Anatomy books define joint as a structure in the human or animal body at which two parts of skeleton are fitted together. These are fulcrums that help in all bodily movements. Put under tremendous stress joints do get strained, inflamed, injured and what not. The diseased condition when joints get inflamed in one or more area of the body is called Arthritis. Medical books list more than 100 kinds of arthritis each one with a different cause and effect. The most common form of arthritis are osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis including the juvenile manifestation form, infectious arthritis and many more.
Who all in the radar?
Its observed and proved that people above 55 are troubled by arthritis. Also athletes and sports persons, body builders, wrestlers whose muscles, ligaments, cartilage and joints are succumbing to more strain can be affected by arthritis or one of its variants at an early age itself. It is also observed that women right at the age of 30 are under this villains radar.
A joint holds two bones together. The joint itself, the cavity and the synovial fluid that provides lubrication and nourishment to the bones cartilage. Any of these could wear away leading to joint pain symptoms. The most common causes are
- Inflammation in the joint due to injury
- Severe and strenuous work pattern
The most common osteoarthritis is caused due to cartilage damage caused natural breakdown that gets worsened. This is due to aging and lifestyle of the subject.Early diagnosis and treatment helps one to come out of the diseased condition soon.
- Wearing of Cartilage
- Lack of sufficient synovial fluid causing aberration and pain
Rheumatoid arthritis is caused when the cartilage and synovial fluid are affected. Unlike degenerative osteoarthritis, the inflammation is observed on both sides of the body and joint pain with swelling and fatigue. It is believed that external microbial organisms alters the immune system causing Rheumatoid arthritis. They may permanently affect the bone and cartilage inside the body. Children under age of 16 too can be victims and this diseased state is known as Juvenile Rheumatoid arthritis.
- Infectious arthritis is caused when the joints or ligaments have infections and this is accompanied by swelling, acute pain and fever in the patient. This condition needs immediate medical care
However there are rare cases where in arthritis can be caused due to
- Poor genital makeup where mutated genes can pre-record arthritis in human body
- Reactive arthritis where some infection causing bacteria or allergy can cause this problem
- Some auto immune diseases
Symptoms and prevention
Stiffness, fatigue, loss of grip, acute pain surrounding joints, discomfort to walk or even stand up are some symptoms that should not be ignored if one is above fifty years of age. Physical therapy or occupational therapy can bring relief in the initial stages. The orthopedic doctor is best in deciding what kind of treatment will help their patient. But as prevention is better than cure, one needs to follow a healthy diet, enough exercise daily to keep fit and fine and consult the specialist in case of slightest discomfort.