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20 Important Things Doctors Wish You Knew About Arthritis

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10. Early treatment of RA can put it in remission

While there’s no way to reverse joint degeneration, getting treated as soon as possible after the onset of pain and stiffness can ease symptoms and prevent further harm. “The earlier you treat, the better,” says Paula Marchetta, MD, clinical professor of medicine at the New York University School of Medicine and president of the American College of Rheumatology.

Unfortunately, a survey found that it took people with RA four years and visits to at least three different doctors to get a proper diagnosis, because rheumatoid arthritis is often misdiagnosed. Even with the right information, doctors may provide a completely different diagnosis.

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