Arthritis is a form of rheumatoid arthritis and affects the joints of the arms, legs, fingers, hands, shoulders, spine, and even the hips. For many people, the pain starts gradually and is quite often accompanied by stiffness and limited mobility. Arthritis can be very painful and affect the patient’s quality of life significantly.
There are many types of arthritis. For instance, one common type is osteoarthritis, also known as Osteoarthritis, where there is degeneration of the joints causing inflammation and pain. Other forms of arthritis include rheumatoid arthritis and others, which are not as common but still affect many people.
The symptoms of Arthritis vary between patients, but one common symptom is a dull ache in the joint. It may also be associated with general discomfort in the area around the joint. Any joint problems are likely to cause discomfort and any amount of pain can be debilitating.
With Arthritis, the diagnosis is made based on a series of tests and observations. The doctor will do various scans, X-rays and other tests to diagnose the condition. These include doing magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans, MRIs, which are computerized x-rays; palpation, which is the touch of the hand at certain areas of the joint; palpation of the joints; temperature, pressure, and blood tests; physical examination and a bone scan.
Arthritis is usually diagnosed in its early stages, meaning the doctor will be able to determine if the patient has any kind of arthritis. Some symptoms include severe pain, stiffness, and restricted range of motion.
If you have milder cases of Arthritis or arthritis, then there are various treatments available such as anti-inflammatory drugs, glucocorticoids, analgesics, anti-inflammatories, antidepressants, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). In some cases, these drugs can be used to manage the pain.
Topical corticosteroids, including Humira, Aranesp, Joylent, and Verenia are commonly used for treating arthritis. NSAIDs like Indocin, Advil, Motrin, Naproxen, Aleve, and Naprosyn are usually prescribed for milder cases of arthritis, particularly those who are unable to tolerate a steroid-based medication.
The most commonly prescribed anti-inflammatory is an oral steroid medication, such as Prednisone. These are used in combination with NSAIDs such as Indocin, Cortaid, Naproxen, Naprosyn, and Motrin, which are applied topically or taken orally.
Different treatments are required for each patient because each case is different. The main goal of treatment is to improve the patient’s quality of life. Treatment can either be based on natural remedies or medicinal drugs that can help control or prevent the onset of joint pain, inflammation, or stiffness.
Alternative treatments like herbal medications and dietary changes are often helpful. For example, vitamin E, A, C, and D are natural antioxidants that help prevent joint inflammation. Good levels of zinc and vitamin C are also helpful for reducing pain and inflammation.
Other options include acupuncture, massage therapy, osteopathic manipulation, herbal supplements, and vitamin supplements. More information on the different treatments for arthritis is available through your doctor or pharmacist.