What Makes Me Susceptible To Arthritis Of The Knee
Inherited bone structure or genetic mutations can contribute to the development of knee arthritis, as well as repetitive injury from a profession or sports. Age-related arthritis becomes common after 45 years of age.
Weight is also a factor, since the knee bears much of the bodys weight. The constant pounding pressure that is placed on the knee when walking, which becomes greater with more weight, causes the cartilage in the joint to break down over time. When the cartilage disintegrates, bone-on-bone scraping occurs whenever you move your leg.
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What Is Arthritis In The Legs
The term arthritis refers to redness and swelling of the joints characterized by joint pain and stiffness. A joint is the area where two bones meet. The two bones at the site of the joint are separated by a cushioning tissue called the cartilage that protects the joint and facilitates proper movement. The joint space is lined by the synovial membrane that secretes a fluid called synovial fluid. Synovial fluid lubricates and protects the joints to allow for adequate movement. Arthritis may result when any of the joint structures are damaged. Leg arthritis affects the joints of the hips, knees, ankles or feet. There are over 100 types of arthritis. The most common types of arthritis affecting the legs are
- Osteoarthritis: This is the most common type of arthritis. It occurs due to wear and tear of the joint cartilage that happens with increasing age.
- Rheumatoid arthritis: In this type of arthritis, the bodys immune system attacks and damages the joints.
- Gout: This occurs due to excessive deposition of uric acid crystals in the joints, which causes joint inflammation.
- : This refers to arthritis that occurs as a result of joint infection.
- Post-traumatic arthritis: This type of arthritis results because of injury or after a surgery or other invasive procedure on the joint.
- Psoriatic arthritis: People who suffer from a long-term skin condition, psoriasis, may develop psoriatic arthritis along with the skin manifestations such as plaques.
Youre Overdoing The Wrong Exercises Putting More Stress On Your Knee Joints
Although everyone with osteoarthritis is different, Halpern says that exercises that tend to aggravate knee osteoarthritis are deep squats, lunges, and any movement that pounds on the joint. Additionally, some people with osteoarthritis are simply too active, says Wayne Johnson, MD, an orthopedic surgeon in Lawton, Oklahoma. For example, runners might need to cut back on running, while people who do other active things like gardening, for example should spread out their activities instead of trying to do it all in one day. Talk to your doctor about what types of exercise are safe for you given the severity of your osteoarthritis and the amount of pain you experience.
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What You Need To Know
- There are several types of hip arthritis, including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis and post-traumatic arthritis.
- The causes of hip arthritis vary depending on the type. The most common cause is age-related wear and tear in the hip joint.
- Symptoms of hip arthritis may include pain in or near the hip joint, stiffness, audible clicking sounds when moving the hip, and weakness.
- While hip arthritis is usually a chronic condition, there are treatments to help ease the symptoms and reduce further damage. If your quality of life suffers, surgery such as hip replacement can provide long-term relief.
What Are The Warning Signs Of Arthritis
Pain from arthritis can be ongoing or can come and go. It may occur when you’re moving or after you have been still for some time. You may feel pain in one spot or in many parts of your body.
Your joints may feel stiff and be hard to move. You may find that it’s hard to do daily tasks you used to do easily, such as climbing stairs or opening a jar. Pain and stiffness may be more severe during certain times of the day or after you’ve done certain tasks.
Some types of arthritis cause swelling or inflammation. The skin over the joint may appear swollen and red and feel hot to the touch. Some types of arthritis can also cause fatigue.
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Will I Need Knee Surgery
Your doctor will recommend other treatments first. Knee replacement surgery is usually a last resort when damage to the knee is severe and irreparable.
Some people get surgery to remove the inflamed joint lining. Your doctor may call that lining the âsynoviumâ and the procedure a âsynovectomy.â The operation, which is performed less frequently than in the past because of better medications, can relieve knee pain for up to 5 years.
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases: What are Knee Problems?Living with Arthritis,Rheumatoid Arthritis.
National Institutes of Health: X-Plain Rheumatoid Arthritis.
Arthritis Foundation: Rheumatoid Arthritis Resources.
Arthritis Today: How is Rheumatoid Diagnosed?
American College of Rheumatology: Rheumatoid Arthritis,Joint Surgery.
News release, FDA.
Risk Factors For Knee Arthritis
- Age. Osteoarthritis is a degenerative, wear and tear condition. The older you are, the more likely you are to have worn-down knee joint cartilage.
- Heredity. Slight joint defects or double-jointedness and genetic defects may contribute to osteoarthritis in the knee.
- Excess weight. Being overweight or obese puts additional stress on the knees over time.
- Injury. Severe injury or repeated injury to the knee can lead to osteoarthritis years later.
- Overuse. Jobs and sports that require physically repetitive motions that place stress on the knee can increase risk for developing osteoarthritis.
- Gender. Postmenopausal women are more likely to have osteoarthritis than men.
- Autoimmune triggers. While the cause of rheumatoid arthritis remains unknown, triggers of autoimmune diseases are still an area of active investigation.
- Developmental abnormalities. Deformities such as knock knee and bowleg place higher than normal stress on certain parts of the knee joint and can wear away cartilage in those areas.
- Other health conditions. People with diabetes, high cholesterol, hemochromatosis and vitamin D deficiency are more likely to have osteoarthritis.
What Are Common Arthritis Treatments
There are many things that help reduce pain, relieve stiffness and keep you moving. Your care may involve more than one kind of treatment. Your doctor may recommend medications but there are many things you can do on your own to help manage pain and fatigue and move easier.
Finding the right treatment takes time. It can involve trial and error until you and your healthcare team or therapist find what works best. Be sure to let your doctor know if a treatment is not working. Your treatment may also change as your arthritis changes.
Treatments for arthritis can be divided into several categories: medication, exercise, heat/cold, pacing, joint protection, surgery and self-help skills. You can do things in each of these areas to help yourself feel better and move easier.
Coping With Arthritic Feet
- Steroid medications to be injected into the affected joints
- Custom-made shoes, shoe inserts, or arch supports to support your ankles and feet
- Physical therapy that includes foot exercises and stretches
Your doctor might recommend surgery if other treatments dont work to manage foot and ankle arthritis. Surgical options might include:
- Arthrodesis: Also called fusion surgery, this involves fusing bones together with rods, pins, screws, or plates. When bones heal, the bones will stay joined.
- Joint replacement surgery: Also called arthroplasty, this surgery is used only in severe cases. The surgeon will take out damaged bones and cartilage and replace them with metal and plastic.
Home remedies you can try to help you cope with arthritic feet include:
- Creams containing capsaicin or menthol: These creams may stop the nerves from sending out pain signals.
- Hot or cold packs in the affected areas
- Gentle exercises, including yoga and tai chi
- Foot massage
Making changes to your lifestyle can also help you to feel better and keep arthritis in your feet from getting worse. Lifestyle changes might include choosing low-impact exercises like swimming rather than high-impact ones , maintaining a healthy weight to keep stress off joints, and reducing or avoiding activities that trigger symptoms in the feet and ankles.
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Can Arthritis Cause Numbness
Numbness is often a symptom of nerve involvement. For instance, numbness in the arm may be related to nerve irritation in the neck. In such a situation, turning or bending the head to the involved side may increase the symptoms. For example, a pinched nerve in the right side of the neck may cause numbness in the arm and hand when a person attempts to look back over the right shoulder. If nerve irritation becomes more severe, the arm and hand may become weak. A physical examination X-rays and an MRI of the neck and electrodiagnostic tests may be useful in establishing the diagnosis.
How Is Reactive Arthritis Diagnosed
The process starts with a health history and a physical exam. Diagnosis can be difficult. This is because there are no specific tests that can confirm the condition. Some blood tests may be done to rule out other conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus. Other tests may include:
- Erythrocyte sedimentation rate . This test looks at how quickly red blood cells fall to the bottom of a test tube. When swelling and inflammation are present, the blood’s proteins clump together and become heavier than normal. They fall and settle faster at the bottom of the test tube. The faster the blood cells fall, the more severe the inflammation.
- Tests for infections. This includes a test for chlamydia. It may also include tests for other infections that are linked to reactive arthritis.
- Joint aspiration . A small sample of the synovial fluid is taken from a joint. It’s tested to see if crystals, bacteria, or viruses are present.
- Urine and stool samples. These are used to look for bacteria or other signs of disease.
- X-rays. This test uses a small amount of radiation to create images of tissues, bones, and organs. X-rays are used to look for swelling or damage to the joint. This can check for signs of spondylitis or sacroiliitis.
- Gene testing. A test may be done to check for HLA-B27.
You may also have testing to rule out other forms of arthritis.
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Skin And Nail Changes
Inflammatory arthritis, especially PsA, can cause skin and nail changes. For example, rashes associated with PsA and psoriasis can occur anywhere on the body, including on the feet. PsA is also associated with a condition called palmoplantar pustulosis, which can cause tiny, pus-filled blisters on the soles of the feet.
Up to 80% of people with PsA will have nail involvement. Toenail symptoms are also common in people with RA.
Nail changes associated with arthritis include pitting , discoloration, brittle nails, and onycholysis .
What Are The Four Stages Of Osteoarthritis In The Knees
People who have immense osteoarthritispain may only show mild changes on X-ray, so it is important to concentrate on the symptoms rather than just the X-ray. Below are the stages of osteoarthritis of the knee with appropriate treatment plans.
Stage 0 or Normal:
- When the knee shows no signs of osteoarthritis, it is classified as stage 0.
- There is no treatment required for stage 0 osteoarthritis.
Stage 1 or Minor:
- In this stage, patients may develop very minor wear and tear and bone spur growths at the end of the knee joints.
- Usually, patients may not feel pain or any discomfort.
- This stage is usually diagnosed as an incidental finding or during a regular health checkup.
- Physicians may not recommend any special treatment for stage 1. However, supplements such as glucosamine and chondroitin may be recommended. Lifestyle considerations such as regular exercise and weight loss may also prove to be helpful.
Stage 2 or Mild:
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What Are The Stages Of Arthritis Of The Knee
There are five stages of osteoarthritis, the most common type of arthritis that affects your knees:
- Stage 0 . If youre at stage 0, your knees are healthy. You dont have arthritis of the knee.
- Stage 1 . Stage 1 means that youve got some wear and tear in your knee joint. You probably wont notice pain.
- Stage 2 . The mild stage is when you might start to feel pain and stiffness, but theres still enough cartilage to keep the bones from actually touching.
- Stage 3 . If youre at the moderate stage, youll have more pain, especially when running, walking, squatting, and kneeling. Youll likely notice it after long periods of rest . You’re probably in a great deal of pain because the cartilage has narrowed even further and there are many bone spurs.
- Stage 4 . Severe osteoarthritis means that the cartilage is almost gone. Your knee is stiff, painful and possibly immobile. You might need surgery.
Leg Pain: Arthritis Or Peripheral Artery Disease
If you suffer from leg pain while walking, you may blame arthritis. But if the problem is peripheral artery disease , it can have serious consequences.
When fatty deposits–called plaque–accumulate in your bodys arteries, the condition is called atherosclerosis. In PAD, these fatty deposits build up in the arteries that carry blood to your legs.
Untreated, PAD can lead to gangrene and even leg amputation. Its also a warning sign that arteries in the heart and brain may be blocked, increasing your chances for heart attack and stroke.
Signs of PAD
PAD starts slowly and may go unnoticed. Discomfort can occur in the affected legs, thighs, calves, hips, buttocks, or feet. In addition to pain, other common sensations are heaviness, numbness, or aching in the leg muscles. Rest usually helps. Other symptoms include:
- Pale or bluish skin
- Lack of leg hair or toenail growth
- Sores on toes, feet, or legs that heal slowly or not at all
See your health care provider if you have any of these symptoms. PAD can be diagnosed with a simple test that measures blood flow by comparing blood pressure in your arms and legs.
Arthritis Affects Joints
Because PAD is such a serious and progressive disease, its important to know the difference between arthritis pain and symptoms that indicate blocked blood flow.
If joint pain lasts beyond three days, see a health care provider. Also get medical attention for:
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Why Are Rest And Exercise Important For Ra
You need to be active, but you also have to pace yourself. During flare-ups, when inflammation gets worse, itâs best to rest your joints. Using a cane or joint splints can help.
When the inflammation eases, itâs a good idea to exercise. Itâll keep your joints flexible and strengthen the muscles that surround them. Low-impact activities, like brisk walking or swimming, and gentle stretching can help. You may want to work with a physical therapist at first.
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How Ra Affects The Knees
Over time, the swelling can damage the cartilage and ligaments of the knee joints. These help your knee move and keep bones from grinding on each other.
As they become damaged, cartilage wears away and bones start to push and grind against each other. This results in pain and bone damage.
Damage from RA also raises the risk of breaking or wearing down bones more easily. This makes it difficult or impossible to walk or stand without pain or weakness.
A hallmark symptom of RA is tenderness, pain, or discomfort that gets worse when you stand, walk, or exercise. This is known as a flare-up. It can range from a mild, throbbing pain to an intense, sharp pain.
More common symptoms of RA in your knees include:
- warmth around the joint
Here are a few of the methods your doctor will use to diagnose RA in your knees:
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Arthritis Symptoms In Legs
Symptoms of arthritis experienced in legs are easy to identify. This article will provide you brief information on the symptoms and treatment for the same.
Symptoms of arthritis experienced in legs are easy to identify. This article will provide you brief information on the symptoms and treatment for the same.
Arthritis, in the simplest terms, can be defined as a condition marked by inflammation of one or several joints. It is one of the most common chronic diseases in the world. There are several types of arthritis, like rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis, etc. Pain and swelling in legs, knees or feet are the most common symptoms of arthritis.
Foot And Ankle Arthritis Diagnosis
Your doctor will ask about your medical history and do tests that might include:
- Custom-fitted shoes
Surgery for foot and ankle arthritis
Some people need at least one kind of surgery to treat foot and ankle arthritis. Your doctor will suggest the treatment thatâs best for you. Surgeries for arthritis include:
- Fusion surgery. This is also called arthrodesis. It involves fusing bones together with rods, pins, screws, or plates. After they heal, the bones remain joined.
- Joint replacement surgery. This is mostly used in severe cases. Your doctor may call it arthroplasty. Theyâll take out damaged bone and cartilage and replace it with metal or plastic.
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