RA tends to run in the families showing genetic linkage. It is also clubbed in the category of autoimmune diseases where it is believed that certain infections or environmental factors trigger the immune system to attack the body's own tissues resulting in inflammation.
This autoimmune response causes chronic inflammation of the joints which may progress to joint deformities.
Emotional stress can also be one of the trigger factors which can initiate the disease process or can act as a maintaining factor.
Most commonly seen in people between 40 to 60 years of age, although it may begin at any age.
Females are more commonly affected than men in the ratio of 3:1