Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis

  • Jerry C. Jacobs
Part of the Comprehensive Manuals in Pediatrics book series (CM PEDIATRICS)


Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis (JRA) has been the diagnostic label applied to any child whose arthritis is of unknown origin, begins under age 16, and persists for a minimum of 6 weeks1 Arthritis is defined as swelling or both pain and limitation of motion in at least one joint. “Unknown origin” means that the physician has considered and excluded all other diseases, both common and unusual, that may cause or be associated with arthritis (Table 3.1). These diagnostic criteria, adopted by a panel of experts (the JRA Criteria Subcommittee of the American Rheumatism Association) were extraordinarily successful in helping physicians distinguish arthritic disorders from other disorders in childhood. After 5 years, only 3% of children diagnosed as JRA by these criteria turned out to have some other disease. Interest in childhood arthritis was stimulated by publication of these criteria, and they helped to bring about the end of an era in which children with arthritis were frequently misdiagnosed and subjected to long hospitalizations, unnecessary surgery, harmful immobilization, and inadequate or inappropriate drug therapy.


Familial Mediterranean Fever Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis Rheumatoid Nodule Analgesic Nephropathy Salicylate Level 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jerry C. Jacobs
    • 1
  1. 1.Section of Pediatric Rheumatology Department of Pediatrics College of Physicians and SurgeonsColumbia UniversityNew YorkUSA

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