Which joints are most commonly affected in rheumatoid arthritis?

Answers from April Chang-Miller, M.D.

Early in the course of rheumatoid arthritis, the most common joints involved include:

  • The joints that attach your fingers to your hands
  • The middle joints of your fingers
  • Your wrists
  • The joints that attach your toes to your feet
  • Your ankles

Larger joints — such as your elbows, shoulders and knees — often are affected later in the course of the disease. Rheumatoid arthritis typically develops in the same joints on both sides of your body. Signs and symptoms include pain, warmth and swelling of the affected joints, with morning stiffness lasting longer than an hour.

Apr. 25, 2014 See more Expert Answers