those without rheumatoid arthritis. In most age groups, rheumatoid arthritis patients had a 15% or higher rate of functional disability than those without the disease.
The findings show the importance of early treatment for rheumatoid arthritis patients, according to Myasoedova.
“Alerting your health care provider to difficulties in daily living can assure that patients receive the help they need,” she said.
About 1.5 million Americans have been diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, an autoimmune disease that most often affects the joints but can also impact other parts of the body. Rheumatoid arthritis is one of the most common chronic conditions associated with functional disability in the United States and has a significant impact on well-being and quality of life.
Symptoms can include joint pain or swelling, but 40% of patients have symptoms that don’t involve the joints, such as fatigue, fever, and loss of appetite.
The study was published in June in the journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings.
The American Academy of Family Physicians has more on rheumatoid arthritis.