Tags: Arthritis | rheumatoid arthritis | life expectancy

What Is Rheumatoid Arthritis Life Expectancy?

By    |   Wednesday, 11 May 2016 06:22 PM

The life expectancy for rheumatoid arthritis (RA), a serious autoimmune disease that targets the joints causing inflammation, pain, and stiffness, depends on many factors.

While common arthritis, also called osteoarthritis, causes damage from wear and tear on the joints, rheumatoid arthritis damages the linings of the joints as well, says the Mayo Clinic. RA also, over time, cab damage many other bodily organs and tissues due to chronic inflammation.

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According to a HealthDay News report, a study showed that having rheumatoid arthritis increases the chance of premature death by as much as 40 percent. Many cases of premature death from RA are caused by eventual heart and lung complications such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) that can develop with rheumatoid arthritis. The study only showed a link between RA and premature death, however; it did not show a direct cause-and-effect relationship.

Healthline says life expectancy, or prognosis, for rheumatoid arthritis depends on your age at the time of diagnosis and other health considerations. Also, for those patients with RA who also possess an antibody called rheumatoid factor, the disease can be more severe.

According to Healthline, patients with RA are more likely to develop life-threatening conditions like heart disease. The risk of developing cancer has also been shown to increase for patients with RA, especially for lung cancers and Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Patients who have an autoimmune disease like RA also tend to be more susceptible to infections. Infection may account for as many as 36 percent of premature deaths in RA patients, according to one study.

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The life expectancy, on average, for people with rheumatoid arthritis is shortened by about 10 years, says Healthline. Patients with rheumatoid arthritis can lessen their symptoms and dramatically slow down or even reverse the progression of the disease by seeking treatment as early as possible and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Dr. Jeffrey Sparks at the rheumatoid division of Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, tells HealthDay News that recent research now clearly indicates the need for patients and their physicians to be aware of the life-threatening complications that can develop with rheumatoid arthritis.

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The life expectancy for rheumatoid arthritis (RA), a serious autoimmune disease that targets the joints causing inflammation, pain, and stiffness, depends on many factors.
rheumatoid arthritis, life expectancy
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2016-22-11
Wednesday, 11 May 2016 06:22 PM
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