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Rheumatoid arthritis in the knees severely affects a person’s movement!

 In rheumatoid arthritis (RA), the immune system mistakenly attacks healthy tissues. RA in the knees severely affects a person’s movement. People’s joints in hands, knees, wrists are affected, and this causes the lining of the joints to become damaged and inflamed. RA affects both sides of the body equally. In the US, there are around 1.5 million people with RA. People find difficulty in carrying out daily activities, and when it affects their knees, people find difficulty in climbing stairs, walking, and general mobility challenging. RA can cause progressive inflammation if people do not seek treatment, resulting in damage to the joints. It can lead to permanent disability. 

The knees are the most significant and strongest joint in the body. It consists of the upper end of the shinbone, the lower end of the thighbone, the kneecap. As the knee bends and straightens, the protective cartilage cushions the bone, and the ends of the bones are covered. A thin capsule of tissue called synovial membrane lines the joint.This membrane release lubricating fluid that protects the ligaments and cartilage and reduces friction. 

If the knees are affected by RA, then the immune system mistakenly targets the synovial membrane. This reaction causes painful swelling and inflammation due to cell proliferation or growth. The swollen synovial membrane then limits movement. RA commonly affects the knees on both sides equally. Swelling damaged ligaments and cartilage as the condition progresses, which can no longer cushion against friction. This causes the cartilage to wear away, and bones get damaged. People can experience extensive damage from RA and leaving them with life-changing symptoms and disabling. 

Suppose a person has RA in their knees. In that case, they may have symptoms such as stiff, swollen joints, pain, and swelling, pain that increases with vigorous physical activity, sudden sticking or locking during movement, creaking, clicking, snapping, or grinding sounds, a feeling of weakness or buckling of the knees, fatigue, low-grade fever, inflamed, dry eyes and dryness of the mouth, low blood cell count. RA can change a person’s life due to reduced mobility and physical weakness. Having painful and stiff knees can make it difficult to get up from bed, dress, bathe. 

Regular daily activities can become extremely difficult as the condition progresses and causes further damage. Some people need support in every aspect of their lives. The unpredictability of symptoms makes activities challenging to plan. People may feel that they have lost control of their life. RA can change relationships. As people lose mobility and feel increasingly tired, they may not participate in social activity. It can impact people’s employment because they may no longer function the same way they used to do. 

Doctors use a combination of medical history, physical examinations, and laboratory tests to diagnose RA in the knees. A doctor will ask questions about joint symptoms and look for signs of tenderness, swelling, heat, or limited movements in the knees and joints, a low-grade fever, and bumps under the skin. The blood test can identify inflammatory markers. Doctors can use MRI scans, ultrasound scans, X-rays to find out joint and bone erosion. 

 

 

 

 

About the author

Nick Brown

Nick is a qualified writer and a blogger, who loves to dabble with and write about technology. While focusing on and writing on tech topics, his varied skills and experience enable him to write on any topic related to tech which may interest him. [email protected]

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