History, Epidemiology and Clinical Evaluation of Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic, autoimmune, inflammatory disease of the joints that affects subjects of all ages, with a predilection for women of postmenopausal age. Although the etiology of RA is still unknown, its pathogenesis is the result of multiple factors acting against the background of genetic predisposition. Inflammation is probably triggered by nonspecific and as yet unknown infectious agents. The course of RA is usually chronic with alternating periods of exacerbation and abatement. RA is not necessarily confined to the joints but can cause extraarticular manifestations that are frequently severe and sometimes life-threatening.
KeywordsRheumatoid Arthritis Rheumatoid Arthritis Patient Bronchiolitis Obliterans Extra Articular Manifestation American Rheumatism Association
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