Arthritis of the large joints at first presentation predicts the severity of rheumatoid arthritis (RA), say Dutch researchers. The association between the distribution of inflamed joints and the level of destruction of the joints of hands and feet was assessed in 28 patients. Analysis showed that the number of swollen joints, levels of C-reactive protein, presence of anti-CCP antibodies and symptoms of duration all predicted RA severity (Ann Rheum Dis online).
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