Do you have a shorter life expectancy with rheumatoid arthritis?

RA and life expectancy

Does rheumatoid arthritis lower life expectancy?

Over the years, studies have shown that RA can shorten lifespan by an average of about ten years, the cause for this decrease is due to multiple factors, and there is an increasing impetus of managing other factors aside from physical disability and improvement of quality of life.

Is rheumatoid arthritis a terminal illness?

Rheumatoid arthritis is not fatal, but complications of the disease shorten life span by a few years in some individuals. Although generally rheumatoid arthritis cannot be cured, the disease gradually becomes less aggressive and symptoms may even improve.

Can I live a normal life with rheumatoid arthritis?

Many people can live a healthy, active life with RA. It is difficult to predict the exact impact that RA will have on a person’s life expectancy because the course of the disease differs significantly between people. In general, it is possible for RA to reduce life expectancy by around 10 to 15 years.

What do RA patients die from?

The autopsy was performed in 56.6%. The most common causes of death in RA patients were infectious diseases (20.5%), respiratory diseases (16%, mainly interstitial pneumonia and chronic obstructive lung diseases), and gastrointestinal diseases (14.7% chiefly perforation or bleeding of peptic ulcer).

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At what age is RA usually diagnosed?

You can get rheumatoid arthritis (RA) at any age, but it’s most likely to show up between ages 30 and 50. When it starts between ages 60 and 65, it’s called elderly-onset RA or late-onset RA. Elderly-onset RA is different from RA that starts in earlier years.

What happens when RA attacks the lungs?

The lung problems most often linked to rheumatoid arthritis include: Scarring within the lungs. Scarring related to long-term inflammation (interstitial lung disease) may cause shortness of breath, a chronic dry cough, fatigue, weakness and loss of appetite.

How quickly can rheumatoid arthritis progress?

The symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis often develop gradually over several weeks, but some cases can progress quickly over a number of days. The symptoms vary from person to person. They may come and go, or change over time. You may experience flares when your condition deteriorates and your symptoms become worse.

How do you permanently treat rheumatoid arthritis?

There is no cure for rheumatoid arthritis. But clinical studies indicate that remission of symptoms is more likely when treatment begins early with medications known as disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs).

What is end stage RA?

The end stage of RA means that most of the tissue that was formerly inflamed has been destroyed, and bone erosion has occurred. The affected joints stop functioning and patients experience pain and severe loss of mobility.

Can you be cured of rheumatoid arthritis?

Although there’s no cure for rheumatoid arthritis, early treatment and support (including medicine, lifestyle changes, supportive treatments and surgery) can reduce the risk of joint damage and limit the impact of the condition. Your treatment will usually involve care from your GP and several different specialists.

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