Sunday, June 30, 2013

Arthritis Inflammation Symptoms, Treatments

When you suffer from arthritis, you experience severe inflammation in your one or more joints. Injuries, fractures, dislocations and the resurfacing of old injuries are the factors that can lead to joint inflammation.

While injuries and infection may trigger inflammation, the most common cause is arthritis. There are hundred kinds of arthritis but not all types cause inflammation. The most common arthritis types associated with inflammation include:

Rheumatoid Arthritis
It is an autoimmune disease in which the body's immune system attacks the joints causing painful inflammation in joints. The most common symptoms are joint pain, swelling, stiffness, tiredness, depression, and anaemia. Some patients also develop flu-like symptoms, such as feeling ill, feeling hot and sweating.

Some less common symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis include inflammation in the eyes, rheumatoid nodules and weight loss. In rare cases inflammation may occur in other body parts, namely lungs and blood vessels and the membrane around your heart.

The initial treatment options available for rheumatoid arthritis are physical therapies and anti-rheumatic drugs- painkillers (analgesics), non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs) and steroids.

In cases where body joints give severe pain, stiffness and immobility replacement surgeries like knee replacement hip replacement may be needed.

Psoriatic Arthritis
This arthritic condition causes painful inflammation in and around body joints and tendons. Symptoms of this condition include inflammation in your spine (spondylitis) causing stiffness in back or neck, swelling in and around your fingers or toes (dactylitis), buttock pain, inflammation where tendons attach to bone (enthesitis) causing pain and swelling in your heels, knee, hip bones and chest.

NSAIDs and DMARDs are most often used to treat psoriatic arthritis. In very rare occasions, surgery is used to repair damaged tendon. The joint that has been long damaged by inflammation is best treated with joint replacement surgery.

Gouty Arthritis
Gout is considered as the most painful form of inflammatory arthritis. The symptoms of gout are caused by abnormally high level of uric acid that builds up and forms crystals in the joints, which can lead to recurring attacks of joint inflammation. Gout most commonly affects the small joint at the base of the big toe but it affects other joints as well, including the ankles, knees, fingers, wrists, and elbows.

Symptoms of gout usually include intensely painful and swollen joints, redness and warmth on the affected joint and red or purple skin around the joint.

Treating the gout usually involves either anti-inflammatory drugs or steroids that can help reduce the pain and inflammation of gout attacks. Some certain medications decrease the level of uric acid in the bloodstream. Many gout patients turn to natural methods to reduce the risk of future gout attacks. In order to prevent gout flares you should modify your diets- avoid overindulgence in meat, seafood and alcohol; and drink more water- consume beverages that contain more water. Losing weight, following a moderate exercise regimen and taking supplements can be of great help.

Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE)
Also referred to as Lupus, it is an autoimmune disease in which the body's natural defense system attacks healthy body cells and tissues. This inappropriate response of body's immune system causes inflammation which in turn leads to pain, swelling and tissue damage throughout the body.

Some lupus sufferers develop only mild symptoms, including tiredness, joint pain, swelling (arthritis) and fever. In some cases skin rash, hair loss and mouth sores can also occur. The times when symptoms get worse the patients may experience problems with the heart, kidneys, blood cells, lungs, or nervous system.

Lupus can be best treated by taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and applying medicated cream for rashes. Taking proper rest, avoiding the sun and regular exercise can help you cope with the condition.

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