Date of Award

Spring 4-24-2020

Document Type

Honors Thesis


Health Science

First Advisor

Jonelle Hook

Second Advisor

Jamie Turgeon-Drake

Third Advisor

Amy Nelson


Rheumatoid Arthritis, Autoimmune, Treatment, Survey

Subject Categories

Diseases | Medicine and Health Sciences


Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a systemic and debilitating autoimmune disease. The varying levels of severity of rheumatoid arthritis make it notably unique. Rheumatoid arthritis is not strictly an inflammatory disease of the joints; it is an extensive disease with many extra-articular manifestations that complicate its treatment and management. In addition to being a disease that is internally driven by the body’s immune system, current research reveals the pervasive influence of environmental factors on the disease’s severity and activity. This literature review examines the pathophysiology of RA, its implications on the body, and current treatment options to ameliorate some of its symptoms and complications. A particular focus on the efficacy and potential value of diet, psychosocial interventions, physical activity, and therapeutic modalities is central to the current work. Evidence using a literature review of peer-reviewed articles discussing RA and its many facets is utilized. A survey of patients with RA reveals patient attitudes and discretions towards their arduous personal experiences with rheumatoid arthritis. Overall, the findings indicate that having a well-versed interprofessional team of physicians and health professionals supporting patients with rheumatoid arthritis using an integrated model of care, is critical to improved overall well-being and disease outcomes.

Included in

Diseases Commons



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