Arthritis Is Not a Single Disease
Fibromylagia is the second most common condition that affects joints. As opposed to many other types of arthritis, fibromylagia patients have joint pain without swelling or joint damage.
Rheumatoid arthritis is also very prevalent affecting at least 1% of the population. Rheumatoid arthritis is an example of an inflammatory arthritis characterized by prolonged morning stiffness (greater than 45 minutes), joint swelling and damage. Early diagnosis and treatment of rheumatoid arthritis has been shown to help symptoms as well as prevent damage, deformity, and disability.
Other Conditions Which Commonly Cause Arthritis
Other conditions that commonly cause arthritis include:
Accurate diagnosis and treatment of arthritis is essential to ensure the best outcome for the patient.
Arthritis Can Have Systemic Effects
Many conditions associated with arthritis also are characterized by involvement of additional organ systems. For example, it is not uncommon for patients with rheumatoid arthritis to develop scarring in the lung while lupus patients may have involvement of the skin, heart, lung, central nervous system and kidneys.
Answers provided by Scott J. Zashin, M.D., clinical assistant professor at University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, Division of Rheumatology, in Dallas, Texas. Dr. Zashin is also an attending physician at Presbyterian Hospitals of Dallas and Plano. He is a fellow of the American College of Physicians and the American College of Rheumatology and a member of the American Medical Association. Dr. Zashin is author of Arthritis Without Pain - The Miracle Of TNF Blockers. The book is useful for anyone on one of the biologic drugs (Enbrel, Remicade, Humira) or considering the biologic drugs. Read my review of the book.