Last Updated on Jul 28, 2021

What is Polyarthritis?

Polyarthritis refers to any type of arthritis that affects four or more joints simultaneously. Polyarthritis results in painful and inflamed joints. The name polyarthritis comes from two Greek words "poly" meaning "many" and "arthro" meaning "joint".

The term polyarthritis does not refer to a specific clinical entity or type of arthritis and can be a prominent symptom of different diseases such as rheumatic fever, psoriatic arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus erythematosus, juvenile idiopathic arthritis, gout, amyloidosis and others. There are more than hundred types of arthritis.

What are the Differences Between Rheumatoid Arthritis And Polyarthritis?

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that involves many joints symmetrically. The joint damage from RA is caused by your body attacking its own synovial tissues in the joints, leading to inflammation, stiffness, pain and possibly deformities in the affected joints. Rheumatoid arthritis can affect the whole body and lead to damage of major organs and even a shortened life span.

The term "polyarthritis" refers to the inflammatory condition of four or more joints caused by varied reasons such as infections, degeneration or accumulation of substances in the joints.


  1. Arthritis foundation - About arthritis - (
  2. Mayo Clinic- Diseases and Conditions - ( Genacol-What is arthritis? - (
  3. Arthritis research UK- What is arthritis? - ( information/conditions/arthritis/what-is-arthritis.aspx)
  4. NHS- Arthritis - (
  5. Rheumatoid Arthritis- rheumatoid arthritis versus osteoarthritis - (

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