Psa Vs Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis , like PsA, is an inflammatory type of arthritis related to problems with the immune system, according to the NPF. Both may appear similar on the surface, but there are key differences when you look deeper. Here are some of the main ones:
Treatments for PsA and RA are similarincluding nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , steroids, and biologicsbut because of all the differences in these two conditions on a microscopic level, they may respond differently to medsso its important to get the right diagnosis.
Eat: Cherries And Berries
Berries particularly dark varieties, like blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries as well as cherries contain phytonutrients called anthocyanins, which help calm inflammation, according to the Arthritis Foundation. A study published in March 2018 in the journal Nutrients found that consuming cherries in particular both sweet and tart varieties may help decrease inflammation in the body. Meanwhile, strawberries and raspberries are packed with vitamin C, which can help lower your risk for high blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
Lasts At Least A Few Days
Dr. Husni also says that a psoriatic arthritis flare usually doesnt go away after an hour or two. If you get better right away we dont really consider that a flare, which usually lasts over a couple of days or a week, she says. But, if the symptoms are really severe, you should still call your doctor even if its only been a short time. Theres no magic number of days or hours its more of how it affects your activities of daily living, Dr. Husni says.
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Maintain A Healthy Weight
Being overweight can drive up your inflammation. Where body fat is distributed can contribute, as well. For instance, a large waist circumference is typically associated with excess inflammation.
Researchers recognize that there is a connection between inflammation and obesity, although more needs to be learned. At the very least, talk to your doctor to determine the ideal body mass index for your frame, and work toward that goal.
You dont need to lose a lot of weight to improve inflammation. Reducing your weight by between 5% and 10% significantly lowers your level of inflammation, according to the Obesity Action Coalition.
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What Treatment Is Right For Me
The type of treatment will depend on how severe your symptoms are at the time of diagnosis with the goal being to control the disease to the point of remission and avoid complications. Medications may need to be changed over time to continue to maintain control and avoid disease progression and systemic effects. Some early indicators of more severe disease include onset at a young age, multiple joint involvement, and spinal involvement. Good control of the skin is important in the management of psoriatic arthritis. In many cases, you may be seen by two different types of healthcare providers, one in rheumatology and one in dermatology.
Early diagnosis and treatment can relieve pain and inflammation and help prevent progressive joint involvement and damage. Without treatment psoriatic arthritis can potentially be disabling, cause chronic pain, affect quality of life, and increase risk of heart disease. It is important to update your healthcare provider when you have a change in symptoms or if your medication regimen is no longer effective.
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How Lifestyle Changes Help
In addition to drugs that slow down the march of psoriatic arthritis, you can change your lifestyle to ease the pain, stiffness, and fatigue that come with the disease:
Simplify tasks. Why strain your joints when there are products to make twisting, turning, pushing, and pulling easier? Look for arthritis-friendly products to suit your needs, large and small from gardening tools to walk-in bathtubs. You can also change the way you do everyday things. For example: Use your body, not your hands, to push open doors lift cookware with two hands instead of one.
Slim down. Losing weight is hard, whether youâre trying to shed 10 or 100 pounds. But achieving a healthy weight can make a difference in your PsA. It lightens the load on your joints, which means less pain, more energy, and better mobility. Plus, being overweight can make some PsA medications less effective.
Master your stress. Like fanning a flame, stress causes your body to release chemicals that aggravate PsA. Consider a therapist or support group for PsA, as well as these proven ways to manage stress:
Treatment for psoriatic arthritis aims to:
- relieve symptoms
- slow the conditions progression
- improve quality of life
This usually involves trying a number of different medicines, some of which can also treat the psoriasis. If possible, you should take 1 medicine to treat both your psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.
The main medicines used to treat psoriatic arthritis are:
How Do You Get A Timely And Accurate Diagnosis
If you suspect PsA, youre probably eager to find out for surebecause the sooner youre diagnosed, the sooner you can get treatment for your pain. Plus, leaving PsA untreated can lead to permanent joint damage. So how do you get the correct diagnosisfast? It often comes down to whether your doctor is knowledgeable of PsA.
Its important that dermatologists and primary care physicians caring for patients with psoriasis ask about joint pain, morning stiffness, nail changes, and evidence of dactylitis and refer them early to rheumatologists to avoid a delay in diagnosis, Dr. Ward says.
Make sure your rheumatologist is well-versed in PsA, too: Seeing a rheumatologist who is familiar with psoriatic arthritis and seronegative spondyloarthropathies can help with making a timely and accurate diagnosis, says Dr. Kohler.
A doctor who is thorough is also more likely to help you get a fast, accurate diagnosis. Once you get in the room with a good rheumatologist, theyll likely collect your medical and family history and do a physical exam, blood tests, and imaging tests to diagnose you. For example, your doctor should ask you questions regarding any skin issues that could indicate psoriasis if youre not already diagnosed, Creaky Joints says. Taking time to check you for things like nail symptoms, including yellowing or brittleness, that can be easy to miss is also a good sign.
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What Are The Types Of Psoriatic Arthritis
There are five main subtypes of psoriatic arthritis. These are not mutually exclusive, Dr. Haberman explains, meaning someone can have more than one subtype at once, which can make it difficult to diagnose, she adds.
- Asymmetric oligoarticular: The most common type of psoriatic arthritis, this is when the condition affects different joints on opposite sides of the body.
- Symmetric polyarthritis: The second-most common psoriatic arthritis subtype, this is when the same joints on both sides of the body are affected.
- Spondylitis: Lots of pain and stiffness in the back may indicate this type of psoriatic arthritis. Inflammation occurs in the joints between the spine’s vertebrae.
- Distal interphalangeal predominant: The joints in the fingers and toes closest to the nails are called the distal interphalangeal joints. Hence, this type of psoriatic arthritis affects those joints and sometimes the nails.
- Arthritis mutilans: While rare, arthritis mutilans is the most severe type of psoriatic arthritis. It leads to deformations in joints in the hands and feet on one or both sides of the body.
Foods To Avoid If You Have Psoriatic Arthritis
- Alcohol: It makes your liver work harder and disrupts the way your organs work together.
- Sugar: It sends out things called cytokines that create inflammation in your body.
- Processed foods: They contain trans fats that can start inflammation throughout your body.
- Diet soda: If itâs sweetened with aspartame, your body might think thatâs a foreign substance and start an immune response.
- Fried foods: They contain trans fats that can start inflammation throughout your body.
- Processed meats: They contain saturated fats, which can make inflammation worse.
- Red meat: It contains saturated fats, which can make inflammation worse.
- Dairy: These foods contain saturated fats, which can make inflammation worse.
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How Can I Find The Appropriate Care I Need
Initially your GP is the first point of contact, who then should refer you on to a dermatologist/rheumatologist, if this is not already the case. If you are not happy with the advice you receive, remember you are always entitled to seek a second opinion. Remember, If you are seeing a dermatologists for your psoriasis and a rheumatologists for your arthritis make sure each is aware of this, so they can liaise and provide you with appropriate care for both conditons.
Foods To Avoid With Psoriatic Arthritis
Psoriatic arthritis is one the most common types of arthritis and nearly 30% of people with psoriasis will develop psoriatic arthritis in their lifetime. It affects both men and women, usually between ages 30 to 50. Fortunately, there are healthy ways to reduce the stiffness and joint pain that come along with psoriatic arthritis. Making changes to your diet is a smart first step and can help you eliminate foods that trigger flare-ups and cause inflammation.
Researchers have found that cutting back on sugar, dairy, gluten, and certain fats can reduce symptoms of psoriatic arthritis. Eating a healthy diet filled with lean meats, fruits and vegetables can have a positive impact and help you lose weight to ease pressure on your joints. No matter what diet you choose, its important to watch portion size and eat a wide range of nutrients.
If you want to incorporate a psoriasis arthritis diet into your daily routine, start by talking to your doctor. Eliminate trigger foods to see how they affect your symptoms. Then you and your doctor can determine what type of diet will be best for your body moving forward.
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Diets To Try With Psoriatic Arthritis
Are you ready to make a change to your diet and improve your symptoms? Great! There are several diets you can try that will help reduce inflammation. Experiment with a few or combine some of your favorite parts of each diet to create a plan that you can live with for the long term.
- Anti-inflammatory diet: This simple diet focuses on eating fruits, fish, and leafy greens to reduce inflammation and provide your body with healthy antioxidants.
- Paleo diet: The key to this cavemand diet is avoiding nuts, grains, dairy, and processed foods. It encourages eating lean meat, eggs, fish, fruits and vegetables. Removing sugary foods and dairy are the key components for eliminating inflammation with this diet.
- Weight-loss diet: Here youll concentrate on limiting the amount of carbohydrates, sugars, and fats you eat. The goal is to lose extra weight and reduce stress on your joints.
- Mediterranean diet: Similar to the other diets, the Mediterranean style of eating includes grains, fish, fruits, and vegetables. The magic with this plan is extra virgin olive oil. Use it generously in your cooking for anti-inflammatory effects and added healthy omega-3s that ease joint movement.
- Gluten-free diet: Over 25% of people with psoriasis have a gluten sensitivity. You can cut back the gluten in your diet by limiting baked goods, pastas, and grains. This diet also encourages you to replace gluten with healthy choices like fruits, vegetables, and whole foods.
How To Naturally Prevent Psoriatic Arthritis Symptoms
Arthritis is a common health issue that occurs as a result of joint pain and inflammation. Doctors say that there certain joints that are more affected than others. The body parts that we use most, like our hands and feet, and the weight-bearing joints like those of the back, hips, knees, and ankles, are the most affected by arthritis. The symptoms can range from pain, tightness, and stiffness in the joints, or cracking of some joints. Most patients experience the symptoms while doing physical activity.
The diagnosis is easy for arthritis, but its treatment is different, depending on the cause. There is no proper medication that can directly improve the situation, and the last resort is surgery to replace the joints. But before opting for surgery, doctors recommend over-the-counter relief medicines, some exercises, water aerobics, losing weight, dietary changes, and some natural remedies. Doctors also suggest some natural treatments for psoriatic arthritis to alleviate its risk factors. Yoga and massage are the best natural treatments for psoriatic arthritis. Given below are a few methods that act as natural treatments for psoriatic arthritis.
2. Opt for healthier food alternativesRed meat and processed meat products can help you gain weight easily, so avoid these foods if you have psoriatic arthritis. Instead, you can eat foods like chicken and fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, nuts, and beans.
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You May Rethink Your Career Choices After A Psoriatic Arthritis Diagnosis
For Paige Meleney, 29, a small animal veterinarian in Cleveland who learned she had psoriatic arthritis in elementary school, living with this condition meant rethinking the career she had always envisioned for herself.
My goal was to do musical theater and to sing on Broadway someday, and I performed throughout middle school, high school, and college, explains Meleney, who chronicles life with her condition on . I remember when I finally had to have the big conversation with my parents.
She knew a career in musical theater would not only be physically demanding, requiring a lot of dancing and late nights, but could also be financially unstable. Although there was a chance that I could have fulfilled that dream, the reality was because of my arthritis I needed to pursue a career where I could have health insurance to maintain my disease and pay my bills, she explains.
Accepting a new vision of yourself and reinventing your dreams can help build your resilience and open the door to new possibilities. While Meleney decided to pursue a degree in biology instead of musical theater, she looked for a way to keep pursuing the things she loves.
I ended up finding an a cappella group in college that I loved and sang with 24/7. That kept me sane while I got my biology degree, she says. I use music in different ways its just not my career. I do love my job as a veterinarian though, so I cant complain.
Physical Trauma Could Raise Psoriatic Arthritis Risk
The March 2021 review article also showed that psoriatic arthritis risk was influenced by physical trauma, which could include fractures and other incidents requiring any type of medical care. Earlier research yielded similar findings: In a study published in June 2015 in Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases, researchers found that physical trauma, especially to bones and joints, was tied to an increased risk of psoriatic arthritis in people with psoriasis.
So why might physical trauma raise your odds of developing psoriatic arthritis? According to the authors of the 2015 study, this is due to the Koebner phenomenon a link between the development of psoriasis lesions after damage to the skin. And the same goes for damage to bones or joints caused by trauma, which experts call the deep Koebner effect.
We have seen more often in skin for example, vitiligo, psoriasis, says Modi.
Wondering how can you protect yourself from the Koebner phenomenon if you have psoriasis? If you have a cut or other skin wound, be sure to promptly clean and dress it to avoid infection. And to prevent cuts during outdoor activities, wear long sleeves and pants when you can.
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How To Avoid Psoriatic Arthritis
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What Are The Symptoms Of Psoriatic Arthritis
Thepsoriasis symptoms may start before or after the arthritis. Psoriasis causes red, scalyrashes and thick, pitted fingernails. About 3 in 20 to 3 in 10 people with psoriasismay develop psoriatic arthritis. Symptoms of psoriatic arthritis may include:
- Inflamed, swollen, and painful joints, often in the fingers and toes
- Deformed joints from chronic inflammation
The symptoms of psoriatic arthritis can look like other health conditions. Make sure to see your healthcare provider for a diagnosis.
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Understanding Remission And Minimal Disease Activity
Psoriatic arthritis disease progression is not inevitable. When your PsA is treated with medications that reduce immune system overactivity, you can reduce your disease activity to a point that its no longer causing significant symptoms or increasing the risk of long-term health issues.
In general, going into remission means that you are no longer showing signs of active disease. Decades ago, remission wasnt conceivable for most people with psoriatic arthritis, but thanks to a proliferation in medication treatment options, getting to remission is a possibility for PsA patients today.
However, going into remission does not mean that you will stay there indefinitely. It is common for PsA symptoms to wax and wane. Even if youve been in remission for a long time and your pain starts coming back and you start flaring more, you may need to change your medication for better control, says Dr. Haberman.
You may also hear the phrase minimal disease activity in conjunction with psoriatic arthritis and remission.
Doctors dont have a clear definition of what it means to be in remission in PsA, but they have defined something called minimal disease activity as a treatment target. This is what your doctor may use to determine whether your PsA disease activity is low enough that you have few symptoms and a low risk of long-term damage.
People are considered to be in minimal disease activity when their scores on five out of these seven criteria are low enough.