Joint pain in Sjogren's Syndrome

Joint pain is one of the most common symptoms of Sjögren’s syndrome. Multiple joints are painful, usually episodically with periods of joint pain, known as “flares”, followed by periods of little or no joint pain. Tenderness and swelling of the joints, when present, are indicative of inflammatory arthritis.

In Sjögren’s syndrome, this type of arthritis usually affects the fingers, wrists and ankles. The shoulders, hips and knees may also be painful.

Non-pharmacologic measures to treat joint pain:
  • application of moist heat to the hands with a paraffin bath can help relieve stiffness of the fingers and wrists in the morning.
  • Gentle exercise, including Tai Chi, yoga and dancing, can serve to strengthen muscles and preserve joint range of motion.
  • Nutritional supplements, such as glucosamine or fish oils, may also help some patients.
  • Experimenting with one’s diet may reveal certain foods that aggravate the joint pain. This is variable, but elimination of dairy, bread products, or excessive salt can reduce joint pain in some individuals.
INFORMATION THANKS TO Johns Hopkins Sjögren’s Center