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Information

Our information section is where you’ll find all our information on RA, including what symptoms to expect, how it is diagnosed and treated and tools to you to cope with your RA. 

01. Coronavirus and RA

Many people with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and their families will be concerned about how the Coronavirus (COVID-19) affects them. Here is a summary of all the important information that you need to know about Coronavirus and RA. 

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02. What is RA?

Rheumatoid arthritis is an auto-immune disease, meaning that the symptoms such as pain and inflammation are caused by the immune system attacking the joints. 

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03. RA symptoms

RA is a systemic condition, meaning that it can affect the body all over. RA occurs when the immune system attacks the lining of the joints, and this can cause pain, swelling and stiffness. However, it can also affect organs, soft tissue and cause widespread symptoms such as fatigue and flu-like symptoms.  

RA symptoms

04. RA diagnosis and possible causes

RA is diagnosed through a combination of blood tests, scans and examination of the joints. Around 50% of the cause of RA is genetic factors. The rest is made up of what’s referred to as ‘environmental’ factors, such as whether you smoke or are overweight 

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05. RA medication

RA is a very variable condition so, doctors do not start all patients in exactly the same way on the same drug regimen. The treatments given and the order they are tried on will depend on factors such as symptoms, the length of time you may have had the disease prior to diagnosis and test results. 

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06. RA healthcare

In this section, you will find articles on the people involved in treating RA, the ‘standards of care’ best practice models for clinical practice and information on the monitoring and management of RA from your healthcare team. 

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07. Living with RA

Whether you are newly diagnosed or have had RA for some time, there can still be a lot to understand about living with this disease. Hearing other people’s stories can help and you may also need specific information on topics such as work, benefits and pregnancy/parenthood. 

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08. Managing your RA

There is good evidence to show that self-management works to improve outcomes for people with conditions such as RA. Self-management takes on many forms, including changes to exercise, diet, smoker status and through the use of healthcare apps, including a number that NRAS has been involved in developing. 

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