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Arthritis Symptoms And Their Causes
Arthritis symptoms and causes aren't self-evident. Many people have misconceptions about this common health condition. And there's a lot of old wives tales surrounding this joint condition and it's precisely why it is so important to understand.
By: Kearney Medical Group
What is Arthritis?
Arthritis is simply swelling and/or tenderness that occurs in one or more joints in the body. Unfortunately, these symptoms worsen over time as the body ages. There are different types of arthritis, but the two most common are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Both of which are treatable. However, there's no cure for arthritis, although there are ways to relieve the symptoms in order to go about day-to-day life. Of course, the amount of relief will depend on the type of arthritis and its level of severity.
Osteoarthritis is the breakdown of cartilage, which is the hard, slippery tissue that covers the ends of bones, where joints are formed in the body. Meanwhile, rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease, meaning the body's own immune system actually attacks the joints, which starts in the lining of said joints. Additionally, when uric acid crystals form because there's too much uric acid content in the blood, gout is often a result. Also, there are underlying medical conditions that can cause various types of arthritis, such as psoriasis or lupus.
Arthritis is generally characterized by pain in the joints. But, people who suffer from this condition may also experience stiffness, swelling, redness, and a decrease in their range of motion. While some people with arthritis may suffer from one or more of these symptoms, not everyone will experience them all or even to the same degree. So, it's very important to know precisely what type of arthritis it is and where it's most pronounced.
Treating arthritis isn't difficult, though as mentioned above, there is no cure. Although arthritis can be managed by prescription medication, including painkillers, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, counterirritants, disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs, and others. Doctors might also recommend physical therapy or even surgery.
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