Friday, January 27, 2023

How Is Rheumatoid Arthritis Different From Arthritis

Joint Pain: Where It Hurts Most

Rheumatoid Arthritis vs. Lupus | How They’re SIMILAR and DIFFERENT

RA It can affect the entire body or just specific joints, most commonly the hands, wrists, fingers, elbows, knees, feet, and hips. Sometimes what is noticed first is the stiffness in the morning. The synovium, or the lining of the joint, is most affected.

OA It affects only a particular joint, and the pain doesn’t go away without physical or medical therapy. The joint cartilage is what is worn away.

As OA progresses it can result in bony growths or spurs that can further compromise joints . Sometimes you can have joints that make noise that can be painful . It is also possible to get some radiating pain .

Distinct Symptoms Of Fibromyalgia

The symptoms of fibromyalgia resemble the symptoms of many other conditions. But the pain in fibromyalgia is widespread and tends to occur on specific tender points.

These points are located in symmetrical pairs on the:

  • back of the head
  • trouble with memory, often called fibro fog
  • headaches
  • sensitivity to temperature, loud noises, or bright lights
  • numbness or tingling

Doctors use different techniques to diagnose RA and fibromyalgia. In each case, youll want to give your doctor as much information as possible about your medical history and the symptoms youre experiencing.

Diagnosis Of Joint Pain Causes

RA Medical history, physical examination, imaging tests, and blood tests make up the process. The medical history is important because there can be a genetic component.

OA Medical history, physical examination, and imaging tests are used to determine diagnosis. Lab tests may also be done to rule out other forms of arthritis.

Recommended Reading: How To Deal With Arthritis

How Is Ra Treated

RA can be effectively treated and managed with medication and self-management strategies. Treatment for RA usually includes the use of medications that slow disease and prevent joint deformity, called disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs biological response modifiers are medications that are an effective second-line treatment. In addition to medications, people can manage their RA with self-management strategies proven to reduce pain and disability, allowing them to pursue the activities important to them. People with RA can relieve pain and improve joint function by learning to use five simple and effective arthritis management strategies.

Symptoms Of Oa And Ra

Rheumatoid arthritis hands.Different types of arthritis in ...

Because OA and RA are caused by different factors, they elicit different symptoms.

A person who has rheumatoid arthritis may experience fatigue, malaise, and depression, preceding other symptoms by weeks to months. These are common symptoms of systemic diseases, as critical body systems, like the respiratory and cardiovascular systems, are under attack. These systems have key responsibilities in the body, and any damage to these systems can throw neurological, physiological, and physical functions off track.

Other symptoms of RA include:

  • Low-grade fever
  • Morning stiffness of the joints
  • Swelling of the joints
  • Cracking and popping of the joints

Read Also: What Does Ra Pain Feel Like

Joint Pain Onset: What Did You Notice First

RA It may be first noticed as tenderness and pain. If it lasts more than six weeks then you definitely want to seek medical care. If you have sudden onset of pain, redness, and swelling, this should be addressed right away. Often, the small joints in the hands and feet are affected first and equally on both sides.

RA is an autoimmune disease with inflammation. Many people experience fatigue and low-grade fevers. At times the fatigue may be one of the first things that a patient notices, either before or along with the joint pain. Some of the symptoms can wax and wane, including flares.

OA Osteoarthritis was long believed to be caused by the wearing down of joints over time. But scientists now see it as a disease of the entire joint, involving the cartilage, joint lining , ligaments, and bone. OA is a common joint disease that affects from middle-aged to elderly people, women more than men. OA joint pain can build up gradually over time. However, it can become worse after use for example, after a hike.

Treatment Of Oa And Ra

How Osteoarthritis is Treated

Unfortunately, osteoarthritis cannot be reversed or treated. We offer various treatments and pain relievers to help patients with OA manage unpleasant symptoms.

  • Intra-articular injections: Injections of corticosteroids, hyaluronic acid, BOTOX® or platelet-rich plasma in the joints can help to relieve pain in the joints. These injections can provide the missing cushion or padding that the cartilage once provided before it degenerated.
  • Physical therapy: Because OA weakens the joints and muscles, physical therapy can help to strengthen the affected joints. Similarly, pain management classes can help patients to minimize the symptoms of OA.
  • Pain-relieving medications: Various medications can be taken to relieve the symptoms of OA, dull the pain and discomfort, and reduce swelling. These medications include Tylenol® and NSAIDs .

How Rheumatoid Arthritis is Treated

There is unfortunately no treatment to reverse rheumatoid arthritis either. We can provide various medications along with therapy to help patients manage the symptoms of RA.

  • Disease-modifying medications: Various medications, known as DMARDs , can be taken to either slow the progression of RA or stop the progression entirely. These treatments can save the joints from further damage.

Also Check: How To Deal With Arthritis

Difference Between Osteoarthritis And Rheumatoid Arthritis

There are several different types of arthritis. Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are two of the most common forms. Although the symptoms of these two types of arthritis can be similar, it’s very important to distinguish between them in order to determine the proper treatment.

At the University of Michigan Health System, our experienced rheumatologists will do appropriate tests to determine which type of arthritis you have. Then we will develop an effective treatment plan and will explain your options.

Osteoarthritis occurs when the smooth cartilage joint surface wears out. Osteoarthritis usually begins in an isolated joint.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease, which means that the immune system malfunctions and attacks the body instead of intruders. In this case, it attacks the synovial membrane that encases and protects the joints. Rheumatoid arthritis often targets several joints at one time. The symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis include:

  • the symmetrical nature of the disease ,
  • fever

Infectious And Reactive Arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis v osteoarthritis – the difference explained by an expert

Infectious arthritis is an infection in one of your joints that causes pain or swelling. The infection can be caused by bacteria, viruses, parasites, or fungi. It can start in another part of your body and spread to your joints. This kind of arthritis is often accompanied by a fever and chills.

Reactive arthritis can occur when an infection in one part of your body triggers immune system dysfunction and inflammation in a joint elsewhere in your body. The infection often occurs in your gastrointestinal tract, bladder, or sexual organs.

To diagnose these conditions, your doctor can order tests on samples of your blood, urine, and fluid from inside an affected joint.

The fingers are most commonly affected with psoriatic arthritis , but this painful condition affects other joints as well. Pink-colored fingers that appear sausage-like, and pitting of the fingernails, may also occur.

The disease may also progress to your spine, causing damage similar to that of ankylosing spondylitis.

If you have psoriasis, theres a chance you could also develop PsA.

Recommended Reading: Arthritis Skin Rash

What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Ra

With RA, there are times when symptoms get worse, known as flares, and times when symptoms get better, known as remission.

Signs and symptoms of RA include:

  • Pain or aching in more than one joint
  • Stiffness in more than one joint
  • Tenderness and swelling in more than one joint
  • The same symptoms on both sides of the body
  • Weight loss

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Both cause stiff, painful joints. Both are types of arthritis. Other than that,rheumatoid arthritis andosteoarthritis share little in common.

Their differences begin with what causes them. Osteoarthritis is more commonly occurs later in life, after years of mechanical wear and tear on the cartilage which lines and cushions your joints. Rheumatoid arthritis, which can occur at most any age, is anautoimmune disease. That is, your body’s immune system attacks your joints.

Dr. Michael Raab explains the differences of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Click play to watch the video or read video transcript.

What is arthritis?

Here are other important things to know about the key differences between osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Recommended Reading: How To Deal With Arthritis

Osteoarthritis Causes Symptoms And Risk Factors

The bones in the various joints throughout the body are lined with a layer of cartilage, which prevents friction and allows the bones to glide freely to facilitate the motions that allow us to bend the knees, raise our arms above our shoulders, and sit and stand without experiencing pain and stiffness. Over time, the cartilage can wear out, leaving the ends of the bones exposed, which can result in pain and permanent damage to the joint if left untreated.

Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis in Los Angeles. The most common symptoms are:

  • Pain, tenderness, and stiffness in the affected joints, especially in the morning or after sitting for long periods of time
  • Limited flexibility and range of motion
  • Grating from friction between the ends of the bones
  • Bone spurs

Anyone can develop and suffer from osteoarthritis, however, there are certain conditions and risk factors that can make the likelihood of developing the condition higher, including:

Rheumatoid Arthritis And Osteoarthritis

What Is the Difference between Osteoarthritis and ...

The word arthritis simply means inflammation of the joint. The reasons for that inflammation, however, varies. In the case of osteoarthritis, the cause is wear and tear. RA is an auto-immune condition, meaning that the immune system, normally there to protect us, is attacking healthy the joints.

Until I was diagnosed, I thought that arthritis was just something that old people get.

Until you or someone close to you is diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis , unfortunately, this is most peoples perception of the disease. This is, at least in part, because many people, including some healthcare professionals, still refer to osteoarthritis as arthritis. So whats the difference?

One third of people over the age of 45 in the UK have sought treatment for osteoarthritis, whereas RA affects a much smaller number, at around 1% of the UK population.

There are also differences between the joints affected by these two conditions. Rheumatoid arthritis tends to affect joints symmetrically, most commonly the small joints of the hands and feet. Multiple joints may be affected, sometimes simultaneously, whereas OA will be isolated to individual joints. Osteoarthritis can affect the lower parts of the spine, and the finger joints closest to the nailbeds, both of which are areas of the body rarely affected in RA. RA can affect different joints at different times, whereas osteoarthritis doesnt come and go, although pain and stiffness can come and go.

Also Check: How To Ease Arthritis Pain In Fingers

Or Your Symptoms Come Back Really Suddenly

Kelly Rouba-Boyd was just two years old when she was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis in 1982. Normally, I was a really good toddler and my mom became concerned because I was rather fussy and had a fever. A little later on, I was limping, the now-41-year-old tells SELF.

Rouba-Boyds pediatrician immediately suspected she had arthritis due to these symptoms, and she received an official diagnosis not long after. Initially, Rouba-Boyd was treated with baby aspirin. At that point in time, they didnt have much to treat children with rheumatoid arthritis, she explains. But that did not do much to stop the progression of the disease.

What Is The Difference Between Arthritis And Rheumatoid Arthritis Symptoms

Arthritis is an inflammation of the joint or joints resulting in pain and/or disability, joint swelling, and stiffness. Rheumatoid arthritis is a type of inflammatory arthritis that causes synovial inflammation.

With regard to the difference between arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis symptoms, the symptoms in arthritis differ depending on the form of arthritis. However, there is a spectrum of symptoms associated with rheumatoid arthritis. More details are below.

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Summary Arthritis Vs Rheumatoid Arthritis Symptoms

Arthritis can be defined as inflammation of the joint or joints resulting in pain and disability, joint swelling, and stiffness whereas rheumatoid arthritis is a type of inflammatory arthritis that causes synovial inflammation. Rheumatoid arthritis is, therefore, a subgroup of arthritis. Therefore, the symptoms in arthritis differ depending on the form of arthritis and in rheumatoid arthritis, there is a spectrum of symptoms.


1.Parveen Kumar. Kumar and Clarks Clinical Medicine. Edited by Michael L Clark, 8th ed.

Image Courtesy:

2.6942317880 by david__jones via Flickr

Differences Between Ra And Gout

Osteoarthritis vs rheumatoid arthritis pathophysiology | NCLEX-RN | Khan Academy

Both diseases cause redness, swelling, and pain in the joints. Both can cause serious disability and disrupt your quality of life.

However, a close look at initial signs and which joints are involved will clearly differentiate these two diseases. The best way to know whether you have RA or gout is to make an appointment with your doctor for a diagnosis.

Specific signs that distinguish the diseases:

Recommended Reading: How To Cope With Rheumatoid Arthritis

Comparison Table Between Rheumatoid And Psoriatic Arthritis

Parameters of Comparison
The affects the joints on opposite sides in the matching pairs and rarely affects the spine. They affect the joints asymmetrically and also cause inflammation of the lower spine.
Symptoms Their symptoms include fever, dry mouth, joint pain, dry eyes, loss of fatigue, etc. Their symptoms include swelling and pain in at least one joint, inflammation of the eyes, foot pain, back pain, etc.
Treatment nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can be taken at minor levels, for increased situations, anti-rheumatic or anti-tumor necrosis drugs are prescribed. Many treatments such as physical therapy or surgery, disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs can be used for the treatment.
Diagnosis Blood tests can be done for checking the presence of two antibodies i.e rheumatoid factor and anti-cyclic citrullinated peptide which indicates the presence of disease also. Blood tests are usually not done but certain factors can be taken into account for their diagnosis such as Asymmetrical joint involvement, skin and nail involvement, etc.

Measures To Reduce Bone Loss

Inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis can cause bone loss, which can lead to osteoporosis. The use of prednisone further increases the risk of bone loss, especially in postmenopausal women.

You can do the following to help minimize the bone loss associated with steroid therapy:

  • Use the lowest possible dose of glucocorticoids for the shortest possible time, when possible, to minimize bone loss.
  • Get an adequate amount of calcium and vitamin D, either in the diet or by taking supplements.
  • Use medications that can reduce bone loss, including that which is caused by glucocorticoids.
  • Control rheumatoid arthritis itself with appropriate medications prescribed by your doctor.

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Ehealth And Mobile Health Interventions

A new emerging area of support for disease management is through digital technology using eHealth and mobile health interventions. These interventions have to potential to support the development of self-management skills, or assist the healthcare team to monitor symptoms. For JIA, current studies have focused on the health issues pain, health related quality of life, physical activity and disease management. Children and adolescents have used these interventions through a range of devices including computers, laptops, personal digital assistants, multimedia-players, and wearable accelerometers synchronised to smart phone. This allows access to these interventions from home. Early usability studies have been gaining positive feedback by children and adolescents. They are familiar with this type of technology and report liking these interventions. However further research is still needed to understand their full potential in supporting children and adolescents living with complex needs.

Psoriatic Arthritis And Rheumatoid Arthritis Are Both Chronic Inflammatory Conditions

Arthritis Types Symptoms Prevention Control ...

With both diseases, an overzealous immune system mistakenly attacks healthy cells in your body. That can result in joint pain, stiffness, and swelling, along with perpetual fatigue and other symptoms more specific to either disease.

The causes of psoriatic arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are still up in the air, but doctors suspect the diseases have an underlying genetic component that may make a person more susceptible to certain environmental triggers.

In any case, psoriatic arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are both lifelong diseases that can occur in flares . And while theres no cure for either disease, treatments for both psoriatic arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis have come a long way toward keeping symptoms at bay, sometimes even putting the disease into remission. Plus, the right medication can help protect your body from the permanent damage these conditions can cause if left untreated, so its important to work with your doctor to manage your disease.

Read Also: How To Deal With Arthritis

What Is Osteoarthritis

This stems from wear and tear of the joints. The symptoms usually develop gradually and include:

  • pain

Osteoarthritis results from wear and tear, while rheumatoid arthritis stems from an immune response. The two conditions also cause different symptoms.

Here are a few ways in which rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis are different:

  • Rheumatoid arthritis is more likely to affect the middle and lowest joints of the fingers.
  • Osteoarthritis is more likely to affect the joint at the base of the thumb and those at the tips of the fingers.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis tends to affect both sides of the body, while osteoarthritis often affects just one side.
  • After a person gets up from resting, pain from rheumatoid arthritis can take at least 1 hour to start easing, while pain and stiffness from osteoarthritis often improve after activity.
  • The main symptoms of osteoarthritis affect the joints, but rheumatoid arthritis can cause flu-like symptoms, which may appear before the joint pain.

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