Women are not the only persons in danger of developing rheumatoid arthritis: men are more commonly being diagnosed with the condition, too.
This painful condition affects the joints in the body, causing flare-ups which can be debilitating.
Scientists are unsure of the exact cause of rheumatoid arthritis, however there are many causes believed to impact the condition.
Men have a tendency to develop rheumatoid arthritis later than women, and they’re three times less likely than women to develop the condition.
There is evidence that suggests the women get rheumatoid arthritis more than men due to hormonal differences between the sexes.
The reason for this belief is because it is known that other conditions, such as fibromyalgia and lupus are also more common in women due to hormonal changes.
A Look at RA
Rheumatoid arthritis is a condition that attacks the body’s immune system. It attacks the lining of the joints as an autoimmune disorder.
The condition causes a number of painful symptoms which usually subside and return again.
Among the symptoms of RA: swelling, stiffness in the joints, inflammation and weakness and fatigue.
The disease can be very debilitating for some sufferers and can cause a change in lifestyle, including the level and the amount of work that one can perform.
Men and RA
Luckily for men, when they do experience the condition it is less severe than what it would be felt in a woman.
Most often men report that symptoms are very temporary, only causing an occasional flare-up.
Even still there is no cure for Rheumatoid arthritis, however, John Hopkins University studies report that the condition is more likely to go into remission for men, with better chances of success when the condition is caught at its earliest stages.
See a Doctor
It is vital that a doctor be saw on a regular basis. Men are less likely than women to see a doctor, therefore they are being diagnosed later. Sometimes men will go several years even with symptom present before they finally see the doctor.
This is the worst thing that can be done. Joint damage can occur with the condition, and the extent of this occurs within two years of the onset of the disease.
There are a number of tests that a doctor can perform to determine if RA is present.
This includes a test that probes the joints to determine their tenderness; the patient tells the doctor the amount of pain felt in each area.
Men must understand that admitting to pain is not a sign of weakness, and avoiding the manly macho attitude is a must when it comes to your health and protecting yourself.
Blood tests are another test that the doctor can perform to determine if Rheumatoid Arthritis is present.
These blood tests look for antibodies that have been associated with RA and check the C-reactive protein levels in the body.
This is a good test to perform because it tells the truth about the condition even if a man is reluctant to admitting that he is in pain.
Treatment for Rheumatoid Arthritis
Most often the doctor will prescribe men a medication to help with their condition. There are several types of medications that can be given to aid in the treatment of the condition.
Most commonly it is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug or another class of drugs known as Disease-Modifying Antirheumatic drugs.
Each of these drugs work to slow down the RA progression and reduce the inflammation of the joints.
In addition to medications it is advisable that men who are suffering with RA maintain physical activity levels and perhaps even increase them if they are not getting enough activity each day.
When a man is active the symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis are less painful and less likely to cause a flare up.
There are also a number of other at-home treatments and remedies that may be able to ease RA.
The doctor will help you determine what you can do in addition to medication and exercise to help you beat the condition as much as possible to do so.
The Bottom Line
While men are less likely to develop Rheumatoid Arthritis than women, it still is nonetheless important to see the doctor regularly and be aware of any potential signs that the condition is present.
The condition can and will affect a man. And then get the treatment that you need. with treatment RA is less severe and will not disrupt the life as much as it would otherwise.
There are some medications, specifically antibiotics, that cause these same symptoms. Levaquin is a big offender, as is Cipro. So if you’re having rheumatoid arthritis symptoms, check and see if you’ve taken those antibiotics in the recent past.