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Arthritis symptoms: 15 common arthritis signs to ‘call a doctor immediately’

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Arthritis is very common, and it’s been diagnosed in more than 10 million people in the UK alone. While the most common signs of arthritis include joint pain and inflammation, there are also some signs that should never be ignored.

The most common types of arthritis include osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

About nine million people have osteoarthritis in the UK, while the second most common type of arthritis is rheumatoid arthritis.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition that affects more than 400,000 patients in the UK.

If you have rheumatoid arthritis, it’s absolutely essential that you watch out for certain dangerous symptoms.

“People with rheumatoid arthritis can develop certain symptoms that are really warning signs of something occurring in their bodies that is not what the doctor expects to happen,” said rheumatologist Dr William Shiel.

He wrote for medical website Medical Net: “These are signs that can also sometimes represent a significant danger.

“These ‘rheumatoid warning signs’ are reasons to call the doctor, so that they can be interpreted in light of the patient’s overall condition.

“When the doctor who is aware of your condition hears of these symptoms, he/she can determine whether or not they are serious and if any action should be taken immediately or shortly.”

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There are around 15 of these key symptoms that should be watched out for, he added.

One of these signs is simply having joint pain that gets significantly worse over a short space of time.

Some patients may develop an unexplained fever that could reach more than 38 degrees Celsius.

A numb or tingling pain could be caused by a swelling that irritates the nervous system, while rheumatoid arthritis could also lead to a painful rash.

Nausea is a common complaint among rheumatoid arthritis patients, added Shiel.

It’s not usually serious, but it can be annoying and might be resolved by a doctor’s visit.

Patients’ medication might also trigger some side effects, including constipation and diarrhoea.

Any new constipation should be reported to a doctor, however.

Serious symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis

Severe joint pain


Numb pain


Eye redness

Loss of vision





Dark stools




Chest pain

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