Arthritis signs and symptoms

“My joint hurts; the Doctor says I have Arthritis.” – Is it really that simple?

You know what; it’s not as simple as it sounds. Arthritis is a nonspecific term denoting acute or chronic inflammation of a joint that causes pain, discomfort, swelling, and restriction in movements. More interestingly, it is not a single disease but a broad spectrum.

Here in this post, you will learn the common types of Arthritis and how our team of expert Physiotherapists, soft tissue therapists and massage therapists in Chelmsford can help you deal with arthritis.

What are The types of Arthritis?

According to the cause, level of inflammation, and how the joints are affected, the following are some common types.

1. Osteoarthritis (OA)

Defined as a degenerative, non-inflammatory joint disease characterized by the destruction of articular cartilage and formation of new bone at the joint surfaces and margins.
Though OA can occur in all the joints due to aging, it is more commonly seen in weight-bearing joints like knee, hip, ankle, and spine. Among them, knee tops in the list.

Old Age, Obesity, Poor Posture, Poor Biomechanics and Weak muscles surrounding the Joints contribute to Osteoarthritis.

The image below shows the x-ray images post Total Knee replacement due to osteoarthritis.

Total knee replacement post op due to arthritis

2. Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis is an inflammatory disease of the joints. It is a systemic disease of young and middle-aged adults characterized by proliferative and destructive changes in synovial membrane, periarticular structures, skeletal muscles and perineural sheaths. Eventually, joints are destroyed, fibrosed https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fibrosis or ankylosed https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ankylosis.
The exact cause is unknown, but malfunction of the immune system are expected to cause RA.

3. Infective Arthritis

Infective arthritis is a bacterial infection of the joint which causes an intense inflammatory reaction with the migration of polymorphonuclear leucocytes https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Granulocyte and subsequent release of proteolytic enzymes. The articular cartilage is destructed first and later the joints.

4. Metabolic Arthritis

Gout and Pseudogout (CPPD) are known as Metabolic Arthritis. Deposition of metabolic crystals such as Monosodium urate and Calcium Pyrophosphate in the joints causes such arthritis.

Signs and Symptoms of Arthritis

  • Pain
  • Early Morning Stiffness
  • Restricted Range of Joint Movements
  • Joints Swelling.
  • Minimal tenderness
  • Coarse crepitus.
  • Joint deformities.

Non-surgical inteventions for Arthritis

Aside from Surgical and Medical interventions, A soft tissue therapist or Physiotherapist can play a great role in managing pain and preventing Arthritis from getting worst. Some of the important intervention that you will receive from an expert at our clinic are;

Acute Phase

  •  Positioning of the limbs in proper resting position.
  • Advice on elevation and compression for oedema (swelling) management.
  • Soft tissue massage to help reduce swellings (if any) and to release muscle imbalance.
  • Acupuncture for pain reduction
  • Advice for pain management.
  • Taping to support the joint and help offload pressure on the joint.
  • Biomechanical Corrections

 

Chronic Phase

  • Isometric and isokinetic exercises to strengthen the muscles that surround the joints.
  • Range of Motion exercises for restricted joints
  • Stretching exercises to improve joints movement
  • Soft tissue and massage therapy
  • Acupuncture for pain reduction
  • Posture Correction
  • Biomechanics correction
  • Support to correct the joint deformities.

Benefits and uses of acupuncture

Conclusion

In this post you have learned, different types of arthritis, and how we play a role in managing and treating it at different stages.

Now what? Where do I consult an Expert experienced in dealing with Arthritis?

Well, if you are living in Chelmsford, Essex, you already have the answers.

It is Faye Pattison’s Physiotherapy & healthcare Clinic! Contact us to start managing your Arthritis by our well-experienced expert therapists.

 

If you want to read more in depth on this subject follow this link the CSP (Chartered Society of Physiotherapists) website http://www.csp.org.uk/your-health/conditions/arthritis

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