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Orthopaedics - Arthritis

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Orthopedic: Arthritis

Overview

Arthritis is a condition defined by swelling, pain, and tenderness of joints in the human body. It simply refers to inflammation of the joints. The condition may affect one or more joints. It is categorized into various types such as:

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis.

While these are the most commonly occurring forms of arthritis, the disease can be of several other types.

What are the Signs & Symptoms of Arthritis?

The signs & symptoms of arthritis are:

  • Pain in joints
  • Stiffness
  • Swelling
  • Decrease in range of motion
  • Redness of the skin around the affected joints
  • Fatigue

What Causes Arthritis?

Osteoarthritis is caused by wear and tear in the joints and tissues. An injury of infection in the joints can exacerbate the damage. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder. Therefore, it is caused when your body’s immune system attacks its own cells of the joint capsule that surrounds the joints. This causes swelling and redness while destroying the cartilage and bone within the joints.

What are the Risk Factors of Arthritis?

The risk factors of arthritis are:

  • Age: The risk of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis increases with age.
  • Gender: Women are more likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis as compared to men.
  • Obesity: Increased weight can cause stress on joints of the knees, hips, and spine. People with obesity are highly vulnerable to arthritis. 
  • Family history: If someone in your family, such as parents or siblings has arthritis, you are more likely to have a risk of developing arthritis.
  • History of Joint Injury: People who have a history of joint injury while playing a sport or exercise are at risk of developing arthritis in joints due to potential joint damage.

Are There Any Complications?

A severe form of arthritis particularly affects your hands or arms. Arthritis in the weight-bearing joints can cause difficulty in walking or sitting up straight. The joints may lose their alignment and cause severe pain. If left untreated, arthritis can cause permanent disability and loss of independence in daily activities.

When to See a Doctor?

If you have pain in or around your joints that do not go away after several days or weeks, you should see a doctor. To consult an orthopedic surgeon in Jaipur, request an appointment at Apollo Spectra Hospitals, Jaipur, Rajasthan. Call 18605002244 to book an appointment. Your doctor will find out the exact cause of your pain and find the right treatment options.

How is Arthritis Diagnosed?

An orthopedic surgeon is likely to provide appropriate medical assistance with your symptoms. Doctors perform a physical examination to assess the joints. Physical examination in arthritis involves an examination of fluids around the joints, swelling and redness in joints, limited range of motion, and severity of pain. Specific blood tests for rheumatoid factors and antibodies are common diagnostic tests. Imaging studies such as X-rays, CT scans, and MRIs are used to visualize your bones and cartilages.

How is Arthritis Treated?

The goal of treatment in arthritis is to reduce the intensity of pain and prevent your joints from worsening. Following are the various therapeutic methods:

  • Medications used to treat arthritis are pain relief drugs such as paracetamol, ibuprofen, and salicylates. Additionally, immunosuppressants are used to reduce inflammation and autoimmune actions. 
  • Non-medicated solutions used in the treatment of arthritis are heating pads and ice packs for pain relief. Creams and relief sprays containing menthol are popular counterirritants for instant pain relief.
  • Physiotherapy helps to strengthen the muscles around the joints and maintain joint function.
  • You may require surgery in severe cases if your joint has significantly been damaged. It replaces your joint with an artificial one. This is commonly known as knee or hip replacement surgery. To seek the right treatment, consult an orthopedic surgeon in Jaipur,

Request an appointment at Apollo Spectra Hospitals, Jaipur, Rajasthan.

Call 18605002244 to book an appointment.

How Can You Prevent Arthritis?

If you are at risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis or have joint-related issues, self-management is the key to preventing arthritis. 

  • Stay physically active
  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • Prevent unnecessary stress on joints.
  • Exercise regularly and balance your activity with rest.
  • Consume a balanced and healthful diet to prevent inflammation.

Recommended Lifestyle Modifications

If you are diagnosed with arthritis, consider the following lifestyle changes:

  • To reduce the risk of arthritis, consider weight-loss strategies and maintain a healthy weight.
  • Choose foods such as fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, and fish that are rich in antioxidants.
  • Regular exercise will keep your joints flexible.
  • Avoid overexertion and overuse of joints and prevent joint damage.
  • At-home exercises can be helpful in relieving pain and stiffness of joints.

Conclusion

Arthritis is a condition that damages the joints of your body. While there is no definite cure for the disease, you can seek treatment to reduce the severity of your symptoms. Additionally, you can make several lifestyle changes to help you manage your illness.

References

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/arthritis/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20350777 
https://www.healthline.com/health/arthritis#_noHeaderPrefixedContent 
https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/7621#_noHeaderPrefixedContent 

Can children get arthritis?

Yes, children can also develop arthritis. Childhood arthritis is medically known as juvenile idiopathic arthritis. Children may also experience similar symptoms with a risk of permanent damage to the affected joints.

What should I do if I think I have arthritis?

You are advised to consult an orthopedic surgeon if you have symptoms of arthritis such as pain, swelling, and stiffness of joints.

Can I exercise with arthritis? Will it damage my bones and joints?

Yes. Arthritis-friendly exercise is beneficial to stay physically active. Mild to moderate exercise can help relieve the pain and stiffness in joints. It will not cause any damage to your joints. Some physical activity is always better than none.

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