10 Things I Wish Everyone Knew About Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)

1. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune arthritis disease.

Autoimmune diseases occur due to a faulty immune system, causing them to act against a persons’ own internal defense system. The body then produces antibodies that attack healthy cells and tissues, causing pain and inflammation in the joints, connective and soft tissues, and organs. The damage can lead to disability and even contribute to death. Scientists believe it happens as a result of a perfect storm: genetic predisposition, environment, and hormones.

2. Life expectancy is shortened.

Not only must patients with autoimmune arthritis live with a potentially crippling disease, but they must come to terms with the fact they might die earlier than expected. Little wonder that patients often suffer from depression and anxiety disorders.
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