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Doctor insights on: If Ra Is Left Untreated Does It Shorten Your Lifespan

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If RA is left untreated does it shorten your lifespan?

If RA is left untreated does it shorten your lifespan?

Yes: Rheumatoid arthritis is a systemic disease which means that the entire body is under attack not just the joints. Due to the widespread inflammation, internal organs can be affected such as the lungs, blood vessels, heart, and other organs. The good news is that newer medicines are lessening the burden of rheumatoid inflammation. Thus, prompt diagnosis and treatment have become even more important. ...Read more

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Dr. Tracy Lovell
868 doctors shared insights

Rheumatoid Arthritis (Definition)

A chronic inflammatory disorder that affects joints and may also affect ...Read more


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Seems my RA is advancing. I am having issues with balance pain in my neckshoulders and headaches. A recrent xray shows a curve to left in my spine?

Seems my RA is advancing. I am having issues with balance pain in my neckshoulders and headaches. A recrent xray shows a curve to left in my spine?

Symptoms are interesting: in that Rheumatoid arthritis is an arthritis. Headaches and balance issues require further investigation. The scoliosis, if it was not there before should be checked for an underlying cause. There are many things going through my mind but they need MRI of head and neck and maybe thoracic spine. We should be sure it is not something other than RA before advancing your treatment. Best wishes ...Read more

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I have RA and my right arm has some deformity and am on methotrexate. Is it possible that my left arm get deformed as well?

I have RA and my right arm has some deformity and am on methotrexate. Is it possible that my left arm get deformed as well?

True Rheumatoid: Arthritis is known to cause 'symmetric' deformities, commonly in hand joints. If your case is serious and difficult enought to require mtx, you have a rheumatologist most likely. Mtx has liver toxicity, but it is not involved with your 'deformity, check out your concern with your rheumatologist! ...Read more

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Have moderate degeneration in left TMJ and severe degenerative changes in the right. My rheumatologist says not ra. What treatment is likely?

Have moderate degeneration in left TMJ and severe degenerative changes in the right. My rheumatologist says not ra. What treatment is likely?

See OFP specialist: Treatment includes a soft diet, NSAIDs for control of pain and inflammation, and a muscle relaxant in the presence of hyperactivity. Joint lavage) or arthroscopy should be considered. See Orofacial Pain specialist for diagnosis and conservative treatment. ...Read more

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Both elbows stiff, painful, left is mild, right is more severe. NOT swollen. Had blood test recently, no RA antibodies. Painful to straighten.

Both elbows stiff, painful, left is mild, right is more severe.  NOT swollen.  Had blood test recently, no  RA antibodies. Painful to straighten.

Could be a simple --: problem like Tennis Elbows. Take some pain meds, do stretching exercises, as much as you can, Use an Elbow straps, both sides and try straightening them out with gentle exercises 3-4 times a day for 5 minutes each time. If not improving with these then seeing an Orthopedist would be beneficial. Good Luck. ...Read more

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When i lay down my left arm goes locked up and it very much hurts to move it from ra. Doctor gave me a shot of pred. Helped but now hurts more.Whatnow?

When i lay down my left arm goes locked up and it very much hurts to move it from ra. Doctor gave me a shot of pred. Helped but now hurts more.Whatnow?

Pred = palliative: Corticosteroids (in pill form or injection) should only be used short term, and should never be the mainstay of your treatment. If your arm is locking up (is it your shoulder or elsewhere?), you may have a torn rotator cuff or some other problem that requires additional evaluation and treatment. You should see a rheumatologist if you haven't already. ...Read more