Rheumatoid polyarthritis: symptoms and treatment of medicamentous and folk remedies
Rheumatoid polyarthritis is a chronic inflammatory process that affects mainly small joints in the hands and feet. Unlike the "wear" of the joints characteristic of osteoarthritis, in this case the damage is of a different nature: only the envelope suffers, the inflammation of which causes severe pain and can lead to bone erosion and joint deformation.
Rheumatoid polyarthritis, whose symptoms and treatment can turn into a real problem, is an autoimmune disease and occurs when the body's immune system mistakenly attacks its own tissues. In addition to the pathology of the joints, this impairment can cause diseases and other organs of the body, including the skin, eyes, lungs and blood vessels.
Although this disease can develop at any age, most often it affects people over forty. The most vulnerable to her are women.
Given the nature of rheumatoid polyarthritis, treatment( drugs and procedures) is aimed primarily at controlling symptoms and preventing joint damage.
Typical signs of pathology include:
- swelling and increased joint sensitivity( they can also become warm to the touch);
- morning stiffness, which can last for several hours;
- presence of solid cones from connective tissue that can be felt under the skin of the hands( rheumatoid nodules);
- fatigue, fever, unplanned weight loss.
Rheumatoid polyarthritis, a treatment whose symptoms and causes are identified and approved in the early stages of the disease, most often affects first small joints - usually those that connect the fingers to the hands and feet.
As the pathology progresses, the symptomatology almost always extends to the wrists, knees, ankles, elbows, hips and shoulders. In most cases, signs of impairment appear in the same joints on both sides( respectively, in the right and left extremities).
Symptoms of the disease often vary in severity and may even subside for a while to come back again. Periods of intensification of the disease - peculiar outbreaks - alternate with periods of relative remission, when swelling and pain syndrome abate or even completely disappear. Over time, rheumatoid arthritis, the symptoms and treatment of which the patient launched, causes deformation and displacement of the joints.
Consult a doctor if you notice that there is a foci of permanent inflammation in the joint area that causes discomfort.
Rheumatoid polyarthritis develops if the immune system attacks the synovial membrane of the membrane surrounding the joints.
Subsequent inflammatory process thickens the synovial membrane and eventually can lead to destruction of the cartilage and bone.
Tendons and ligaments that hold the joint in place are weakened and stretched. Gradually the joint loses its shape and shifts.
Modern medicine has not yet found out what exactly induces the immune system to respond inappropriately to the synovial membrane, but experts suggest that in this aspect the genetic factor is involved. Although the genes themselves do not contain any prerequisites for the development of a pathology such as rheumatoid polyarthritis( symptoms and treatment are fully described in this article), they may contain data on the predisposition to negative environmental effects. This means that infection of the body with a specific strain of the virus or bacteria can initiate joint pathology.
Circumstances that increase the risk of developing the disease are as follows:
- Sex. In women, rheumatoid polyarthritis is diagnosed more often.
- Age. Although this disorder can occur at any age, in most cases its symptoms appear between forty and sixty years.
- Family history. If a member of your family is diagnosed with rheumatoid polyarthritis, whose symptoms and treatment are approved by a trusted doctor, you are at risk.
The disease increases the risk of developing the following pathologies:
- Osteoporosis. Rheumatoid polyarthritis - both in itself, and in combination with drug therapy aimed at its treatment - can increase the risk of osteoporosis. This is a condition in which the bones become weaker and thinner, so that even a weak impact can lead to a crack.
- Carpal tunnel syndrome. If the disease has spread to the wrists, the inflammatory process can compress the nerve on which the hand and fingers depend.
- Heart Disease. Such a pathology of the joints increases the risk of thickening and blockage of the arteries. In addition, it can lead to inflammation of the bag surrounding the heart.
- Lung diseases. Rheumatoid polyarthritis, symptoms( treatment with folk remedies in this case is unlikely to be effective) which is combined with susceptibility to lung diseases, can cause inflammation of the lower respiratory tract and scar tissue of the lungs. As a result, the patient will suffer from progressive shortness of breath.
Before visiting a doctor
If you suspect yourself of rheumatoid polyarthritis, symptoms, treatment, the causes of the pathology and the prognosis, it is better to discuss with a competent doctor as soon as possible. It is recommended first to make an appointment with a therapist who will, if necessary, redirect you to a rheumatologist, a specialist in the treatment of arthritis and other inflammatory diseases. It is the rheumatologist who will evaluate your condition.
Before going to a medical consultation, make a list that includes the following items:
- a detailed description of the symptoms you are experiencing;
- information about the diseases, injuries and other health problems that you have suffered in the past;
- data on the state of health and diseases transferred by your parents, brothers and sisters;
- full list of medicines, vitamin complexes and biologically active food supplements that you take regularly;
- questions that you would like to ask your doctor.
doctor will say The specialist will probably ask you some of the following questions:
- When did you first notice the symptoms of the disease?
- Have the symptoms of the pathology changed over time?
- What joints hurt?
- Do any activities cause deterioration or improvement in your condition?
- Does the symptoms of pathology prevent the fulfillment of your routine, day-to-day duties?
- If the doctor confirms that you have polyarthritis, the symptoms, causes, diet and treatment will be the primary topics for consultation.
Rheumatoid polyarthritis is difficult to recognize in the early stages, since the primary signs and symptoms of the disease are identical to manifestations of other pathological conditions. At the moment there is no such blood test or type of physical examination, which could unambiguously confirm the assumptions of patients and doctors. However, in the presence of significant discomfort and inflammatory process, it is necessary to start treatment in time, and therefore specialists do their best to clarify the expected diagnosis.
So, a primary medical examination is performed to check the condition of the joints for the presence of swelling, redness and heat. In addition, with this examination, the doctor checks the reflexes and strength of the muscles.
In some cases, a radiography method is used to monitor changes in joints over time.
Patients diagnosed with rheumatoid polyarthritis( symptoms and folk remedies listed in the text) have an elevated ESR( erythrocyte sedimentation rate), which indicates the presence of an inflammatory process in the body. Other blood tests help identify rheumatoid factor and antibodies to the anti-cyclic citrulline peptide.
Although rheumatoid polyarthritis( symptoms, treatment, diagnosis, prevention - all this is still in the stage of study by specialists) is a fairly common violation, today there is no single-valued method for treating this disease. Drug therapy can only reduce inflammation in the joints, relieve pain and prevent or slow down the destruction of tissues.
After the discovery of the disease, rheumatoid polyarthritis, the causes, symptoms and treatment details of which should be described in detail by your doctor, medication is prescribed. Since most of the medicines used in this case cause serious side effects, specialists try to prescribe the least dangerous drugs first. Nevertheless, as the disease progresses, you will still need stronger medications - or a combination of several drugs.
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs relieve pain and reduce inflammation. Some of them are sold in pharmacies according to the rules of OTC.This, for example, ibuprofen and naproxen sodium. More effective medicines of this group are given by prescription. Their side effects may appear as ringing in the ears, gastritis, cardiac dysfunction, liver and kidney damage.
- Steroids. Corticosteroid drugs, such as prednisone, reduce inflammation and pain and slow the damage to the joints. Side effects include bone thinning, weight gain and diabetes. Doctors usually prescribe such medications to remove acute symptoms of the disease and recommend in the future to gradually abandon the adoption of corticosteroids.
- Basic anti-inflammatory drugs( disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs).If you are diagnosed with rheumatoid polyarthritis, treatment( drugs and procedures) can consist in slowing down the process of joint destruction and preventing damage to other tissues. For this purpose, basic anti-inflammatory medications are prescribed, among which methotrexate, leflunomide, hydroxychloroquine and sulfasalazine are most often used. Side effects include liver damage, suppression of bone marrow function and severe lung infections.
If you read about the symptoms and treatment of rheumatic polyarthritis in a book or on the Internet and for personal reasons do not want to contact a doctor( alas, it happens), try to cope with the ail with folk remedies - in any case, they do not even call suchserious side effects, like pharmacy medicines.
To treat joints, supporters of alternative medicine use evening primrose oil, black currant and borage, as well as biologically active food supplements with a high content of fish oil. All these substances can interact with various medications, so before using them, be sure to find out the opinion of a qualified therapist or rheumatologist.