Are you searching “Conroe TX rheumatoid arthritis doctors in my area?” Well, Dr. Brionez at Advanced Rheumatology of Houston is capable of helping patients with this disease. Rheumatoid arthritis doctors are also known as rheumatologists. They diagnose and treat rheumatologic diseases, which affect connective tissues. For example, rheumatoid arthritis primarily affects the joints in the hands and feet.
Other connective tissues include ligaments, muscles, organs, and bone. Dr. Brionez can diagnose and treat arthritis, lupus, gout, osteoporosis, and more. There are all kinds of rheumatologic conditions, and Dr. Brionez is capable of treating many of them. Below, you can see the full list of diseases she can diagnose and treat.
- Polymyalgia Rheumatica
- Psoriatic Arthritis
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Sjögren’s Syndrome
- Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (Lupus)
Dr. Brionez has more than ten years of experience in rheumatology. She started her medical career by graduating from Texas A&M University with a Bachelor of Science in Nutritional Sciences. Then, she obtained her medical degree from Baylor College of Medicine. She also completed her Fellowship in Rheumatology at the University of Texas Health Science Center.
In 2007, Dr. Brionez became board-certified in internal medicine and then board-certified in Rheumatology two years later. Since 2009, she has been in practice, which has given her a plethora of knowledge. Her experience benefits patients because she has seen so many different types of cases. Rheumatoid arthritis is something she has significant experience with.
RA is an autoimmune disease and is the most common type of autoimmune arthritis. In fact, 1.3 million Americans are diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. Autoimmune diseases occur when the immune system attacks healthy tissues in the body. The defense mechanism believes the tissue to be a foreign pathogen it would normally attack. Viruses and infections are good examples.
Common symptoms of RA include swelling, pain, and stiffness in the joints. Smaller joints in the hands and feet are the most affected. However, any joint is capable of being impacted. Furthermore, anyone can develop RA. Though, women between the ages of 30 and 50 are the most affected. About 75 percent of patients are women, which is a significant portion.
When it comes to RA, joint pain and stiffness are worst in the morning. These symptoms may dissipate over a few hours or may reside all day. Some cases of rheumatoid arthritis affect organs like the skin, lungs, or eyes. Other common symptoms are listed below.
- Lack of energy
- Low fevers
- Loss of appetite
- Dry eyes or mouth
- Firm lumps around the elbows or hands
The cause of RA is unknown, but it is believed to be hereditary. Although, that is not the case in every patient. Certain genes people are born with are more likely to develop the disease, however.
Diagnosing Rheumatoid Arthritis
Examination of the joints and organs is one way a rheumatologist can diagnose RA. Rheumatoid arthritis damages joints that are irreversible, so it is important for patients to see a doctor as soon as they experience symptoms. X-rays and ultrasounds are ways of examining the joints and organs. Dr. Brionez will examine the condition of the area to determine a diagnosis.
The best technique for diagnosis is a blood test. Blood tests are able to detect certain antibodies related to the disease. About 60 to 70 percent of patients have these specific antibodies that blood tests will try to detect. In some cases, the antibodies are found in patients without RA, which is considered a false positive. Overall, the blood test can examine a number of things, such as the amount of inflammation, proteins, and more.
Diagnosis usually requires the symptoms to be present for at least three months. Patients are able to be diagnosed prior to that. If patients are diagnosed, then there are numerous treatment options available.
Treating Rheumatoid Arthritis
There is no cure for rheumatoid arthritis, so treatment is aimed at the symptoms. Medication helps RA patients live healthy lives free of pain and discomfort. No case is the same, and so each patient will receive different treatments. Medication is capable of reducing swelling and pain. Treatment should be started right away in order to prevent further damage to the joints.
In serious cases, patients need drugs that will block the signals of the immune system. Unfortunately, medication is not the only thing patients need to do in order to feel comfortable. Exercise or therapy is also encouraged in order to improve comfort naturally. Patients should walk or perform exercises that improve muscle strength. These steps help patients live pain-free and reduce the pressure on joints.
Rheumatoid Arthritis Research Study
There may be several options in terms of treatment, but not every patient responds adequately to them. So, there are research studies that are testing new drugs that seek to help current and future patients. The contRAst Program is one of those studies. Advanced Rheumatology of Houston is happy to participate in the study alongside many other clinics.
The study is testing an investigational drug that will slow the progress of RA. Currently, they are looking for participants to take part in the study. This study is splintered into three groups. You will be placed in one of the three groups through the duration of the study. Participants receive free medication, clinic visits, and possible travel support.
If you are interested in participating in the contRAst Program, then visit our rheumatoid arthritis research page to find out more. You will also find a link to the qualifying criteria site as well.
Conroe TX Rheumatoid Arthritis Doctors in My Area
Dr. Brionez has more than ten years of experience, which makes her an experienced doctor. She can handle your case of RA. Contact Advanced Rheumatology of Houston today by calling (281) 766-7886. Patients can schedule an appointment, or they can ask us about the research study. You may also contact us online via the online form.
Regardless, you will receive the same excellent care we provide. There is no need for you to suffer through the pain of RA. So, stop searching “Conroe TX rheumatoid arthritis doctors in my area” and start calling Advanced Rheumatology of Houston today.
Fun Facts about Conroe
- Lake Conroe is 22,000 acres!
- Conroe was first settled in the early 1800s.
- The downtown business district of the city was developed in the 1890s.
- Find more fun facts about Conroe here.