11 Diseases That Mimic Rheumatoid Arthritis
Fibromyalgia – Fibromyalgia can be characterized by diffuse symmetrical arthralgias and stiffness at rest, but the absence of synovitis, the lack of pain on motion, and normal laboratory and imaging studies favor the diagnosis of fibromyalgia, distinguishing it from rheumatoid arthritis, according to the Cleveland Clinic.
The Bottom Line
There are conditions that mimic rheumatoid arthritis, especially early in the course of the disease. The primary common characteristic is polyarthritis. A patient’s medical history, observation of symptoms and disease manifestations over time, and additional diagnostic testing help distinguish the conditions from rheumatoid arthritis.
Gout and Pseudogout. Feyrouz Al-Ashkar. Cleveland Clinic. Accessed June 18, 2014.
Rheumatoid Arthritis. William S. Wilke. Cleveland Clinic. Accessed June 18, 2014.
Systemic Sclerosis/Scleroderma: A Treatable Multisystem Disease. Monique Hinchcliff, M.D. and John Varga, M.D. American Family Physician. October 15, 2008.
Diagnosis of Early Rheumatoid Arthritis: What the Non-Specialist Needs to Know. E Suresh, M.D. MRCP. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine. September 2004.