Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Arthritis – Causes, Diagnose Short & Long Term Treatments

Arthritis, along with other rheumatic conditions, are common conditions that cause swelling, pain, and restricted movement. They can affect the joints and connective tissue of the body. Millions of Americans have arthritis.

Women are more likely to have arthritis and other rheumatic conditions than men. They are often associated with old age. They can affect anyone of any age.

What Causes Arthritis?

It depends on what type of arthritis it is. Osteoarthritis can be caused by joint wear over time or from overuse. The body’s immune system attacks the body’s tissues, which can lead to rheumatoid and lupus as well as scleroderma. Gout is caused when crystals build up in the joints. Genetics can play a role in some forms of arthritis. Ankylosing spondylitis is more common in those who have the genetic marker HLA–B27. The cause of other forms arthritis is unknown.

What Are The Signs and Symptoms of Arthritis?

Individual symptoms can vary. These are the most common symptoms:

  • A persistent or recurring pain in one or more joints.
  • Warmth and redness in one or more joints
  • Inflammation in one or more joints
  • Stiffness in one or more joints
  • Problems with moving one or more joints in a regular way

These symptoms may look similar to other conditions. For a diagnosis, always consult your healthcare provider.

What is the best way to diagnose arthritis?

Your healthcare provider will review your medical history and perform a physical exam. You may also need to have tests done. These tests include blood tests like:

  • Antinuclear antibody test (ANA). This test checks for antibodies in blood.
  • Completion of blood count (CBC). This test checks whether your platelet, white blood cell, or red blood cell levels are normal.
  • Creatinine. This test is used to detect kidney disease.
  • Sedimentation rate. This test can detect inflammation.
  • Hematocrit. This test measures the amount of red blood cells.

CCP (cyclic citrullinated progesterone) and RF (rheumatoid factors) are both available for antibody testing. These can help diagnose rheumatoid arthritis. They can also determine how severe the condition is.

The white blood cell count. This test measures the amount of white blood cells present in your blood.

Uric acid. This is used to diagnose gout.

You may also need to take other tests, such as:

  • Joint aspiration (arthrocentesis). A small amount of synovial fluid from a joint is taken. It is tested for crystals, bacteria, and viruses.
  • X-rays and other imaging tests. These tests can show how badly damaged a joint may be.
  • Urine test. This test checks for protein and other types of blood cells.
  • HLA tissue typing. This is used to identify genetic markers for ankylosing Spondylitis.
  • Skin biopsy. The microscope is used to examine tiny tissue samples. This test can help diagnose skin-related arthritis, such as Lupus or Psoriatic.
  • Muscle biopsy. The microscope is used to examine tiny tissue samples. This test can diagnose muscle conditions.

What is The Best Way to Treat Arthritis?

Your symptoms, age, and general health will all play a role in your treatment. The severity of your arthritis and the type you have will also play a role in how treatment is done. Each person’s health care provider will create a treatment plan that is specific to them.

There is no cure. Treatments are often designed to reduce pain and inflammation and improve joint function. Many treatment plans include both short-term as well as long-term options.

These are short-term treatments:

  • Medication. Pain relievers like acetaminophen or aspirin may be used to temporarily ease inflammation and pain.
  • Both heat and cold. You can ease pain by applying moist heat (warm shower or bath) or dry heat to the joint. Cold (ice wrapped in a towel and applied to the joint) may help reduce pain and swelling.
  • Joint immobilization. A brace or splint can be used to help the joint relax and prevent further injury.
  • Massage. Massage of the painful muscles can increase blood flow and warmth.
  • Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS). A TENS device may reduce pain. The device sends gentle, electrical pulses to the nerve endings of the painful area. This reduces pain signals to the brain, and alters pain perception.
  • Acupuncture. This involves the use of fine needles that are inserted into specific areas in the body. This may trigger the release of pain-relieving natural chemicals from the nervous system. A licensed health care provider will perform the procedure.

These are long-term treatments:

  • DMARDs (disease-modifying antirheumatic medications) are available. These prescription medications can slow down the progression of the disease and address any immune system issues. These medications include methotrexate and hydroxychloroquine.
  • Corticosteroids. Corticosteroids decrease inflammation and swelling. Prednisone can be taken either orally or intramuscularly.
  • Hyaluronic acid treatment. This joint fluid appears to be able to dissolve in osteoarthritis patients. To relieve symptoms, it can be injected into the knee joint.
  • Surgery. There are many kinds of surgery depending on the condition of the affected joints. There are three options for joint replacement: arthroscopy (fusion), arthroscopy (fusion), and fusion. The full recovery process after surgery can take up to six months. Rehabilitation after surgery is an integral part of the treatment.

The team of health care professionals who can treat arthritis may include:

  • Orthopedist/orthopedic surgeon
  • Physiatrist
  • Vocational therapist
  • Psychologist or psychiatrist
  • Rheumatologist
  • Occupational therapist
  • Primary care doctor (family medicine, internal medicine)
  • Therapist for the body
  • Dietitian
  • Rehabilitation nurse
  • Social worker
  • Recreational therapist

When do I need to call my healthcare provider

If your symptoms worsen or you develop new symptoms, call your provider immediately.

Palak Patel
Palak Patelhttps://medicalreview.us
Palak Patel is an internet marketing & health SEO consultant at Medical Review USA. Palak Patel has been an expert in the health and fitness industry for years now. I'm writing to keep people informed about dental treatments, eye, plastic surgery, gastroenterology, dermatology, orthopedics, psychiatry.

This information should not be used as a substitute to professional medical care. Follow the instructions of your healthcare professional.

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