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What are some rheumatic diseases?

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Fibromyalgia, ankylosing spondylitis, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis are some examples of rheumatic diseases, according to the American College of Rheumatology. Rheumatic diseases affect the joints and muscles, notes WebMD. Common signs and symptoms are pain, stiffness and swelling of the joints. As of 2015 there are more than 100 rheumatic diseases that collectively affect more than 46 million Americans, indicates the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases.

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Fibromyalgia is a common disorder that presents with widespread musculoskeletal pains, fatigue, sleep and mood issues, notes Mayo Clinic. Symptoms begin after an infection, physical trauma, significant psychological stress or surgery. Since it is a chronic condition, symptoms of fibromyalgia never disappear completely. However, there are many medications to control the disorder. Relaxation, exercises and stress-reduction measures sometimes also help, indicates Everyday Health.

Ankylosing spondylitis affects the joints where the spine attaches to the pelvis. It usually starts as lower back pain and is common in young men, states Everyday Health. Symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis include pain and stiffness after activity, gradual pain in the lower back, and lower back pain that works its way up the spine, notes WebMD.

Rheumatoid arthritis destroys the synovial tissues, causing pain, swelling and stiffness throughout the body, indicates Everyday Health. Osteoarthritis destroys cartilage and bone, causing disability and pain, notes WebMD. It is the most common type of arthritis, and affects more than 27 million adults in the United States, indicates, Everyday Health.

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