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Rheumatoid Arthritis Specialist

Maiden Lane Medical

Multi-Specialty Group Practice located in New York, NY

Rheumatoid arthritis affects millions of people worldwide and is one of the most common types of autoimmune diseases. This chronic inflammatory disorder primarily targets the joints, causing pain, swelling, stiffness, and loss of mobility. In addition to the joints, rheumatoid arthritis can also affect other parts of the body, such as the lungs, heart, and eyes. 

At Maiden Lane Medical in Manhattan, New York, we understand the challenges that come with living with rheumatoid arthritis, and we offer comprehensive care to help manage its symptoms and improve our patient’s quality of life. Contact us today to schedule a consultation! 

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“Everyone is friendly, informative, and thoughtful. I feel that I’m in very good hands here!”
AMY

What Is Rheumatoid Arthritis?

Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic autoimmune disease that affects the joints, causing pain, swelling, and stiffness. This condition can also affect other parts of the body, including the lungs, heart, and eyes. Rheumatoid arthritis affects the lining of the joints, which leads to joint damage over time.

If left untreated, rheumatoid arthritis can cause joint damage, which can lead to a loss of mobility and disability. Rheumatoid arthritis can also increase the risk of developing interstitial lung disease, a condition that affects the tissue and space around the air sacs in the lungs, making it difficult to breathe.

What Causes Rheumatoid Arthritis?

The exact cause of Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is not fully understood, but it is thought to be an autoimmune disease, which means the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks its own healthy tissues.

In RA, the immune system attacks the synovial membrane, which is the lining of the joints. This results in inflammation and damage to the joint tissues, including the cartilage and bone. Over time, joint damage can cause deformities and disabilities.

One of the key features of RA is the presence of rheumatoid factor (RF) in the blood. RF is an antibody that is produced by the immune system and targets a type of protein called immunoglobulin G (IgG). The presence of RF can indicate a higher likelihood of developing RA, but not everyone with RA has RF, and not everyone with RF develops RA.

An older woman experiencing rheumatoid arthritis in her joints.

Other factors that may contribute to the development of RA include genetics, environmental factors, and lifestyle factors such as smoking and obesity. There is also evidence that RA may be triggered by an infection or other illness, although this is not yet fully understood.

What Are the Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis?

The symptoms of RA can vary from person to person, but some common rheumatoid arthritis symptoms include: 

As inflammatory arthritis, RA can cause damage to the joints and other tissues over time. This can lead to joint deformities, reduced range of motion, and decreased quality of life. 

Early diagnosis and treatment of RA can help prevent or minimize these complications. If you are experiencing any of these rheumatoid arthritis symptoms, it’s important to see a healthcare provider for an evaluation.

A rheumatoid arthritis specialist in NYC examining joint x-rays.

How Is Rheumatoid Arthritis Diagnosed?

The diagnosis of RA usually involves a combination of medical history, physical examination, laboratory tests, and imaging studies such as X-rays and MRIs. Once a diagnosis of RA is confirmed, the doctor will work with the patient to develop an individualized treatment plan. Early treatment can help control symptoms, slow joint damage, and improve overall quality of life.

What Is the Treatment for Rheumatoid Arthritis?

The treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) typically involves a multidisciplinary approach that includes medication, physical therapy, occupational therapy, and sometimes surgery. The goal of RA treatment is to relieve pain, reduce inflammation, and slow joint damage to improve mobility and overall quality of life. Here are some common approaches to RA treatment:

Medication

Anti-inflammatory drugs, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or corticosteroids, can help relieve pain and reduce inflammation in the affected joints. Disease-modifying drugs (DMARDs) may also be prescribed to slow the progression of the disease.

Physical Therapy

Physical therapy can help improve joint flexibility, strength, and range of motion. A physical or occupational therapist can design a specific exercise program that meets the patient’s needs and limitations.

Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapy can help people with RA learn new ways to perform daily activities and reduce joint strain. An occupational therapist can suggest modifications to the patient’s environment, such as ergonomic tools or assistive devices.

Joint Replacement

In severe cases of RA, joint replacement surgery may be necessary to replace damaged joints with artificial ones. This can improve mobility and reduce pain, but it is typically a last resort after other treatments have failed.

Get the Help You Need

Are you or a loved one experiencing joint pain, stiffness, and swelling? These symptoms could be signs of rheumatoid arthritis. 

At Maiden Lane Medical in Manhattan, NY, we specialize in diagnosing and treating rheumatoid arthritis. Our team of experienced physicians and healthcare professionals use the latest diagnostic tools and treatment options to develop individualized care plans that meet each patient’s unique needs.

Contact our medical practice today to schedule a consultation and get the expert care you deserve! Together, we can help manage your symptoms, slow joint damage, and improve your quality of life.

Medically Reviewed By

Jennifer Zocca, MD
Medical Director and Pain Management Physician

Our doctors who provide this service

Profile Photo of Dr. Harry Gruenspan

Harry Gruenspan, MD, PhD

Board Certified Endocrinologist, Internal Medicine & Metabolism

Kate Zhang, DPT

Board Certified Pelvic Physical Therapist
Profile Photo of Dr. Jennifer Zocca

Jennifer Zocca, MD

Dual Board Certified Pain Medicine Physician & Anesthesiologist, Medical Director

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