Rheumatoid arthritis causes many symptoms, including joint pain and stiffness.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) causes the joints to become inflamed, which can lead to a range of symptoms, such as pain and stiffness. These symptoms can affect many areas of the body.
RA affects every person differently, but it is common for the symptoms to come and go. People with this condition tend to experience flare-ups, when their symptoms are worse, and remissions, when the disease is more manageable.
It is not clear what causes RA, but there are environmental and genetic risk factors, which include being overweight and smoking. Hormonal factors are likely to contribute too as around 75 percent of people who have RA are women.
In this article, we look more closely at the symptoms of RA in women and explain how these may vary at different stages of life.
Women tend to develop RA at a younger age than men, with symptoms typically appearing between the ages of 30 and 50.
The symptoms of RA can affect many different parts of the body. The most commonly affected areas include those below:
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