Rheumatoid arthritis is a form of arthritis that affects the lining of the joints, causing inflammation. Both sides of the body are affected equally. It is a systemic disease and, as well as affecting the joints, it can also affect other areas and organs in the body. Symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis include fatigue, a lack of appetite, low grade fever, muscle and joint aches, stiffness, and red, swollen, painful and tender joints. There is no known cure but early intervention is important. Treatment options include medication, rest, joint strengthening exercises, joint protection, surgery, physical therapy, acupuncture, nutritional therapy, stress management techniques, homoeopathy, and massage.
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