Here, we'll look more closely at several arthritis types and conditions that most people generally suffer from. We'll discuss the most common body parts that are usually affected, together with their most common causes.
As we all know, the generally accepted understanding of arthritis typically involves any alteration of an otherwise smooth, healthy joint surface. We also know that these alterations can come in various levels of severity, from the vague mild condition that is typically described as an ache or soreness, to the extremely severe, which can significantly limit even the most basic of daily activities.
Arthritis can be caused by many things. For example the term osteoarthritis refers to the degenerative condition caused by such things as: wear and tear, aging, overuse and to some extent, hereditary influences. It is widely considered to be the "garden variety" of the family of degenerative diseases and conditions.
Another type is one that can be caused by injury. This is known as Post-Traumatic Arthritis. This type of arthritis typically occurs when the smooth, plush joint cartilage surfaces become damaged from injuries such as fractures, dislocations, severe ligament injuries, loose bodies floatinig in the joint, gout, blunt trauma from a fall or a penetrating injury.
Additionally, arthritis can also develop as a result of infection . This type is called "Septic Arthritis". This typically involves the presence of microorganisms within the joint, and frequently involves the presence of pus. It is the pus, if left untreated in the joint and is under pressure, that will destroy the joint surfaces.
Septic arthritis can result from "seeding" of bacteria in the area of the joint, or even from remote locations, as is frequently seen in post-dental-work infections, skin abrasions, or systemic infections such as the flu.
Another form of arthritis that can be rather aggressive, and also is pretty much in a class of its own, is called Rheumatoid Arthritis. This is frequently referred to as an "auto-immune" disease, in which the body literally attacks itself.. This is discussed in greater detail in its own section.
Yet another cause of arthritis in joints that has auto-immune disease implications is called Psoriasis. The resultant arthritic condition is called
As you can see, when you talk about arthritis types, it's important to know what type you need to learn about. All the above-mentioned arthritis types can occur in virtually any joint, given the right circumstances. Each type requires unique diagnostic measures as well as treatment options.
Arthritis can be diagnosed by a variety of different tests, such as x-ray, blood work, physical examination and, in cases of suspected septic arthritis, aspiration and cultures of the joint fluid / pus.
In general, the treatment of arthritis is geared toward the reduction of symptoms and the slowing of the disease process. This can be a daunting task in cases of psoriatic and rheumatoid arthritis, and septic arthritis can mean a lengthy treatment course of IV antibiotics and possibly numerous surgeries to open the joint to flush and clean it.
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