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J Am Acad Dermatol. 2005 Aug;53(2):191-209; quiz 210-2.

Rheumatoid arthritis: a review of the cutaneous manifestations.

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Department of Dermatology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA.


Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic inflammatory arthritis with significant extra-articular manifestations. Of note are unique cutaneous manifestations that the dermatologist may encounter. This article will make the dermatologist more cognizant of these skin findings in patients with this systemic inflammatory disorder. It examines rheumatoid arthritis, focusing on the general nonspecific and disease-specific rheumatoid arthritic skin changes. Classic rheumatoid nodules, accelerated rheumatoid nodulosis, rheumatoid nodulosis, rheumatoid vasculitis, Felty syndrome, pyoderma gangrenosum, interstitial granulomatosus dermatitis with arthritis, palisaded neutrophilic and granulomatosis dermatitis, rheumatoid neutrophilic dermatitis, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, and adult-onset Still disease are reviewed. Understanding the cutaneous expressions of rheumatoid arthritis may lead to early diagnosis, prompt treatment, and lower morbidity and mortality for the affected persons. Learning objective At the completion of this learning activity, participants should be able to describe rheumatoid arthritis in terms of its epidemiology, etiology, pathogenesis, and general and specific cutaneous manifestations.

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