Arthritis is commonly thought of as a natural condition of aging, but that’s not always the case. Sufferers of arthritis include men, women, children, and adults. Approximately 350 million people worldwide have arthritis and nearly 40 million people in the United States are affected, including over a quarter million children!
Arthritis is an inflammation of one or more joints with symptoms that can include pain and limited function of the affected joints. Stiffness, swelling, redness, warmth, and tenderness can all be present.
There are more than 100 different forms of arthritis and related diseases but the most common types are listed here:
Caused by wear and tear over the years, osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis. This type is most common in older people, although it can affect adults at any age. More than 30 million men and women in the U.S. have osteoarthritis. Though it isn’t clear why women are more likely to develop osteoarthritis than men.
Unlike osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis affects the lining of the joints. This type of arthritis is classified as an autoimmune disease because the joints are attacked by the immune system as if they were foreign tissues. This disease causes joints to become painful, swollen, and warm to the touch. In some people, the condition can cause damage to the skin, eyes, lungs, heart and blood vessels. Although any age and gender can be affected by rheumatoid arthritis, it is most common in middle-aged women.
This form of arthritis affects many people with a similarly titled condition: psoriasis. Psoriasis is a condition characterized by red, dry patches on the skin. Even though joint problems can sometimes occur before the red patches appear, most people develop psoriasis first before being diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis. With most of the same symptoms as rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis is also likely to cause swollen fingers and toes, foot pain and lower back pain. Similar to osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, people of any age can develop psoriatic arthritis, but it usually affects people between the ages of 30 and 50. Interestingly, almost 40% of people with this condition have a family history of skin or joint disease.
In addition to the symptoms of the more common types of arthritis listed above, it’s important not to delay treatment to avoid any permanent joint damage. Take note if you experience difficulty moving or joint or pain while engaging in normal daily activities. Acknowledge any swelling, stiffness, tenderness, and warmth in the joints. An appointment with a doctor should be made promptly if joint symptoms have lasted for three or more days or if several episodes of joint symptoms occur within a month. If arthritis is the cause, a doctor will need to identify the correct type so the appropriate treatment and management plan can be put into action. Getting treatment quickly can help prevent other serious health problems and preserve joint function. If you think you have arthritis contact CORE Orthopedics and Sports Medicine at (847) 690-1776.
Elk Grove Village
555 Biesterfield Road Elk Grove Village, Illinois 60007-3306 Phone : (847) 690-1776