The inflammatory joint disease rheumatoid arthritis is responsible for significant pain and disability, but there are ways to improve your condition. At Arthritis Northwest PLLC in Spokane, Washington, the experienced rheumatologists offer effective therapies like biologics and disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs) to ease your pain. For expert diagnosis and treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, call Arthritis Northwest PLLC today and schedule a consultation or visit us online.
Rheumatoid arthritis is one of many types of autoimmune disorders, which develop when the immune system isn’t working properly.
In the case of rheumatoid arthritis, the immune system attacks and destroys cells in your joints in the same way it would defend your body from an invading bacterium or virus.
The cells under attack are in the synovium. This tissue lines the inner surfaces of your joints and produces lubricating fluid to keep the joints moving freely. The synovium also helps support the health of cartilage and bones in your joints.
The immune system attack on the synovium triggers inflammation, resulting in joint swelling and pain. The continual inflammation eventually destroys cartilage and the bone beneath, causing permanent joint damage and deformity.
Symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis include:
Complications of rheumatoid arthritis include Sjögren's syndrome and rheumatoid nodules (small lumps under the skin).
Initially, rheumatoid arthritis tends to affect small joints like those in your fingers, feet, and wrists. As the condition progresses, it starts to cause problems with larger joints such as your knees, hips, shoulders, ankles, and elbows.
When you have rheumatoid arthritis, the sooner you get a diagnosis and begin your treatment program, the better your quality of life is likely to be.
Your provider at Arthritis Northwest PLLC designs a personalized treatment plan for you that takes into account the severity of your rheumatoid arthritis and your individual needs. Treatments may include:
Physical therapy is essential to prevent your joints from seizing up and keep the supporting muscles strong.
Steroid injections can reduce joint inflammation and relieve pain.
Disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs) help alleviate rheumatoid arthritis symptoms and slow down or potentially prevent further joint damage.
Biologics are drugs that use a targeted approach to adjust your faulty immune system response. They can decrease the severity of your symptoms and slow down joint deterioration.
Arthritis Northwest PLLC has a comfortable infusion suite on-site for the delivery of drugs like DMARDs and biologics.
For timely diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis and access to the latest treatments, call Arthritis Northwest PLLC today to book an appointment or visit us online.