• 01 AUG 17
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    Difference between various types of arthritis

    Difference between various types of arthritis

    Difference between various types of arthritis

    Although there are over 100 types of arthritis as it is related mainly to joint pain and inflammation. Generally, main three types of arthritis are there. These are listed as below:

    • Osteoarthritis
    • Rheumatoid arthritis
    • Gout

    These different types of arthritis cause different types of pain. The basic difference between three of them is described as below:



    • Osteoarthritis: Type of degenerative joint disease characterized by the breakdown of joint cartilage and underlying bones. This is the most chronic condition of the joints.
    • Rheumatoid arthritis: the Autoimmune disease characterized by primarily affecting the joints causing inflammation and pain in the joints.
    • Gout: the Inflammatory condition characterized by swelling, redness, pain, and tenderness of joints due to increases in levels of uric acid in the body.



    • Osteoarthritis: Hands, hips, knees, wrist, back, neck.
    • Rheumatoid arthritis:   Joints of hands, neck, shoulder, ankles, wrists, hands and joints at the base of toe.
    • Gout: Joints of toe, Ankles, heels, elbow, wrist, fingers.



    • Osteoarthritis: Joint pain and morning stiffness, decreased the range of motion, weakness or numbness of the arms and legs, loss of ability.
    • Rheumatoid arthritis: Inflammation, tenderness, and stiffness of joints fever, weight loss, loss of appetite.  
    • Gout: Tender, red, hot and swollen joint, fatigue, joint pain, fever, increase in the level of uric acid which may result in stone formation.



    • Osteoarthritis: Hereditary factors, genetic factors, wear and tear of joints, changes in sex hormones mainly in woman, incorrect posture, obesity.
    • Rheumatoid arthritis: Environmental factors, genetic factors, bacterial infection, smoking.
    • Gout: Mainly occurs due to increase in uric acid level of the body.



    • Osteoarthritis: More women are prone to this disease than man. Can occur at any age but mainly starts between 20 and 50. It can occur at the young age also.
    • Rheumatoid arthritis:   Onset starts between ages 30 and 60. Women are prone three to five times more than man. This can occur in children as well.
    • Gout: Mainly found in man than women between the age group of 40 to 50. Rarely found in children and young adult.



    • Osteoarthritis: Usually diagnosed on the basis of symptoms. Further to ensure it can be diagnosed by X-ray analysis. In x-ray following changes can be seen such as:
    1. Joint space narrowing
    2. Increase in bone formation around joints
    3. Cyst formation
    4. Osteophytes
    • Rheumatoid arthritis: Diagnosis is done on the basis of symptoms. Blood tests and medical imagings are done to verify the disease. Techniques such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), ultrasound, ultrasonography are also used. Inflammation of synovial membrane is detected by these tests. Blood test to check rheumatoid factor (RF) and anti-citrullinated protein antibodies is done.
    • Gout: Synovial fluid analysis and blood tests are done to diagnose gout. Identification of monosodium urate crystals is done. Needle shaped fragments are observed. Blood tests are done to diagnose hyperuricemia which is the primary feature of gout.



    • Osteoarthritis: Lifestyle modification and medications are beneficial.
    1. Lifestyle: Weight loss and regular exercise are recommended.
    2. Medications: Acetaminophen is used for pain management. NSAIDs such as naproxen, diclofenac. Opoids such as tramadol are recommended in case of severe pain.
    • Rheumatoid arthritis: There is no cure for RA but it can be managed with some changes in lifestyle and use of proper medications.
    1. Lifestyle: Regular exercise is beneficial. Physiotherapy also helps.
    2. Medications: Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) such as methotrexate, sulfasalazine, hydrochlorequine and analgesics may be used to help manage pain.
    • Gout: Lifestyle changes and use of medications can help.
    1. Lifestyle: Weight loss, not drinking alcohol, intake of vitamin c
    2. Medications: NSAIDS helps to recover. Use of allopurinol is recommended. Steroids are also effective. Colchicines are recommended for those are unable to tolerate NSAIDS.

    Many other types are also there which vary from one another to some extent. The study about arthritis and its types is very vast. These can be managed and prevented if diagnosed at early stage.

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