There are over 100 different conditions and diseases which can produce pain, stiffness, or swelling in or around a joint. Some can be very serious and even life threatening. Only your doctor can determine whether you are suffering from arthritis or some other condition with similar symptoms.
Different autoimmune conditions classified as arthritis
Boston researchers feel they may have discovered cause of rheumatoid arthritis
Oct. 30, 2007: Current research from the Mayo Clinic indicates that the life expectancy of patients with RA has not improved over the last four decades, while the overall life expectancy of the general population has and continues to improve. The results will appear in the November 2007 issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism (see above for the full news story).
Oct 28, 2007: Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR) technique is a fast and accurate profile of autoantibodies present in the blood serum of rheumatic patients can be made. This profile can give valuable information about the progress of the disease. Read the rest of the article from the online publication Medical News Today by clicking on the link above.
Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is a very common inflammatory disease generally suffered by older adults. RA is a condition triggered by the immune system, when it attacks cells within the joint and causes usually permanent damage. RA causes pain in the joints, swelling, mobility difficulties and has been proven to reduce life expectancy in both genders.
Links to further information
The above link is to a "Topix" (an online encyclopedic locator for chat groups and internet bulletin boards" page on rheumatoid arthritis with regularly updated information from many different sources on the internet, including blogs and medical journals.
This link provides regular updates, both written and audio/visual on arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Pay particular note to the discussions on Chinese herbal treatments.