Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) Community
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Rheumatoid arthritis and lung scarring question

My mother has been diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis recently, for the past 10 years
She has had ling issues which they discovered she had scarring in her lungs for many years. (Bronchiectassis)
Moderate in one lung and mild in the other, the lung specialist checked for TB and it was negative this was before mum was diagnosed for rheumatoid arthritis.
She started getting pains and stiffness in her body a year ago and was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis.
My question is, could the rheumatoid arthritis have caused her lung scarring? If yes how? Also if she takes her rheumatoid arthritis tablets should this alsohelp control and limit her lung damage along with other measures that we take?

3 Responses
3147776 tn?1549545810
Sorry so late - I just saw this.  It does appear that RA is linked to lung scarring: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/rheumatoid-arthritis/expert-answers/rheumatoid-arthritis/faq-20058245

There's no one "tablet" that people with RA would be taking, so you should definitely discuss this with her doctor.
Thanks for the reply and link

It seems its quite unclear for the treatment of bronchiectasis with Rheumatoid Arthritis. The treatment seems the same as one who has lung issues without rheumatoid arthritis.

The focus is on antibiotics, clearing airways (mucus), reducing inflamation by inhalers/nebulizers for the disease (copd) which my mother already manages.

I've just read a study online showing
The immune suppressant treatment for arthritis could contribute or make lung issues worse due to lower/weaker  immune system which is a worry.

Currently we are in initial phases for RA treatment (2 to 3 months) for my mother, still suspect she might have sjogrens syndrome.

Her symptoms currently are her right knee swelling which has got better, she gets intermittent pains in hands and her elbow had swelling a few months ago which have resolved.

Shes had very low Vit D which she takes tablets for and has actually helped symptoms.

She has had a few lung infections and antibiotic treatments through out the year

Her blood test for RA was just above 70 which ive been told is very high, blood test for crp had been just mildly high. She has had high uric acid in the past but on re-testing it is normal.

Thanks again
Avatar universal
Pulmonary manifestation of rheumatoid arthritis include various forms of interstitial lung disease/fibrosis, bronchiectasis, necrobiotic sometimes cavitating nodules, and/or pleural effusion/thickening.
Avatar universal
Check the medications, as some of them also can cause damage to the lungs (f.ex metotrexate), so always read the things, ask a pharmacist and discuss it with the doctor.
Very good she had symptom relief when taking D-vits! :) If taking NSAIDs, get the iron levels checked regulary, as it can inhibit the uptake of iron.
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