Signs & Symptoms of Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis

The symptoms of Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis vary considerably from one child to another. In some cases, the symptoms may be mild while in other cases, they may be quite severe. The symptoms may also change over a period of time.  In many cases, the symptoms may increase in severity and then disappear completely. The common signs and symptoms of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis are as follows:

  • Pain, swelling and stiffness of the joints. Many children are not able to recognize these symptoms or may not report them. These symptoms would be most severe in the mornings.
  • The swelling and pain may hamper joint function and limit the range of motion. Some children learn to compensate for this and may not display any disability. In severe cases, there may be weakness and reduced physical activity.
  • In severe cases of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, the child may limp or favor one leg. This is especially the case when the knee joints are affected.
  • Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis results in the abnormal development of the joints and so the joints may appear knobby.
  • Eye inflammation may result in redness, pain and irritation in the eyes. There may also be light sensitivity. If left untreated, the inflammation may even lead to vision loss.
  • There may be recurring fever which may fluctuate throughout the day.
  • In some cases, a mild rash may occur.
  • Muscle aches may be experienced all over the body.
  • The lymph nodes may swell.
  • Children with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis often experience weight loss. This may be because the unpleasant symptoms result in reduced appetite. It may also indicate inflammation in the digestive tract.
  • Children with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis tend to grow at a slower pace.

  1. Edward H. Giannini, James T. Cassidy, Earl J. Brewer, Alexander Shaikov, Alexei Maximov, Nina Kuzmina, Comparative efficacy and safety of advanced drug therapy in children with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, Seminars in Arthritis and Rheumatism, Volume 23, Issue 1, August 1993, Pages 34-46, ISSN 0049-0172, 10.1016/S0049-0172(05)80025-3.
  2. Rosario Di Toro, Cesare Polito, Nutrition in Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis, Nutrition Research, Volume 17, Issue 4, April 1997, Pages 741-758, ISSN 0271-5317, 10.1016/S0271-5317(97)00044-4.