Inflammatory Arthritis

Inflammatory arthritis is also known as systemic inflammatory disorder or rheumatoid arthritis. Usually this affects the synovial section of your joints, though it can extend to your vital organs and tissues. Excessive amounts of fluid can build up around the tissues, organs or joints, slowly destroying joint related tissues, including cartilage. You may also experience lung, sclera, pleura and pericardium inflammation, as well as the build up of nodules under your skin. As such this condition is related to your immune system.

Approximately one percent of the world’s people get this type of arthritis, usually with women being 3 times more likely to get it than men. Most people get it between ages forty and fifty, though it can happen to you at any age. The worst part is that it can be very painful and disabling, leading to potential minimization or even complete loss of your mobility and your ability to function normally. However, only a doctor can diagnose it and you will undergo x-rays, a physical exam and be assessed for varied symptoms and signs.

Treatments for inflammatory arthritis range from medicines to therapies. Depending on the nature of the destruction or damage to your joints, your doctor may choose one or more of the following options:

  • Anti-rheumatic drugs

  • Steroids

  • Anti-inflammatory drugs

  • Pain killers

  • Dietary therapies

  • Occupational therapies

  • Orthoses

  • Physical therapies

Tests may involve x-rays, ultrasounds, MRIs, and a barrage of blood tests. These blood tests check for specific antibodies, as well as other related diseases and conditions that may be the root cause versus arthritis, including hepatitis C, Sjogren’s syndrome, and lupus.

As there is no cure for inflammatory arthritis, the treatments your doctor will give you usually help in modifying how the disease is going and getting you some relief from your symptoms. Most often catching the disease earlier is best because the damage can be prevented and ensure that your mobility is not greatly affected. If it is caught in the later stages, the goal is to regain some of your normal mobility and to control severe symptoms.

 


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