We describe a classification system for a novel imaging method for arthritic finger joints. The basis of this system is a laser imaging technique which is sensitive to the optical characteristics of finger joint tissue. From the laser images acquired at baseline and follow-up, finger joints can automatically be classified according to whether the inflammatory status has improved or worsened. To perform the classification task, various linear and kernel-based systems were implemented and their performances were compared. Based on the results presented in this paper, we conclude that the laser-based imaging permits a reliable classification of pathological finger joints, making it a sensitive method for detecting arthritic changes.