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Am A Guide To Rheumatoid Autoimmune Disease

A Guide to Rheumatoid Autoimmune Disease

Rheumatoid autoimmune diseases are painful conditions that are characterized inflammation, swelling, and pain in the joints or muscles caused by an autoimmune response by the body. A number of disorders fall into the category of rheumatoid autoimmune disease.

Ankylosing Spondylitis

Ankylosing spondylitis is an inflammatory disease that can, in severe cases, cause some of the vertebrae in your spine to fuse together. The disease causes grave, chronic pain and discomfort in the spine and joints. Chief symptoms include:

  • pain and stiffness in the lower back and buttocks
  • mild fever
  • loss of appetite
  • general discomfort

Read more about ankylosing spondylitis:
The Myth That Women Don’t Get Ankylosing Spondylitis
Pregnancy and Ankylosing Spondylitis

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disorder that typically affects the small joints in your hands and feet on both sides of your body. In addition to causing joint problems, rheumatoid arthritis can also affect your whole body with fevers and fatigue.  Common joint symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis include:

  • Stiffness
  • Swelling
  • Pain
  • Redness and warmth

Read more about rheumatoid arthritis:
The Evolution of a Solution: Life with Rheumatoid Arthritis
The Stairs
Rheumatoid Arthritis – the Latest Research/Clinical Trials for Traditional + Alternative Therapies
Pregnancy and Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid Arthritis, Breastfeeding Moms and Cortisone

Psoriatic Arthritis

Psoriatic arthritis is a form of inflammatory arthritis that can affect some of the millions of Americans who have the skin disorder psoriasis. The primary symptoms of psoriatic arthritis:

  • Swollen, tender and painful joints most often in the fingers and toes, in an irregular pattern that may be different on opposite sides of the body
  • Pitted, discolored fingernails and toenails that can separate from the nail bed

References and Further Reading

WebMD: An Overview of Rheumatic Diseases
InnumoConcepts: Systemic Rheumatic Disease
Discovery Medicine: Challenges in the Diagnosis of Chronic Immune-mediated Rheumatic Diseases
University College London: Autoimmune Rheumatic Disorders
Mayo Clinic: Rheumatoid Arthritis
WebMD: Rheumatoid Arthritis Overview
Spondylisits Association of America
WebMD: Psoriatic Arthritis: The Basics

A note to readers: Help us keep this article complete and up-to-date.  If you see a condition that is missing or misrepresented, please comment on the article, and we will correct/update right away.  Thanks!


About the Author
Gretchen Heber is an autoimmune mom and entrepreneur with more than 15 years of experience in online media. She has also worked with several daily newspapers across the United States, serving as a graphic designer, writer and editor.

This blog post was originally published by, written by Gretchen Heber, and first published on May 17, 2013.

This post contains the opinions of the author. Autoimmune Association is not a medical practice and does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. It is your responsibility to seek diagnosis, treatment, and advice from qualified providers based on your condition and particular circumstances. Autoimmune Association does not endorse nor recommend any products, practices, treatment methods, tests, physicians, service providers, procedures, clinical trials, opinions or information available on this website. Your use of the website is subject to our Privacy Policy.

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