Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is a chronic autoimmune disease where the immune system, which normally acts as the body’s defense, becomes altered. This leads to joint pain, swelling and stiffness. RA tends to affect the small joints of the hands and/or feet, although it can be present in many other joints as well.
There’s More at Risk Thank Just Your Joints!
Left untreated, RA causes joint destruction resulting in chronic pain, loss of movement, deformity and disability. More importantly, because of inflammation, patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis are at a greater risk of heart disease — including heart attacks, strokes and blood clots — as well as cancer including solid tumors and lymphoma.
“What’s My Number?”: A Strategic Approach to RA Monitoring & Treatment
Dr. Arnold is a leading expert in the treatment of RA and has developed a comprehensive RA program to provide each patient with a coordinated, personalized care plan specific to their needs.
The Arnold RA program uses innovative tools and tests to understand each patient’s disease progression and monitor response to treatments. These include:
- A comprehensive interview with our staff including:
- Joint counts;
- MD-HAQ/Rapid 3 questionnaire, the best-validated way to document symptoms and monitor response to therapy.
- Sophisticated laboratory testing and imaging to diagnose, treat, monitor and predict arthritis symptoms including:
- Vectra-DA: innovative test measuring the presence of 12 biomarkers secreted by the immune system during RA and can be predictive of future damage. Changes in your “Vectra Number” help doctors monitor and adjust your treatment program. This test has been so successful, often patients first office-visit question is “What’s my number?”.
- Ultrasound Imaging – Xrays are not able to show synovial tissue which produces swelling, stiffness, pain and destruction in patients with RA. Ultrasound is the ideal way to see this tissue, detect bone destruction and determine severity of inflammation. It can also monitor response to therapy.
- Ultrasound Guided Injections – ORNS utilizes our onsite ultrasound imaging to ensure therapies are accurately placed providing ultimate effectiveness.
For more information on RA, we recommend visiting the National Institutes of Health or contact us for an appointment.