A 48-year-old woman presents with a five-month history of generalized joint pain, stiffness, and swelling, especially in her hands. She states that these symptoms have made it difficult to grasp objects and has made caring for her grandchildren problematic. She admits to increased fatigue, but she thought it was due to her stressful job.
FH: Grandmothers had “crippling” arthritis.
PE: remarkable for bilateral ulnar deviation of her hands as well as soft, boggy proximal interphalangeal joints. The metatarsals of both of her feet also exhibited swelling and warmth. Diagnosis: rheumatoid arthritis.
The pt. had various symptoms, explain how these factors are associated with RA and what is the difference between RA and OA?