Joint symptoms may be a sign of rheumatoid arthritis (RA), a serious condition that can cause permanent joint damage if treatment is delayed. Getting treatment quickly can help preserve joint function and prevent other serious health problems. Know what to watch for so you can take action.
Watch for these potential signs and symptoms of RA:
If you have these symptoms, make an appointment with your doctor as soon as possible.
Your doctor will diagnose RA from your symptoms, a physical examination and various tests.
It can be difficult, and often takes time, to diagnose RA as the symptoms can be similar to other types of arthritis. If your doctor suspects you have RA you should be referred to a rheumatologist, a doctor who specialises in treating rheumatoid arthritis.
A rheumatologist can diagnose RA and make sure you get the right treatment. If you have RA and have not seen a rheumatologist, ask your GP about a referral.