Arthritis is the inflammation, swelling, and tenderness of a joint on which the invading organism attacks the synovial fluid. Before discussing the Management of Arthritis, we must need to know its types, causes, and symptoms. There are more than 100 different types of arthritis with different causes and treatments. The two most common types of arthritis are rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. Arthritis is most commonly seen in adults over the age of 50 but it can also develop in children, teenagers, younger adults. It is more common in people with overweight.
Most common types of Arthritis
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1.Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)
RA is a chronic, systemic autoimmune disorder or diffuses connective tissue disease and characterized by diffuse inflammation and degeneration in the connective tissue mainly in that area that has a cavity and easily moving surface. RA affects our different body systems such as the cardiovascular system, pulmonary system, neurological, renal system, dermatological system, etc.
It is caused by infections, genetic factors, cigarette smoking, nutritional and environmental factors cause RA. The disease can be identified through a different clinical test like same as Arthritis but in this laboratory, the test is mainly done to identify anemia, thrombocytopenia, LFT, neutropenia, impaired T, and B cell immunity is mainly is examined.
If conservative management is ineffective, surgery is done for the correction of deformity, relieve pain, or restoration of function. Some of the commonly performed surgical procedures are arthroscopy, orthotomy, arthroplasty, synovectomy, osteotomy, tendon transplants.
OA is a progressive disorder of the joints caused by gradual loss of cartilage that may result in the development of cysts at the margins of the joints. osteoarthritis is one of the most common causes of disability due to the limitations of joint movement.
It is a degenerative joint disease is one of the most common forms of arthritis which attacks mainly people over the age of 50. It mainly affects the knees, hands, hips, feet, and spine. The main cause of OA is genetic factors another one is age. As our body gets older, there is a reduction in the ability of cartilage to repair itself. Another cause is nutritional deficiencies like calcium and vitamin D. People with overweight, obesity, diabetes mellitus are prone to this disease.
In this morning stiffness is seen for more than 30 minutes, crepitus sound with joints movement, pain occurs when the joint is not being used which may result in loss of the normal motion or movement in that joint. It can be treated through the same procedure as mention above. In this also X-ray, physical examination, laboratory test, synovial fluid test, routine blood test, an MRI is done for the diagnosis.
Cause of Arthritis
- Bacterial cause(staphylococcus)
- Inadequate nutrition
- lack of exercise
Risk factors of Arthritis
- Chronic conditions like renal failure, malignancy, diabetes, etc.
- Sex (in comparison to Male female are mostly affected)
- Weak immune system
- Intravenous drug use
Sign and symptoms of Arthritis
- Extreme throbbing pain especially with movement.
- Fever, inflammation (warmth, redness), and swelling of affected joints.
- Fatigue and weakness
- Immobility of the affected joints, loss of functions.
- Joint swelling resulting in enlargement of joints.
- Decrease movement by the affected joints.
Diagnosis of Arthritis
- History taking and physical examination
- Culture and sensitivity test (C/S of fluid aspirated from affected joint, Blood spectrum, pus, urine culture Infected synovial fluid is cloudy with WBC count and low glucose)
- Joint x-ray
- Arthroscopy (direct visualization of joints)
- CT.MRT and bone scan
Management of Arthritis
1. Pain management and comfort
This is one of the best ways of Management of Arthritis. Some points are listed below which you need to follow.
- Bed rest should be done in a comfortable position.
- We should provide warm compresses to the joint.
- The affected limb should be elevated to relieve edema and pain.
- We should not mobilize the joint during the acute stage of the disease.
- Avoid the habit of bearing weight.
- The splint should be used on the affected joint.
- Analgesia should be provided according to the prescription.
2. Promote rest and exercise
- Ensure rest between activities.
- Bed rest should be done at the acute stage of the disease.
- Genital exercise should be done regularly to prevent stiffness.
- We should do active and passive exercise after acute stage management.
- Exercise to preserve joint mobility helps to maintain muscle tone, strength, and maintain joint movement.
3. Monitor the side effects of the drugs and the age of man accordingly.
4. Provide prescribed antibiotics and other medications at the proper time.
5. Provide client teaching on the following topic:
Importance of daily exercise
- Infection prevention
- Complete bed rest during a severe attack.
- Immobilize joints with splints.
- Use a firm mattress with one pillow under the head to put the neck in flexion, this takes the weight off joints.
- Instruct client to lie in a prone position twice a day on a daily basis to prevent hip and knee contractors. Instruct the client to take a warm bath or shower upon arising which helps to shorten the period of morning stiffness.
- Advice the client to wear loose clothes without buttons while working in the kitchen or while sitting on a chair or bench.
- Instruct the client to apply cold packs to inflamed, swollen joints this helps to reduce swelling and pain.
- Apply gentle massage to relax muscles.
- Advice to wear correct shoes and limb supporters for a foot disorder.
- Teach to increase physical mobility.
- Increase adequate diet which is richer in calcium and vitamin D (such as milk, carrot, cereal, oatmeal, fatty fish, mushroom, egg yolks, etc. should be taken).
- Detection of signs and symptoms of recurrence of infection.
- Avoid weight-bearing activities for a short period of time by the affected part.
- Avoid joint stress and trauma
In conclusion, in order to manage and prevent all the disease conditions especially joint pain regular exercise (Management of Arthritis), a nutritious balanced diet should be taken regularly and align with this avoid the habit of lifting overweight to prevent further complications.