Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) | All You Need to Know About Rheumatoid Arthritis

Causes of rheumatoid arthritis

What are the causes of rheumatoid arthritis?

Rheumatoid arthritis is considered an idiopathic (of unknown cause) disease as nobody knows for sure what causes the immune system to malfunction. However, Ongoing studies have been examining the potential risks of RA. Researchers have put some theories and most of them show that genetic factors play a major role in the prevalence of rheumatoid arthritis. International awareness of how badly RA affects people so many studies are being made about what may contribute to causing rheumatoid arthritis or worsening its symptoms.

Most doctors approved that rheumatoid arthritis is related to human genes and tend to run in families. the most frequent question regarding the previous point is “is rheumatoid arthritis hereditary?”, well there is not a RA causing gene, so it is not hereditary. Statistics show that the risk of getting rheumatoid arthritis increase if you are genetically related to a RA patient as If there is a family member with RA, the probability of getting RA increases by three folds to eight folds. Siblings have a 2 to 3 times higher risk of developing RA. Doctors have identified some genes in the human genome that may predispose their owner to rheumatoid arthritis, these genes may be functioning well in some people and regulate specific immune responses.

Researchers do not fully understand how these genetic markers interact with one another and lead to this immune disorder. The HLA (human leukocyte antigen) gene is accused to be the most significant genetic marker that causes RA. Despite the importance of the HLA gene in distinguishing between self-antigen (natural tissue) and invading foreign bodies in most people, it may mistake and develop immune disorders.

A less approved theory suggests that rheumatoid arthritis has a bacterial origin or caused by a virus that triggers RA, many researchers have dedicated their lives to trying to identify that agent, but they could not. Supporters of this theory claim that the immunity system at some point fails to differentiate between tissues of body joints and the invading pathogen. Other predisposing factors increase your chance of getting rheumatoid arthritis such as having other immune disorders especially type 2 diabetes mellitus. It is believed that the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis if you are overweight or a smoker is substantially higher. It is hard to know for sure who will get RA. However, it is believed that RA may be caused by both genetic and environmental factors.