ARTHRITIS

ARTHRITIS:

Introduction:

  • Arthritis is a combination of disease which includes joint pain or joint disease. There are more than 100 types of arthritis and related condition.
  • People of all ages, sexes and races can have arthritis.
  • It is the leading cause of disability in America. More than 50 million adults and 300,000 children have same type of arthritis.
  • It is the most common among women and occurs most frequently as people gets older.
  • According to Center for disease control and prevention (CDC), 54.4 million adults in the U.S. have received a diagnosis of some form of arthritis. Out of these, 23.7 million people have their activity curtailed in some way by their condition.

                       

Definition:

  • It is an inflammation of the joints; it can affect one or multiple joints. The most common types of arthritis are Osteoarthritis (OA) and Rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
  • The word arthritis is used to describe pain, swelling and stiffness in a joint. A joint is a point which holds bones in place and allows them to move freely within bones.

Types of Arthritis:

There are following types of arthritis:

  1. Osteoarthritis:
  2. It is the most common form of arthritis.
  3. It can estimate around 8.75 million people in U.K.
  4. It starts with the roughening of cartilage; most prominent symptom of osteoarthritis.
  5. It is more common in women and usually affects people from the age of 45 onwards.
  6. The most affected parts in this type of arthritis are knees, hands, hips and back.
  7. Being overweight or taking painkillers like paracetamol or NSAIDS can stimulate osteoarthritis.
  8. Doing regular exercise will keep muscles around the joints strong and this will help to support and stabilize a joint affected by osteoarthritis.
  9. Degenerative Arthritis:
  10. It is the most common type of arthritis. When the cartilage- Stick, cushioning surface on the ends of bones- wears away, bone rubs against bones, causing pain, swelling and stiffness.
  11.  Over time, joints can lose strength and pain can become chronic.
  12.  Risk factor can include excess weight, family history, age and previous injury.
  13. Regular physical activity, using hot and cold therapy, maintaining healthy weight and strengthening the muscles around joint are its medications.
  14. Inflammatory Arthritis:
  15. It generates internal inflammation to get rid of infection and prevent disease; but the immune system goes away, mistakenly attacking the joints with uncontrolled inflammation.
  16. This type of arthritis potentially causes joint erosion.
  17. Inflammatory arthritis can potentially damage internal organs, eyes and other parts of the body.
  18. Examples of inflammatory arthritis are rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis.
  19. Researchers believe that a combination of genetics and environmental factors can trigger autoimmunity. Environmental risk factors like smoking can trigger rheumatoid arthritis.
  20. Rheumatoid Arthritis:
  21. It is a common form of inflammatory arthritis, autoimmune disease that causes pain and swelling of the joints.
  22. It is an autoimmune disorder in which immune system starts attacking its own healthy tissues.
  23. In RA, the immune system targets the lining of the joints, causing inflammation and joint damage.

                   

  1. Ankylosing spondylitis:
  2. It is a condition which mainly affects spine.
  3. The joints of the neck, back and pelvis become inflamed and causing pain and stiffness.
  4. The symptoms of this disease begin at the age of 15 and 45 years.
  5. Psoriatic Arthritis:
  6. It is an inflammation of the joints which causes pain, swelling and stiffness in the joints.
  7. This disease usually occur in those people who are suffering from the skin disease; psoriasis.

                         

  1. Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis: (JIA)
  2. JIA is the name given to a number of types of arthritis that occurs in children.
  3. JIA is an autoimmune condition in which body’s immune system starts mistakenly attacks healthy cells of the body.
  4. Anterior Knee pain:
  5. This pain occurs in the front part of the knee around the knee cap.
  6. It is more commonly occurs during the teenage years and affects more prominently the girls than boys.
  7. Spondyloarthritis:
  8. This is also known as Spondyloarthropathy or seronegative arthritis.
  9. It commonly affects spine.
  10. Scleroderma:
  11. It means hard spine; scleroderma affects the connective tissue of the body (tissues that hold together joints, muscles, blood vessels and internal organs).
  12. The symptoms of scleroderma vary greatly from person to person.
  13. This disease also depend on what parts of the body is involved.
  14. Fibromyalgia:
  15. It is marked by generalized pain and muscle stiffness, as well as extreme fatigue.
  16. It may range from mild to severe and may last for many years.
  17. Reactive Arthritis:
  18. It usually develops after an infection; often in the bowl or genital areas.
  19. The infection causes inflammation and usually affects immune system.

Causes of Arthritis:

  1. Reduction in the normal of amount of cartilage (a firm, flexible connective tissue which protects it by absorbing the pressure and shock) can cause of arthritis.
  2. Normal wear and tear causes osteoarthritis; an infection or injury can exacerbate this natural breakdown of cartilage tissue.
  3. If the person has family history of osteoarthritis then the risk may predominant.
  4. Autoimmune disorder affects the synovium; a soft tissue in joints that produces a fluid that nourishes the cartilage and lubricates the joint which may develop arthritis.
  5. Rheumatoid Arthritis is a disease of the synovium that will invade and destroy a joint; it can lead to the destruction of both bone and cartilage inside the joint.

Symptoms of Arthritis:

  1. Pain
  2. Swelling in joints
  3. Numbness and stiffness
  4. Person may feel Fatigue
  5. Difficulty in motion or limited motion
  6. Redness
  7. Deformity of joints

Diagnosis:

  1. Physical examination by the doctor: Physicianshave to perform some physical examination to examine the fluid around the joints. He examines the red or warm joints and checks the limited range of motion in the joints.
  2. Extracting and analyzing inflammation levels in blood and joint fluids. It can help doctor to determine the kind of arthritis.
  3. Blood test that check for specific types of antibody like anti-CCP (anti-cyclic citrullinated peptide), RF (Rheumatoid factor) and ANA (antinuclear antibody).
  4. Imaging scans such as X-rays, MRI and CT scans to produce an image of bones and cartilage.

Treatment:

The main goal of treatment is to reduce the amount of pain and prevent additional damage to the joints. There are following methods for this treatment:

  1. Heating Pads and Ice packs gives a soothing effect
  2. Mobility assistance devices like canes or walkers helps to take off pressure on sore joints.

Medications:

There are following medications are given to treat arthritis:

  1. Analgesics: Hydrocodone (Vicodine) or acetaminophen (Tylenol) is effective for pain management but do not help in decreasing inflammation.
  2. Non- steroidal anti- inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS): Ibuprofen (Advil) and salicylates help to control pain and inflammation. Salicylates can thin the blood, so they should use with the additional blood thinning medications.
  3. Menthol or capsalcin are the creams that block the transmission of pain signals from the joints.
  4. Immuno-suppressants like prednisone or cortisone helps in reducing inflammation.
  5. Rheumatoid Arthritis can also be treated through corticosteroids or disease modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDS), which suppress immune system.
  6. Surgery: Replacement of joints with an artificial one. Doctor may perform a joint fusion. In this procedure, the ends of bones are locked together until they heal and become one.
  7. Physical therapy: It involves exercises that help strengthen the muscles around the affected joint is a case component of arthritis treatment.

 

 

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