While arthritis impacts nearly 50 million adults in the United States, it is not a disease that is limited to adulthood. Consider the case of Ashley Russell. At the age of 14 months, Ashley was diagnosed with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. As a baby, her parents noticed that her knee was always swollen and that she often wanted to be carried instead of walking on her own (Cyr, 2012). After seeking medical care, Ashley’s underlying disorder was discovered. Arthritis in children is not uncommon. According to the CDC (2011), an estimated 294,000 children under age 18 have some form of arthritis or rheumatic condition. Due to the prevalence of the disorder in both children and adults, you must understand the pathophysiology and symptoms of arthritis in order to properly diagnose and prescribe treatment.
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