DR. ONG KEE LEONG

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)

The initial symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis may be minimal and not easily noticeable. However, it is vital to diagnose the disease as soon as possible, as early treatment can significantly reduce long-term complications.

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DR. ONG KEE LEONG

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)

The initial symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis may be minimal and not easily noticeable. However, it is vital to diagnose the disease as soon as possible, as early treatment can significantly reduce long-term complications.

Book Appointment

Causes

Rheumatoid arthritis occurs when your immune system’s antibodies mistakenly attack and destroy healthy cells or the synovium in the case of RA. The synovium is a soft tissue lining around your joints to protect them. The actual reason is largely unknown, but many believe specific genetic components or viruses might play a significant role.

What Is Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)?

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune and chronic inflammatory condition where your immune system mistakenly attacks healthy cells in your body, causing inflammation and pain in the affected area.

It normally develops in your joints at first and may eventually affect other tissues and organs such as the heart, lungs and eyes.

Types of RA

Seropositive RA

If you have seropositive RA, it means that you have a positive rheumatoid factor (RF) or anti-cyclic citrullinated peptide (anti-CCP) blood test result. This indicates the presence of antibodies that cause your immune system to damage your joints.

Seronegative RA

For seronegative RA, you have a negative RF or anti-CCP blood test result. Although these antibodies and proteins are absent, you may still develop rheumatoid arthritis, which is generally less severe.

Juvenile RA

This type of RA occurs in children aged 16 and below.

Signs & Symptoms

  • Fatigue
  • Decreased joint mobility and function
  • Joint pain, stiffness, swelling or tenderness
  • Eye inflammation or redness
  • Inflammation of other organs such as the heart and lungs

Diagnosing RA

The initial symptoms of RA may be minimal and not easily noticeable. However, it is vital to consult an experienced orthopaedic specialist to diagnose the disease as soon as possible. Early treatment can significantly reduce long-term complications.

A physical examination will be conducted to check for joint tenderness and swelling as well as joint reflexes and range of motion.

A combination of the following tests may also be performed to diagnose RA:

  • Blood tests for the presence of RF/anti-CCP antibodies
  • Imaging tests such as an x-ray, ultrasound or MRI scan

 

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Treatment Options

There are various treatment options for RA. One or more of these options may be used:

Medications

  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (such as ibuprofen) and corticosteroids
  • Conventional disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) such as methotrexate
  • Biologic agents (a newer form of DMARDs) such as abatacept (Orencia)

Physical therapy

Gentle stretching and strengthening exercises can restore the range of motion and mobility of joints.

Surgery

Surgery to repair damaged joints may be recommended if medications fail to prevent or deter joint damage.

Why Do Patients Choose Dr Ong Kee Leong?

  • Dr. Ong Is Passionate In Sports, Giving Him A Deep Understanding Of Sports-Related Injuries And How They Can Be Treated
  • Personalised And Professional Approach To Deliver High-Quality Orthopaedic Care Based On The Most Up-To-Date Literature
  • Detailed Aftercare Plan To Ensure Smooth, Long-Term Recovery
  • Fellowship Trained Surgeon With 15 Years Of Experience In Orthopaedic Conditions
  • Problem-Oriented, Well-Organised and Individualized Treatment Plans Catered To Your Specific Needs
  • Specialist In The Management Of Sports Injuries And Degenerative Conditions Of The Shoulder And Knee Joints
  • Knowledgeable And Pleasant Clinical Staff To Assist You With Your Every Need Detailed Aftercare Plan To Ensure
  • Our Care Is Conveniently Accessible At Mount Elizabeth Novena and Farrer Park Hospital
  • Minimal Waiting Time For Initial Consultation
  • Assistance With Medical Claims (e.g. Medisave & Integrated Shield Plans)

“At our clinic, we generally try to explore non-surgical treatment such as activities modification, physiotherapy and orthotics before recommending invasive intervention options.”

Dr. Ong Kee Leong

About Dr. Ong Kee Leong

Senior Consultant, MBBS (Singapore), MMed (Ortho), FRCSEd (Ortho)

Dr. Ong Kee Leong is a fellowship-trained orthopaedic surgeon. He subspecializes in shoulder and knee, foot and ankle, hand wrist and elbow surgeries, arthroscopic sports surgery, and the management of sports-related injuries.

He has been registered with the Singapore Medical Council as a specialist in Orthopaedic Surgery since 2011.

  • MBBS, National University of Singapore (NUS) Faculty of Medicine 2001
  • Member of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh 2007
  • Master of Medicine in Orthopaedic Surgery (NUS) 2007
  • Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh in Orthopaedic Surgery 2011
  • Health Manpower Development Plan (HMDP) Scholarship, Ministry of Health 2012-2013:
  • Sports Surgery and Arthroscopy in Germany (Hannover)
  • Adjunct Assistant Professor, Lee Kong Chian School Of Medicine, Nanyang Technological University
  • Senior Clinical Lecturer, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, NUS
Awards & Teaching
  • Dr. Ong had received numerous awards such as Best Service and Eastern Health Alliance Caring (Gold) Awards.
  • He also has an interest in clinical research and has written papers in multiple peer-review journals. As a Core Faculty of Singhealth Orthopaedic Surgery Residency Program, he oversees the training of junior orthopaedic surgeons.
  • Regularly invited to teach local and regional surgeons in Shoulder and Knee Surgery Courses.
  • He is a recipient of multiple teaching awards including the Singhealth Residency Outstanding Faculty Awards from 2014-2016 and Changi General Hospital Outstanding Educator Awards 2015-2016.

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    Yes, patients who have purchased Integrated Shield plans with riders for co-insurance and deductibles will be able to use them in our clinic for eligible procedures. For more information, contact us to find out if your procedure is claimable.

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