Arthritis

Arthritis and Some Conditions Related to It

Arthritis, as most medical dictionary and books defines it, is a group of conditions which is characterized by inflammation of one or more joints. It is mostly manifested by pain, swelling, stiffness that usually occurs in the morning and limitation of joint movements. Other forms of arthritis includes osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, septic arthritis and almost one hundred more conditions.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis is a systematic, long term disease that affects the joint and possibly affects other organs. Its cause is still unknown but is believed to be an autoimmune disease. Autoimmune disease means that the body’s immune system confuses healthy tissues to be foreign thus the body attacks itself. It affects women more often than men. Joints of the wrists, fingers, knees, feet and ankles are most commonly affected by rheumatoid arthritis. Non-modifiable factors that affect the severity of the illness are hormones, genes and infection. People having this kind of disease usually have low fever, swollen glands. They also lose their appetite, has a feeling of body weakness and fatigue. Another symptom is joint pain and morning stiffness which usually lasts for more than one hour. Chest pain when breathing, eye burning and itching and nodules under the skin are also part of the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis.

Psoriatic Arthritis

This condition is usually associated with psoriasis, a condition that causes red patches on the skin. Psoriatic arthritis’ cause is still unknown but it is considered that genes play a major role in the development of this condition. Symptoms are somehow similar to arthritis but the most affected part of the body is the end of the fingers or toes. If severe, the disease may also affect many joints and even the spine.

Osteoarthritis

The most common among the joint disorders is called the osteoarthritis. It is caused by a condition known as the “wear and tear” in a joint. This condition happens when the firm, rubbery tissue that cushions the bones which is known as the cartilage break down and wear causing the bones to rub together thus producing the common signs and symptoms of arthritis.

If the signs and symptoms of these following conditions manifest better go to your doctor and have them checked. A medical history will be taken from you, since everything about your past health, family health and lifestyle may contribute to the disease. Physical examination and other tests like joint x-ray and blood test may also be done to confirm the condition that you might have. Treatment, on the other hand, depends on the cause of the arthritis and also depends on the affected part. Another factor that will be considered for the treatment would be the age and the occupation of the patient. Most of the treatment focuses on reducing pain and discomfort rather than eliminating the cause.


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