13:39 PM

10 Rheumatoid Arthritis Complications You Need to Know About

CreakyJoints reports rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a systemic condition, which means it can affect different parts of the body and cause additional health problems, including but not limited to pulmonary and sleep issues.

Dee Dee Wu, MD, rheumatologist at HSS, provided a comment to CreakyJoints.org about the importance of effective RA treatment to prevent associated comorbidities, stating, “Treating the rheumatoid arthritis effectively helps minimize long-term complications.”

Signs of potential pulmonary issues in RA include a persistent cough and shortness of breath. “If there are any red flags, I would do a screening chest X-ray and possible CAT scan of the chest. If either tests are abnormal, I’d refer you to a pulmonologist for further evaluation. Treatment depends on the severity of the complication,” said Dr. Wu.

Additionally, RA medications might be the contributing factor to a patient's difficulty sleeping, and their doctor may need to change the treatment they are on or when they take them. Dr. Wu exampled, “You could take prednisone only in the morning, rather than twice a day."

Read the full article at CreakyJoints.org.