Common Arthritis Pain Conditions

Hip Arthritis?  Osteoarthritis?

Arthritis is very common but is not well understood. Actually, “arthritis” is not a single disease; it is an informal way of referring to joint pain or joint disease. There are different types of arthritis and related conditions. People of all ages, sexes and races can and do have arthritis. It occurs more frequently as people get older.

Common arthritis joint symptoms include swelling, pain, stiffness and decreased range of motion. Symptoms may come and go. They can be mild, moderate or severe. They may stay about the same for years, but may progress or get worse over time. Severe arthritis can result in chronic pain, inability to do daily activities and make it difficult to walk or climb stairs. Arthritis can cause permanent joint changes, such as knobby finger joints.

Here are some of the most common arthritis conditions:

  • Degenerative Arthritis

Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis. When the cartilage – the slick, cushioning surface on the ends of bones – wears away, bone rubs against bone, causing pain, swelling and stiffness. Over time, joints can lose strength and pain may become chronic.

Osteoarthritis is common in the knees because the knees bear the weight of the body. Osteoarthritis of the knee is more common in older people, in women, and in people who have occupations that place increased stress on the knees. People who have certain diseases, bone deformities or a genetic predisposition are also at a higher risk. Obesity can also raise a person’s risk for osteoarthritis of the knee, because extra body weight increases stress on the knee joints.  Do you KNOW if you lose 10 lbs. your knee pain improves by up to 50%!

Knee Osteoarthritis Symptoms

Symptoms of osteoarthritis of the knee may include pain, swelling and stiffness of the joint. The knee may become weak, and it may lock or buckle when walking. A person with osteoarthritis may have trouble bending or straightening the knee. Standing or walking for long periods may worsen this pain.

Treatment for Osteoarthritis

Treatment options depend on the severity of the arthritis. In the early stages, the knee may be treated with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications, corticosteroid injections, and injections of medications that lubricate the joint. The physician may recommend physical therapy, a knee brace and weight loss to relieve stress on the joint. If these methods are not helpful and if the knee continues to deteriorate, surgery may be needed to repair the joint

  • Inflammatory Arthritis

A healthy immune system is protective. It generates internal inflammation to get rid of infection and prevent disease. But the immune system can go awry, mistakenly attacking the joints with uncontrolled inflammation, potentially causing joint erosion and may damage internal organs, eyes and other parts of the body. Rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis are examples of inflammatory arthritis. Researchers believe that a combination of genetics and environmental factors can trigger autoimmunity. Smoking is an example of an environmental risk factor that can trigger rheumatoid arthritis in people with certain genes.

Hip Arthritis is a condition that is an irritation of the hip joint that can cause inflammation, pain, and limited mobility.

Hip Arthritis Treatment 

The most preferable treatment is PRP, for the right candidate, or Prolotherapy.

Alternate treatment options include rest, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications, cortisone injections, disease modifying agents, antibiotics, and modification of daily activities. Severe cases may require surgery.

In some cases, a virus or bacteria may trigger an immune system response that attacks the joint in people with genetic predisposition. However, the exact cause of the condition is unknown. Other types of inflammatory arthritis include rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, and systemic lupus erythematosus.

Diagnosing Arthritis

Arthritis diagnosis often begins with a physical exam and may do blood tests and imaging scans to help determine the type of arthritis.

What Can Be Done About Arthritis?

There are many things that can be done to preserve joint function, mobility and quality of life. Learning about the disease and treatment options, making time for physical activity and maintaining a healthy weight are essential.