Rheumatoid arthritis and lupus are autoimmune disorders that cause joint pain. The joint pain and a few other symptoms are common in these two conditions, but typically, they are two separate diseases that require different treatment approaches. While both these conditions are inflammatory, joints are majorly impacted in case of rheumatoid arthritis whereas it is the skin that faces the wrath in lupus. Here are some facts about these conditions that could help patients choose their treatment method.
Rheumatoid arthritis and lupus – comorbidity incidence
Comorbidity of rheumatoid arthritis and lupus is very common. This implies that people with lupus may also be diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. There is a 15% chance of an overlapping disease for lupus patients with about 1% risk of the overlapping condition being rheumatoid arthritis. There is also a genetic link between rheumatoid arthritis and lupus.
Rheumatoid arthritis and lupus – symptoms
Rheumatoid arthritis could lead to bone deformity. As mentioned above, joint pain, swelling, and inflammation are common symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis and lupus. Apart from this, people who are affected with lupus may also exhibit other symptoms such as a butterfly shaped rash on the bridge of their nose and cheeks, sensitivity to sunlight, ulcers in the mouth as well as heart or kidney related problems.
Rheumatoid arthritis and lupus – risk factors
Women are at a higher risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, and this is particularly in their post-pregnancy phase when there is a drastic change in the levels of certain hormones in the body. Having a family history of this condition or exposure to environmental pollutants can also increase the risk of rheumatoid arthritis. Risk factors with lupus are more or less the same, but when it comes to the associated complications, lupus can lead to kidney or heart problems as well as damage to the central nervous system due to the inflammation. Rheumatoid arthritis can increase the risk of various conditions as well such as osteoporosis, lung problems, cardiovascular issues, etc.
An accurate diagnosis of these conditions can help in quicker treatment and better management of them.