• 24 JUL 17
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    Types of Arthritis: Know the difference

    Types of Arthritis: Know the difference

    Arthritis is an old-age disease. The word ‘arthritis’ is an umbrella term that refers to over 200 diseases, all involving the inflammation of the joints. Though the cause of arthritis is unknown, we have a list of probable causes or risk factors for each of the seven major types of arthritis. The doctors prescribe treatment as per specific type for which you can buy medicines online also these days. The important aspect is that we can only treat the pain and not cure arthritis. The different arthritis types are categorised according to the musculoskeletal conditions. The word ‘arthritis’ means ‘joint inflammation,’ but the inflammation may affect the surrounding tendons and ligaments. This condition is known as enthesitis.  


    • Inflammatory arthritis

    We see damaging inflammation in this type of arthritis. Normally, we have inflammation as a part of the healing process. But here the inflammation causes pain and destroys tissue. This results in swelling, stiffness, and pain. One might see the inflammatory arthritis in more than one joint. The damage affects the bone and the surface of the joints.

    Some examples of inflammatory arthritis include ankylosing spondylitis, rheumatoid arthritis, arthritis linked to psoriasis or colitis, and reactive arthritis.

    • Muscular pain associated with soft tissue

    This pain does not occur in the bone but in the soft tissue. This happens either due to overuse or injury. The pain occurs from the muscles and soft tissues supporting the joint. If the pain becomes widespread and is linked to other symptoms, then the condition is termed as fibromyalgia.

    People afflicted by fibromyalgia show higher pain perception and react strongly to things that others would not even notice. Repetitive injuries, genetic disposition, and stressful events are triggers for the disease.

    One example of this is tennis elbow.

    • Connective tissue disease

    The tissues that link together or separate organs and body tissues include tendon, cartilage, and ligament. When one has connective tissue disease, one experiences pain. The inflammation might occur in tissues such as the skin, kidneys, lungs, and muscle.

    Examples of connective tissue disease include Scleroderma, Systemic Lupus Erythematosus, and Dermatomyositis.

    Scleroderma happens due to a build-up of collagen in the skin. We see a scar-like build-up in the skin and damages the walls of small arteries.

    SLE is an autoimmune disease where the immune system produces antibodies to normal healthy body cells. This leads to inflammation and damage to tissue. It normally affects joints, brain, kidneys, body tissues, skin, lungs, and blood vessels. Hormones, environment, and hormones are thought to be the cause.


    • Degenerative arthritis


    Also known as mechanical arthritis, this type of arthritis affects the cartilage that covers the ends of the bone. The cartilage provides the needed lubrication for the smooth working of the joint. When degenerative arthritis sets in, the cartilage becomes thin and rough. In an effort to restore stability, the body tries to remodel the bone. This results in undesirable bony projections or make the joint misshapen. Osteoarthritis is the term we use to refer to this condition.

    The occurrence of osteoarthritis is usually preceded by a fracture to the bone or inflammation to the joint. All parts of the joint including bone, ligament, joint lining, and cartilage are destroyed. This makes the joint very stiff and causes pain.


    • Back pain


    The usual causes for back pain is due to problems with ligaments, nerves, discs, muscles, joints, or bone. It may happen due to problems with organs and even be a referred pain. This means that the person gets a sensation of pain in the back due to problems at other places in the body.

    Specific examples of back pain include osteoarthritis. This ailment is called spondylosis when it occurs in the spine. Another example includes the slipped disc. In such cases, the doctor may not be able to identify the specific cause of the pain. In such cases, they refer to it as non-specific pain.


    • Infectious arthritis


    When a bacterium, fungus, or virus enters the joint, it can lead to inflammation. These kinds of organisms include Salmonella and Shigella, medical conditions such as Hepatitis C, Chlamydia, and gonorrhoea.

    If action is taken fast and the infection is removed through the use of antibiotics or other medication, there is no danger. If this is not done, then the arthritis could become chronic and the joint damage will become irreversible.

    Also known as septic arthritis, the most commonly affected joint are the hips and the knees. This can occur at any age. Artificial joint implants, joint injuries, and presence of bacteria in the blood increases the chances of septic arthritis.


    • Metabolic arthritis


    When the body breaks down purines, it creates uric acid. Uric acid build-up can result in crystals with needle shape in the joints. This results in gout attack. Gout can be a periodic occurrence or chronic if the uric acid is not reduced.

    Gout usually occurs in the big toe and the hands, the places where the temperature is lower. The common manifestation of gout is a red, hot, swollen joint with severe pain. The contributing factors include alcohol, hypertension, poor kidney function, and diet rich in meat and seafood.  

    If you are experiencing any kind of joint pain continually, you should consult a doctor without any delay. You can even consult doctors and buy medicines online through online pharmacy India portals these days. By timely consultation, you can minimize the damage to the joint and improve the quality of life.

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