also tends to affect women more often than men.
What Are the Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis?
During the early stages of the disease, rheumatoid arthritis often affects your smaller joints and then progresses to your larger joints. Your symptoms may include swelling, pain, and tenderness.
The joint may also feel warm to the touch. In addition to joint pain, you may feel more fatigued and have a poor appetite. If you are experiencing symptoms you can schedule an examination for rheumatoid arthritis in Los Angeles at Source Healthcare.
How is Rheumatoid Arthritis Diagnosed?
There is no single blood test for the diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis, and it can be difficult to diagnose during the early stages.
In addition to a review of your symptoms and a physical exam, you may need additional diagnostic testing to rule out other causes of your symptoms such as specialized blood tests, X-rays, and/or MRIs.
What is the Treatment for
Currently, there is no cure for rheumatoid arthritis, but, with advances in medical treatment, you can go into remission. For management of your rheumatoid arthritis in Los Angeles, the team at Source Healthcare may recommend:
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
- Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs)
You may also benefit from physical and/or occupational therapy to improve joint health, function, and quality of life. If you fail to get relief from your symptoms with conservative treatments or your joint condition worsens, then you may be a candidate for surgery.
The team at Source Healthcare may also offer stem cell therapy as a treatment option for your rheumatoid arthritis. These treatments can help repair the joint damage. Stem cell therapy is a very new and promising treatment for rheumatoid arthritis.
Rheumatoid arthritis can affect your quality of life, but, with the right treatment, you can successfully manage this chronic disease. Call Source Healthcare or schedule a consultation online today to get started.
Rheumatoid Arthritis FAQs
Is Rheumatoid Arthritis an autoimmune disease?
Yes, Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disorder. The immune system mistakenly attacks healthy joint tissues, causing inflammation, pain, and potential joint damage.
What are the risk factors for developing Rheumatoid Arthritis?
Risk factors for RA include genetics, smoking, gender (more common in women), environmental factors, and health concerns, like infections or hormonal changes.
What is the difference between Rheumatoid Arthritis and Osteoarthritis?
RA is an autoimmune disease, while Osteoarthritis (OA) is a degenerative joint condition. RA affects multiple joints symmetrically and involves inflammation, while OA is wear-and-tear related and affects specific joints.
Can Rheumatoid Arthritis affect organs other than the joints?
Yes, RA can impact organs like the heart, lungs, eyes, and skin. Systemic inflammation associated with RA may lead to complications beyond joint problems.
How does diet and lifestyle affect Rheumatoid Arthritis symptoms?
Maintaining a balanced diet, managing stress, regular exercise, and avoiding smoking can help manage RA symptoms. Some anti-inflammatory foods may also provide relief, but please consult our healthcare provider for personalized advice based on your symptoms and condition.