With all of the misinformation floating around, I thought I would share the diagnosis criteria for each of these diseases.
Rheumatoid Arthritis:At least four of the following criteria must be met in order to diagnose a patient with RA
- Morning stiffness or stiffness after sitting for a prolonged period that lasts at least one hour and has been present for at least six weeks.
- Swelling of three or more joints for at least six weeks.
- At least one swollen area in the wrist, hand, or fingers
- Symmetrical joint swelling
- Presence of rheumatoid nodules
- Abnormal Rheumatoid Factor levels in the blood
- X-ray changes in the hands - although this is now thought to be evident only in disease progression.
Lupus:Any combination of four of the following eleven criteria are a good indication the patient may have Lupus:
- Rash - fixed redness either flat or raised over the nose and cheeks
- Discoid rash - red, circular raised patches with scaling, hair follicle plugging and possible scaring.
- Photosensitivity - exposure to sun or ultraviolet light causes the rash.
- Oral and nasopharangyeal ulcers
- Arthritis of two or more joints with tenderness and swelling
- Pleuritis, pericarditis or serositis
- Renal disorder with protein >0.5g/d or 3+ cellular casts in urine
- Neurologic disorder: either seizures or psychosis without other causes
- Hematologic disorder - either hemolytic anemia, leukopenia, lymphopenia, or thrombocytopenia without a drug-induced cause.
- Immunologic disorder - Anti-dsDNA, anti-SM, and/or anti-phospholipid
- Antinuclear antibodies: An abnormal ANA titer in absence of drugs known to induce.