Finger joints larger in morning


I haven't been diagnosed with any kind of arthritis yet but I thought that this community would be a good place to start if I had possible symptoms (before going to see my GP, obviously).

For the last couple of weeks I have noticed that the lower joints of the fingers on my right hand are larger than they used to be; I only noticed this because I was trying (and failing) to get some rings on. After a few hours any swelling that there may have been seems to have gone down as I can get the rings on without any problems.

Is this indicative of RA? Or is it likely to be something else? I do have some knee pain but I am hypermobile and the likelihood of osteoarthritis is apparently quite high for me. I do also have a pre-existing autoimmune condition.

Many thanks for any help


3 Replies

  • Hi hose1975,

    I have put links to our articles on rheumatoid arthritis and diagnosis for you to look at.

    I hope that these help you . If you want to have a chat about RA, the symptoms and diagnosis then please feel free to call the helpline on:

    0800 298 7650 Monday - Friday 9.30am - 4.30pm


    Beverley (NRAS Helpline)

  • Hiya hose1975. Sorry you find yourself coming to seek us out here but hope you get lots of help. My initial thought was OA rather than RD because if it's just your lower DIP joints affected (the joints above your fingernail) that would certainly point to OA but if the swelling comes & goes on the PIP joints then that's more likely to be an RD warning. Whichever it is they need to be seen by your GP & if he's of the opinion it's underlying inflammation then he'll refer you Rheumatology.

    Your knees could also be OA or RD but you may be able to determine that yourself if they're stiff, warm & a little swollen on rising, sore after exercising & again stiff, warm & a little swollen at night or when you've been sitting for a while, that may be OA.

    Often people with pre-existing autoimmune conditions such as hypothyroidism (not sure about hypermobility) can be predisposed to other autoimmune disease. It might be worth you taking a look at the NRAS website

    Hope this helps & if you feel it may well be RD the sooner you see your GP the better.

  • The symptom table on this link may be helpful too

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