Reactive Arthritis

Reactive arthritis is a condition that may be triggered by a bacterial infection in the urinary or gastrointestinal tracts. It most often affects young men, although men of any age and women may also be affected.

Symptoms of reactive arthritis include:

  • Pain, swelling, and inflammation of the joints (arthritis), especially where the pelvis attaches to the spine (sacroiliac joint) and in the fingers, toes, and feet.
  • Inflammation of the eye (iritis).
  • Inflammation of the tube that carries urine out of the body (urethra). There may be discharge from the end of the penis (urethritis).
  • Discharge from the cervix.
  • Skin rash or small sores (ulcers), especially on the penis, on the soles of the feet, or in the mouth.

Several medicines can be used to treat reactive arthritis.

Is it an emergency?

If you or someone in your care has chest pains, difficulty breathing, or severe bleeding, it could be a life-threatening emergency. Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number immediately.
If you are concerned about a possible poisoning or exposure to a toxic substance, call Poison Control now at 1-800-567-8911.

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