Rheumatoid Arthritis: An Overview

african american man looking at pills in his hand(BlackDoctor.org) — Arthritis is a general term that means inflammation in a joint. Joint inflammation is characterized by redness, warmth, swelling, and pain within the joint.

Rheumatoid arthritis is a type of chronic arthritis that typically occurs in joints on both sides of the body (such as hands, wrists, or knees). This symmetry helps distinguish rheumatoid arthritis from other types of arthritis.

In addition to affecting the joints, rheumatoid arthritis may occasionally affect the skin, eyes, lungs, heart, blood, or nerves.

What Are the Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis?

Symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis include:

  • Joint pain and swelling
  • Stiffness, especially in the morning or after sitting for long periods
  • Fatigue

Rheumatoid arthritis affects everyone differently. For some, joint
symptoms develop gradually over several years. In others, rheumatoid
arthritis may progress rapidly and while other people may have
rheumatoid arthritis for a limited period of time and then enter a
period of remission.