Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disease characterized by chronic inflammation of the joints, which may result in joint damage. Any joint may be affected, but most commonly small joints in the hands and feet, wrists, elbows, and knees are involved. The onset of RA increases with age, and rises substantially from the ages of 40 to 50 years onwards. The prevalence is about 1% in the Western world, and women are two to three times more likely to be affected than men1. Important consequences of RA are pain and disability. Disability may range from limitations in executing a simple task to restrictions in societal roles, including participation in paid employment.

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Financial support for the publication of this thesis by the Dutch Arthritis Association (Reumafonds) and the Department of Public Health, Erasmus MC, University Medical Center Rotterdam, is gratefully acknowledged
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam
J.M.W. Hazes (Mieke)
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Geuskens, G. (2009, April 15). Work and health in early arthritis. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/30817