Felty's Syndrome

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

  • Medical Editor: Catherine Burt Driver, MD
    Catherine Burt Driver, MD

    Catherine Burt Driver, MD

    Catherine Burt Driver, MD, is board certified in internal medicine and rheumatology by the American Board of Internal Medicine. Dr. Driver is a member of the American College of Rheumatology. She currently is in active practice in the field of rheumatology in Mission Viejo, Calif., where she is a partner in Mission Internal Medical Group.

What are risk factors for Felty's syndrome?

The risk factor for Felty's syndrome is having rheumatoid arthritis.

What are the signs and symptoms of Felty's syndrome?

Some patients with Felty's syndrome have more infections, such as pneumonia or skin infections, than the average person. This increased susceptibility to infections is attributed to the low white blood counts that are characteristic of Felty's syndrome. Ulcers in the skin over the legs can complicate Felty's syndrome.

How do doctors diagnose Felty's syndrome?

There is no single test for Felty's syndrome. Physicians diagnose Felty's syndrome based on the presence of rheumatoid arthritis, an enlarged spleen (splenomegaly), and an abnormally low white blood cell count. Most patients do have rheumatoid arthritis antibodies (rheumatoid factor) in the blood and are referred to as having seropositive rheumatoid arthritis.

What specialists treat Felty's syndrome?

Felty's syndrome is treated by internists, rheumatologists, and hematologists.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/17/2016

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