5 Common Types of Arthritis You Should Know About

5 Common Types of Arthritis You Should Know About

5 Common Types of Arthritis You Should Know About

Arthritis is a joint inflammatory condition that affects over 50 million adults and 300,000 children in the United States alone. Arthritis can cause a variety of symptoms and unpleasant complications. In some cases, it can affect other organs including your skin, eyes, heart, kidneys, and nerves. 

The cause and treatment options differ depending on the kind of arthritis. To find the best treatment and relieve the symptoms, it is important to know what type of arthritis you have.

Below are the 5 most common types of arthritis, their symptoms, and treatment options. 

1. Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis. It affects millions of people around the globe. This condition occurs when the cartilage that cushions your bones degenerates. Over time, bones start rubbing against each other producing symptoms like pain, tenderness, stiffness, limited range of motion, and bone spurs. Joint pain and stiffness can become so severe that it can cause depression and sleep problems, and even simple activities become challenging.

Treatment depends on the stage of the osteoarthritis but medication, physical therapy, and transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation are often used. If conservative arthritis treatment options don’t help, your doctor might recommend surgery. 

2. Rheumatoid arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that causes your immune system to attack healthy joint tissues. This leads to inflammation and painful swelling. As a result of RA, your joints may become tender and warm. As the disease progresses, inflammation can result in bone erosion and joint deformity. Uncontrolled inflammation can damage other parts of your body as well. 

RA treatment usually depends on the severity of the condition. The doctor may prescribe steroid or non-steroid antiinflammatory medications, DMARDs, and biologic agents. The treatment usually includes physical or occupational therapy. If medications cannot stop the progression of the disease, the doctor may recommend surgery.

3. Psoriatic arthritis

As the name states, psoriatic arthritis is a type of arthritis that affects people with psoriasis. Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease that causes your immune system to attack healthy skin cells, resulting in red patches of skin topped with gray scales. PA can affect any joint in your body. The symptoms of PA are generally similar to RA. However, PA may also cause swelling in the toes and fingers, lower back pain, nail changes, and eye inflammation. 

The treatment for PA is usually the same as for RA. It may include NSAIDs, conventional DMARDs or synthetic DMARDs, and biologic agents. If conservative treatment options fail to stop the progression of the disease, surgery may be recommended to replace the damaged joint. 

4. Ankylosing spondylitis

Ankylosing spondylitis is an inflammatory disease, another form of arthritis. Ankylosing spondylitis has no known cause, though genetic factors seem to play a role. This condition progresses gradually, making bones in your spine fuse. This reduces the mobility of your spine and may cause a hunched posture. The symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis include lower back stiffness, neck pain, and reduced mobility. 

Ankylosing spondylitis usually includes medications like NSAIDs, tumor necrosis factor blockers, or interleukin-17 inhibitors. Physical therapy is recommended to improve strength and flexibility. Surgery may be recommended if you experience severe pain or if the joints are damaged significantly. 

5. Gout

Gout is a common and complex type of arthritis that causes an accumulation of urate crystals in the joints. It causes sudden, intense bouts of pain, swelling, redness, and tenderness in one or more joints. In most cases, gout affects the big toe joint but it can occur in any joint. Gout attacks can be severe enough to wake you up in the middle of the night. 

The treatment for gout includes NSAIDs, colchicine, and corticosteroids. Medications that block uric acid production and improve uric acid removal can be prescribed to prevent gout complications. 

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Article Author Details

Amelia Grant

I am Amelia Grant, journalist, and blogger. I think that information is a great force that is able to change people’s lives for the better. That is why I feel a strong intention to share useful and important things about health self-care, wellness and other advice that may be helpful for people.