Arthritis: Types, Therapy, Pain Control
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Arthritis: Types, Therapy, Pain Control

Arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disease characterized by swelling and inflammation of the body tissue. The term is derived from the ancient Greek – “arthorn” which means joint and “itis” meaning inflammation. There are over a hundred different types of arthritis. The most common types of arthritis are rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and osteoarthritis (OA). Other familiar types are gout, pseudo-gout, fibromyalgia and psoriatic arthritis. A risk of developing particular inflammatory disease is based on the genetic component.

Arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disease characterized by swelling and inflammation of the body tissue. The term is derived from the ancient Greek – “arthorn” which means joint and “itis” meaning inflammation. There are over a hundred different types of arthritis. The most common types of arthritis are rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and osteoarthritis (OA). Other familiar types are gout, pseudo-gout, fibromyalgia and psoriatic arthritis. A risk of developing particular inflammatory disease is based on the genetic component.

• The rheumatoid arthritis is a type of inflammatory arthritis characterized by symptoms like joint deformation, swelling, stiffness, low-grade fever, anemia and nodules under the skin. It is caused when immune system starts to attack synovial membrane that lines the joints. The most of damage RA usually does in the first 12 months. Early diagnosis and aggressive therapy are critical for this type.

• The osteoarthritis primarily affects the joints, hips, spine, knees, feet and other weight-bearing areas. It is also known as degenerative joint arthritis. Treatment of this type of arthritis usually involves physical therapy and exercise in combination with analgesics. The worst case scenario is joint replacement surgery.

• The gout is a form of arthritis caused by deposition of mono-sodium urate crystals in body tissue and especially in joints. Symptoms of this disease are inflammation, swelling and pain in joints. Gout usually first targets the joints of a big toe. In the worst case it can spread on kidneys and urinary tract if not treated.

• Fibromyalgia is a soft tissue type of arthritis caused by neurotransmitter defection in the brain. Patients affected by fibromyalgia may experience bizarre symptoms like loss of memory and cognitive dysfunction. The psoriatic arthritis may be very dangerous inflammatory type of arthritis that is often accompanied with psoriasis.

• Psoriasis is chronic autoimmune skin disease characterized with red and white hues of scaly patches. It is very important that these types of arthritis are early diagnosed and promptly treated.

Patients suffering from one of the chronic inflammatory diseases usually tolerate much persistent pain. Besides the medication therapy they have to do physical therapy and learn about the pain management. Except from pain, digestive troubles, fatigue and other symptoms caused by chronic inflammation there can be side-effects of the medications. In the recent studies of intravenous therapy, research teams at Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City have discovered that intravenous immune globulin (IVIG) manages to block inflammatory factors. The IVIG can be used as the treatment in patients suffering from chronic inflammatory disease by injections instead of infusions.

The severe cases of arthritis can sometimes lead to depression at patients. The arthritis pain management can provide people a chance to perform their lifestyle activities, despite to their illness. The researchers at Duke University have discovered that arthritis pain management skills may help people to improve their pain control and mental health. The pain control therapy includes drugs like acetaminophen, NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) and joint injections. If medications cannot control pain and slow down the arthritis progression patients are sent to surgery. Common surgery procedures are arthroscopy and joint replacement.

Because of the big psychological impact on mental health of the patient provoked by arthritis, there is a big interest for learning arthritis pain management. Recent studies showed that majority of the people suffering from the arthritis, which have received expert psychological help for the pain management, have reported much lower pain than people that did not receive any.

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Comments (3)

Very informative article.

WOW, I did not know that psoriasis was a form of arthritis. A very well written and interesting article.

Quite a comprehensive discussion about arthritis. Very clear and easy to understand.

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