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Fam Community Health. 2003 Jan-Mar;26(1):41-52.

The role of complementary and alternative therapies in managing rheumatoid arthritis.

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Center for the Study of Complementary and Alternative Therapies, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, USA.


Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic, inflammatory autoimmune disease that is characterized by joint stiffness in the morning, symmetric joint swelling, and generalized fatigue. Given the limitations of medical treatment and the ongoing problems with symptom management, it is not at all surprising that many individuals with RA turn to complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) therapies. This article provides a brief overview of what is known about CAM use in RA, presents information on a few of the most popular therapies, and recommends further resources for nurses who work with individuals with RA.

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