Chuang Gung Medical Foundation, Division of Pediatric Allergy, Asthma and Rheumatology - UNREGISTERED VERSION

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Rheumatology center

Juvenile idiopathic arthritis FAQ:

by Min-Jay Yang

Q: What are the most common early symptoms and how long does it take to confirm a diagnosis?

A: Symptoms include joint discomfort, swelling, redness or limited range of motion.  It is usually more severe in the morning when waking up and improve later in the day, giving parents the sense of the child “faking” the discomfort.  The diagnosis is made by excluding other common pediatric joint diseases (such as bacterial arthritis or reactive arthritis … etc) and symptoms must persist for more than 6 weeks or above.    

Q: How frequent do children with juvenile idiopathic arthritis suffer from permanent joint destruction?

A: Roughly 30% of all children with juvenile idiopathic arthritis suffer from some kind of joint deformity.  Joint deformities usually occurs in children with delayed diagnosis, poor compliance to treatment and severe disease course.   Prompt and correct  treatment together with rehabilitation can help prevent and sometimes even recover some degree of joint destruction.

Q: I suspect my child is suffering from juvenile idiopathic arthritis but I am not sure.  How long should I observe his condition before seek medical help?

A: You should bring your child to see a pediatric physician whenever you suspect there is something wrong.  

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