Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an unusual arthritis because it is not only about joint problem but also can lead to a systemic condition and affect your overall health. Many sufferers experience symptoms and signs that have nothing to do with the joint, too. For instance it can make you sweat, how and why?!
Actually, sweating is a normal part of the body to respond certain conditions such as when your body needs to cool itself down after exercise or if you work harder than usual. The next question, when is it considered normal and abnormal?
In general, if you sweat a lot without known reason, it may become a sign of trouble. Let’s say that the room temperature around you is normal (mild), you are not anxious and not exercising. You don’t experience fever, too – but you are sweating profusely.
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If you have all of these things, that is commonly considered ‘not normal’. Because the normal sweating should be equivalent to your normal physical need to sweat!
The good news, not all hyperhidrosis cases are a sign of serious condition, especially if it comes with explainable reason. But if it often comes for no reason, it’s better to see you doctor!
Medically, hyperhidrosis is divided into two main forms; primary focal hyperhidrosis (locally sweating) and secondary general hyperhidrosis (generalized sweating).
Primary focal hyperhidrosis
As the name implies, this type is fairly specific. In other words, it occurs locally or in the specific parts of your body. Head, underarm, face, feet, hand, and groin are common sites where it occurs.
And it is more likely to occur on both sides symmetrically. For example, if you are easier to sweat a lot in your left underarm, you also have it in your right underarm.
Typically, it is harmless or not linked to any serious condition. Most people with it are otherwise healthy! It is the most common kind of hyperhidrosis. And according to some studies, it might run in families.
Unfortunately it is not fully understood yet, and the exact cause of the problem is not exactly known and still debatable. Many experts think that it may be a consequence of a minor problem /dysfunction in the nervous system.
Interestingly, while it is considered harmless but many times it can be very bothersome. Many people with it say that it can interfere with the quality of their life and affect their self-esteem!
Secondary general hyperhidrosis
In this type, hyperhidrosis can cause an effect throughout the body (generalized sweating). It is often characterized by excessive sweating throughout the body at night.
It is less common, but it is more likely to become more serious medically! The word ‘secondary’ means it is triggered by something else.
In other words, there are some medical conditions and even the use of certain medications that can lead to secondary general hyperhidrosis.
Sweating is not the only one. Some people with RA also experience other symptoms that are not related to the joint such as lack of appetite, weight loss, fatigue, anemia, and fever.
But these symptoms are less common. Still, the primarily symptoms of RA are joint pain, stiffness, redness, and swelling.
Hyperhidrosis in RA is usually categorized into secondary general hyperhidrosis. The reason of why and how this symptom occurs is unclear yet.