Rheumatoid arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis

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Credit: ADAM GAULT/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: MODEL RELEASED. Rheumatoid arthritis. General practitioner examining a patient's hand for signs of rheumatoid arthritis. This condition is caused by the immune system attacking the body's own tissues, causing progressive joint and cartilage destruction. As the cartilage is worn away, new bone grows as part of the repair process. This causes stiffness and deformity of the fingers. Treatment is with anti- inflammatory drugs and physiotherapy. This patient is wearing a copper bracelt on her hand which some believe to has healing properties.

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