Rheumatoid Arthritis

If you suspect that you have or have been recently diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, the rheumatologists of UMass Memorial Medical Center work closely with your primary care physician to treat you.

What is Rheumatoid Arthritis?

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a disease in which the lining of joints becomes inflamed, releasing substances that can break down cartilage and bone. 

If left untreated, RA can result in joint destruction. However, many medications are now available that very effectively relieve joint inflammation, improve your symptoms, reduce the risk of cardiovascular complications, and prevent joint damage from occurring.

With prompt diagnosis and early treatment, patients with rheumatoid arthritis now typically return to full physical activity with few or no remaining symptoms of the disease.

Diagnosis and Treatment for Rheumatoid Arthritis

UMass Memorial rheumatologists are experts in diagnosing and treating rheumatoid arthritis.

Your rheumatology care consists of:

  • Confirming your diagnosis, including thoroughly reviewing your medical history performing a physical examination and obtaining appropriate laboratory tests and X-rays 
  • Developing a personalized treatment plan, using the most advanced, state-of the-art treatment strategies and medications
  • Providing extensive education about the disease and counseling regarding lifestyle and physical activity
  • Partnering with your primary care physician regarding health maintenance to reduce your risk of developing associated conditions
  • Monitoring your medications to assure maximum control of your disease and minimize the risk of developing side effects
  • Partnering with our orthopedic colleagues, if needed