Chapter

Epidemiology, genetics and economic burden of rheumatoid arthritis

Matthew Brown and Maarten Boers

in Rheumatoid Arthritis

Published on behalf of Oxford University Press

ISBN: 9780199556755
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199607334 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/med/9780199556755.003.0001

Series: Oxford Rheumatology Library

Epidemiology, genetics and economic burden of rheumatoid arthritis

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• Rheumatoid arthritis occurs in 1–2% of the population worldwide • The average age of incident cases is 50–55 years but may be rising • RA is more common in women than men, and in men is somewhat more common in cigarette smokers • The economic burden of RA is enormous and work disability is common • The natural history of RA includes a risk of premature mortality (by 5–10 years) • The most significant recognized predictor of premature mortality and work disability is functional disability • 60% of the risk of developing RA appears to be due to genetic factors • Genes involved in disease susceptibility include HLA-DRB1, with a strong link to the presence of anti-cyclic citrullinated peptide antibodies (ACPA) • Most patients have positive tests for rheumatoid factor and ACPA, but more than 30% are negative.

Chapter.  3073 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Rheumatology

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