Conditions With Symptoms Similar to Polymyalgia Rheumatica or Giant Cell Arteritis
Medical conditions affecting joints and muscles that may cause symptoms like those caused by polymyalgia rheumatica include:
- Rheumatoid arthritis, an inflammation of the membranes or tissues lining the joints. Symptoms include painful, swollen, and stiff joints.
- Polymyositis, an inflammatory muscle disease. Symptoms include muscle weakness, joint pain, trouble swallowing, fever, fatigue, and weight loss.
- Spondyloarthropathy, diseases of the spinal joints. Symptoms include pain, morning stiffness, and fatigue.
- Fibromyalgia. Symptoms include widespread muscle and soft tissue pain and tenderness, especially in the trunk, neck, and shoulders.
- Joint problems such as bursitis and tendinopathy. These problems usually happen in one joint but sometimes can be on both sides of the body, such as in both shoulders.
- Osteoarthritis. Symptoms include pain, stiffness, and sometimes swelling.
Other medical conditions that may cause symptoms like those caused by polymyalgia rheumatica include:
- Bacterial endocarditis, an infection of the heart valves. Symptoms include fever, fatigue, weight loss, and painful joints.
- Cancer of the kidneys, lymphatic system (lymphoma), ovaries, or stomach, or cancer of the bone marrow (myeloma).
- Hypothyroidism, an underactive thyroid gland. Symptoms include fatigue, weakness, and depression.
- Hyperparathyroidism, an overactive parathyroid gland. Hyperparathyroidism can increase the amount of calcium in the blood. Symptoms include constipation, nausea, and fatigue.
- Parkinson's disease, a brain disorder. Symptoms include stiff muscles.
Giant cell arteritis
Medical conditions that cause symptoms like those caused by giant cell arteritis include:
Stroke, often caused by atherosclerosis. Symptoms can include:
- Sudden vision changes.
- Sudden numbness, tingling, weakness, or loss of movement in your face, arm, or leg, especially on only one side of your body.
- Vision problems, such as macular degeneration or a detached retina. Symptoms can range from blurred vision to sudden blindness.
- Inflammation of blood vessels (vasculitis) of the central nervous system. Symptoms are similar to those of a stroke, such as loss of vision, inability to use an arm or a leg, or trouble speaking.
- Takayasu's arteritis, a disease that affects the aorta and the arteries in the lung. Symptoms include vision problems.
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