Surgical treatment for
rheumatoid arthritis is used to relieve severe pain
and improve function of severely deformed joints that don't respond to
medicine and physical therapy.
Total joint replacement
(arthroplasty) can be done for many different joints in the body. Its success
varies depending on which
joint is replaced.
Surgeries considered for people
who have severe rheumatoid arthritis include:
What to think about
Joint surgery often restores
near-normal movement in a person who has
osteoarthritis in just one or two joints. But this is
not the case for people affected by rheumatoid arthritis.
- Rheumatoid arthritis usually affects multiple
joints, particularly smaller joints, such as finger joints, which are needed
for many daily activities. Surgical treatment may not be an option for all of
the affected joints.
- Joint surgery or replacement can relieve
disabling pain and restore enough motion to allow you to do your daily
activities. But it will seldom restore the joint to normal.
Before you decide to have surgery, consult with an
orthopedic surgeon who is experienced in joint surgery
for rheumatoid arthritis.
- Questions About Joint Surgery
Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine
Nancy Ann Shadick, MD, MPH - Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
June 4, 2012
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