What is adult Still’s disease?
Adult Still’s disease is a rare type of inflammatory arthritis that features fevers, rash and joint pain. Some people have just one episode of adult Still’s disease. In other people, the condition persists or recurs.
This inflammation can destroy affected joints, particularly the wrists. Treatment involves medications, such as prednisone, that help control inflammation.
How common is adult Still’s disease?
Adult Still’s disease is a rare condition affecting about one in every 100,000 adults. Men and women are equally affected. Please discuss with your doctor for further information.
What are the symptoms of adult Still’s disease?
The common symptoms of adult Still’s disease are:
- You might have a daily fever of at least 102 F (38.9 C) for a week or longer. The fever usually peaks in the late afternoon or early evening. You might have two fever spikes daily, with your temperature returning to normal in between.
- A salmon-pink rash might come and go with the fever. The rash usually appears on your trunk, arms or legs.
- Sore throat. This is one of the first symptoms of adult Still’s disease. The lymph nodes in your neck might be swollen and tender.
- Achy and swollen joints. Your joints — especially your knees and wrists — might be stiff, painful and inflamed. Ankles, elbows, hands and shoulders might also ache. The joint discomfort usually lasts at least two weeks.
- Muscle pain. Muscular pain usually ebbs and flows with the fever, but the pain can be severe enough to disrupt your daily activities.
The signs and symptoms of this disorder can mimic those of other conditions, including lupus and a type of cancer called lymphoma.
There may be some symptoms not listed above. If you have any concerns about a symptom, please consult your doctor.
When should I see my doctor?
If you have any signs or symptoms listed above or have any questions, please consult with your doctor. Everyone’s body acts differently. It is always best to discuss with your doctor what is best for your situation.
What causes adult Still’s disease?
It’s not certain what causes adult Still’s disease. Some researchers suspect the condition might be triggered by a viral or bacterial infection.
What increases my risk for adult Still’s disease?
There are many risk factors for adult Still’s disease, such as:
- Age groups of 15 and 46
Diagnosis & treatment
The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. ALWAYS consult with your doctor for more information.
How is adult Still’s disease diagnosed?
No single test identifies adult Still’s disease. Imaging tests can reveal damage caused by the disease, while blood tests can help rule out other conditions that have similar symptoms.
How is adult Still’s disease treated?
Doctors use a variety of drugs to treat adult Still’s disease. The type of drug you’ll take depends on the severity of your symptoms and whether you have side effects.
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Over-the-counter NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) or naproxen sodium (Aleve), may help with mild joint pain and inflammation. Stronger NSAIDs are available by prescription. NSAIDs can damage the liver, so you may need regular blood tests to check liver function.
- Most people who have adult Still’s disease require treatment with steroids, such as prednisone. These powerful drugs reduce inflammation, but may lower your body’s resistance to infections and increase your risk of developing osteoporosis.
- The medication methotrexate (Trexall) is often used in combination with prednisone, which allows the prednisone dose to be reduced.
- Biologic response modifiers. Drugs such as infliximab (Remicade), adalimumab (Humira) and etanercept (Enbrel) have shown some promise, but their long-term benefit is still unknown. If other medications haven’t worked, your doctor may suggest trying anakinra (Kineret), tocilizumab (Actemra) or rituximab (Rituxan).
Lifestyle changes & home remedies
What are some lifestyle changes or home remedies that can help me manage adult Still’s disease?
The following lifestyles and home remedies might help you cope with adult Still’s disease:
- Understand your medications. Even if you’re symptom-free some days, it’s important to take your medications as your doctor recommends. Controlling inflammation helps reduce the risk of complications.
- Supplement your diet. If you’re taking high doses of prednisone, talk to your doctor about taking more calcium and vitamin D supplements to help prevent osteoporosis.
- Keep moving. Although you might not want to work out if your joints ache, exercise is recommended for all types of arthritis. Exercise can help you maintain your range of motion and relieve pain and stiffness.
If you have any questions, please consult with your doctor to better understand the best solution for you.
Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Adult Still's disease. http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/adult-stills-disease/home/ovc-20190876. Accessed September 12, 2017.
Adult-Onset Still's Disease. http://www.healthline.com/health/adult-stills-disease#overview1. Accessed September 12, 2017.
Review Date: September 12, 2017 | Last Modified: September 13, 2017