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Is there any link between heavy manual work and development of rheumatoid arthritis?

Q) I began to suffer with rheumatoid arthritis four years ago at the age of 50. Consequently I had to retire early from my work as a nurse in an elderly care unit. Since retiring I've met many nurses who worked on ‘heavy’ wards prior to ‘no lifting policies’ and now, like myself, suffer with rheumatoid arthritis. Is there any link between heavy manual work and development of rheumatoid arthritisthat you or your colleagues are aware of?
G Bird, Walton, Chesterfield, Derbyshire (Summer 2006) 

A) There's a small amount of literature on the relationship between accidents and stress and the development of arthritis, but nothing on the association between heavy lifting and arthritis, I’m afraid. In addition, there's no relationship between rheumatoid arthritis and any occupational group that I know of, unless there's something peculiar about Chesterfield (other than the spire, of course).


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