What is a joint? Joint diseases, diagnosis and treatment
We often hear the phrase "sore joints" from older people and not only. This problem is quite relevant, as many complain of such pathologies. Joint pain is often attributed to climate change, physical fatigue or magnetic storms. However, the reason lies completely different. Dealing with this on your own will be quite difficult, so it is recommended to come to an appointment with a specialist. Unpleasant sensations can manifest themselves in completely different ways: slight pain, crunching, numbness, sinking, burning, etc. So, what are joints, the main causes of pain, and treatment methods will be discussed in this article.
Before turning to the main point and talking about the causes of pain and how to overcome them, it is necessary to understand the terms. The human musculoskeletal system consists of several parts: muscles, bones, ligaments and joints.What are joints? Movable joints of bones of the skeleton. Joint diseases are the most common among other pathologies of the musculoskeletal system. These diseases are very dangerous and often lead to disability.
There is a certain classification that divides the pathologies into two large groups: arthritis and arthrosis. The first are diseases of an inflammatory nature. The second diseases result from degenerative-dystrophic processes. In addition to these species, sometimes a third one is added: these are the states when tumor tissue develops. There is also a group of diseases that are provoked by other diseases of the musculoskeletal system. As an example, osteoporosis is distinguished, characterized by a decrease in bone density.
Diseases of human joints can be very diverse, we will examine in more detail each of them below. It is worth noting that rheumatoid and infectious are the most common among arthritis. The treatment of such diseases is not always effective, therefore, emphasis should be placed on prevention.
Joints - one of the most problematic parts of the musculoskeletal system.To successfully cope with diseases, it is necessary to clearly know all sorts of reasons, or at least the main ones. This information will help an ordinary person to understand that everything is not so simple.
Causes of disease of the joints of the hands and other limbs:
- Infections. Especially dangerous are tuberculosis and streptococcus. They affect the articular tissues, which invariably leads to inflammation and the development of arthritis. The pathogen often spreads in the joint fluid, but sometimes acts through toxins trapped in the blood.
- Mechanical criterion. In terms of popularity and prevalence, this factor is not inferior to infectious. Chronic damage to the musculoskeletal system sooner or later leads to arthritis and arthrosis. Exercise only makes things worse.
- Allergy. Oddly enough, pain in the joints can occur for this reason. This is explained by the fact that immune cells are particularly sensitive to allergens. In most cases, allergies attack a person at the same time as the infection.
- Endocrine disorders. Diseases of the spine and joints occur as a result of problems with mineral metabolism.Because of this, bone tissue and cartilage are destroyed, which leads to unpleasant consequences.
- Violation of the blood supply. Articular tissues do not receive enough blood, and therefore degenerative changes occur, that is, arthrosis. In this situation, the likelihood of infection also increases.
Some doctors identify malnutrition, hypothermia, the sex of the patient, genetic predisposition, etc. among the causes of pain in the joints. However, all of the above are only risk factors, but not valid reasons.
Signs of disease
Understanding the cause of the pain, the specialist will not solve all the questions and will not make an accurate diagnosis. More information is needed on the joints. Symptoms of disease - just what you need to know. The following common features are distinguished:
- pain in the joints, both in motion and at rest;
- limited mobility, stiffness in movements;
- skin at the site of change may turn red, swelling will appear. The patient will not feel well, the temperature will rise, there will be a deformation of the bone tissue;
- crunch during movements.
It must be said that the specific disease is characterized by its own symptoms, and they may differ significantly from the above. If we talk about children, they also suffer joint pain. The most common cause is a congenital ailment characterized by an underdevelopment of the hip bone. In most of these cases, dislocation of the joint is observed.
To learn about this disease, you must carefully look after the baby. The clubfoot, the crunch and the effort to walk on socks utterly determine the problem.
Diseases of the knee
Any inflammation is fraught with danger. Many people are mistaken, claiming that only soft tissue is subject to inflammation. In fact, much more often such ills are formed in the mobile joints of the skeleton. What diseases of the knee are most common? About half of people suffering from such diseases suffer from knee arthritis. This is due to the fact that a heavy load falls daily on a person’s knees, and not every organism can withstand it. According to statistics, the majority of patients are women over the age of 30.
Consider the main causes of diseases of the knee joints:
- incorrect position of the bones, respectively, and incorrect distribution of the load;
- frostbite of the feet or hypothermia;
- allergic reaction;
- the presence of infection in the body;
- tuberculosis, fungus, sore throat, etc.
Determining the cause of arthritis is quite problematic, as the inflammation progresses gradually. Before the appearance of painful sensations it is very difficult to draw conclusions. The most severe form of the disease of the knee joint is phlegmonous with a breakthrough of pus in the thighs and the spread of infection.
Signs of Arthritis of the Joint
Let us consider in more detail precisely this disease, since it is most often encountered in practice. The disease is quite multifaceted, and there are a huge number of symptoms that will help determine it. We will talk about the main signs of the disease of the knee joint:
- decreased mobility due to knee pain, inflammation and swelling;
- heaviness in the leg, difficulty in moving;
- redness of the skin in the knee area, fever;
- chills, increased sweating, fever;
- weakness of the body, incessant feeling of lethargy, loss of appetite;
- bulging of the patella due to internal inflammation.
Symptoms can be enumerated as much as you like, they are not all met at the same time, but when at least one appears, you should immediately visit a specialist. Remember: the earlier you go to the doctor, the easier it will be to undergo treatment.
Stages of development of the disease
There are three stages of pathology of the knee joints: initial, early and advanced. At the first stage, the patient has not yet developed arthritis, but a painful symptom occurs. It is worth noting that the first stage goes into the second within 6-7 hours, so almost certainly the patient will have arthritis at the time of the doctor's appointment.
The second stage is already characterized by certain features. The patient feels the growth of the bone, the cartilage begins to harden, the capsule thickens, inflammation develops. Often patients turn to a specialist at this stage. Until the disease has passed to the last stage, it can be dealt with.
The third stage means the chronic form of the disease - neglected arthritis. This happens when the patient ignores the pain and pulls to the last. Symptoms at this stage can be distinguished: the destruction of cartilage, the appearance of bone growths, scarring of tissues, change in leg size, it shortens or, on the contrary, lengthens.In the end, all signs lead to disability. Arthritis in the knee joint develops very quickly, so it is very important to stop the disease at the first or at the very least the second stage. Then it will be too late, and the negative consequences can not be avoided.
Information about joint diseases
Painful sensations in the movable joints of the bones of the skeleton arise for completely different reasons. In most cases, pathological processes have a negative effect.
So, the name of the diseases of the joints and a brief description:
- Rheumatic arthritis. The most serious disease resulting from the attack of viruses on the human body. Large joints are usually affected, symmetrically, that is, two elbows or any other joints at once. The patient feels weak in the body, body temperature rises, fever is observed.
- Arthrosis This disease is characterized by the appearance of pathological processes that lead to the partial or complete destruction of cartilage. The symptoms are almost identical, but there is one significant difference. In case of arthrosis, the affected area hurts only during movement, and in case of arthritis even in a state of rest.
- Gout. Pathology develops mainly in older people.In the body there is a violation of calcium and salt exchanges, as a result of which growths appear on the joints. Distinctive property - painful sensations at night.
- Rupture of the meniscus. Pretty terrible injury associated with the violation of the integrity of the knee. When receiving such damage, the patient feels severe pain in both the knee and behind him. When moving, you can hear the characteristic crunch, indicating injury.
- Problems with the nervous system. Pain in the joints can also occur when the central nervous system is disturbed. In this case, you must first deal with the root cause, and the discomfort then pass.
Of course, this is not the whole list of pathologies that are the causes of pain in the joints, however, the most basic ones are presented here. What ways to solve the problem, the doctor will prompt after a thorough examination and diagnosis.
Diagnosis of joint diseases
In order to accurately determine what kind of disease a patient has, a specialist needs to conduct a series of studies. During the first reception, the doctor conducts a preliminary external examination, identifying problem areas of the patient.Then follows an obligatory referral to radiography, the results of which can already be the first to draw conclusions. Sometimes the doctor immediately sends the patient to a more specialized procedure - arthrography.
If after this the specialist cannot make an accurate diagnosis, he assigns additional measures. Quite often, cartilage biopsy, thermography, computed tomography, ultrasound are used. After determining the diagnosis, it is necessary to prescribe therapy. The patient is advised to follow the treatment program, as it is in his interest. It is better to seek help from qualified doctors, because the problem of diseases of the joints, arthritis, and arthrosis is a serious problem.
Ways of treatment. Conservative method
After identifying the disease, the doctor prescribes therapy. In each case, it will be different, because the treatment depends entirely on the pathology. Traditionally, there are three methods of therapy: conservative, surgical and alternative. Let us consider in more detail each of them.
What are joints? Simply put, this is the basis of human movement,and diseases of the musculoskeletal system adversely affect human health in general. The therapeutic method is suitable for the treatment of virtually all diseases associated with the joints. Depending on the direction of action, drugs can be divided into two groups: etiotropic and symptomatic. The first affect the cause of the disease. For example, if a person has arthritis caused by an infection, the doctor prescribes antibiotics.
Symptomatic medications are designed to cope with signs of the disease. The basis of this group consists of anti-inflammatory drugs that relieve pain. For treatment, both oral tablets and solutions for injections are used. It is worth noting that in addition to drugs, the conservative method of therapy includes physical therapy, massage, etc.
When conservative methods do not help, you have to turn to surgery. The operation is also done in advanced cases. Surgical intervention is necessary when nothing else helps. Sometimes operations are performed to eliminate severe symptoms.This is done to make life easier for the patient.
The most popular procedures are arthroplasty and arthrodesis. In the first case, the patient is restored motor function, which helps to improve the quality of his life. Arthrodesis is characterized by fixation in a certain position. If the diseases go to the most extreme stage, then an operation is needed to replace the joint with an artificial one. Sometimes, when pains worsen, surgeons suggest to immobilize the joint with a splint or bandage.
At all times, people used alternative methods of treatment, and there are many cases where everything ended well, and the disease receded. People have always trusted traditional medicine, and when traditional methods become powerless, it is time to resort to other methods. Popular treatment of diseases of the joints has recently become widespread. This is due to the fact that now the plant and natural remedies are softer and cause a little side effects.
Alternative methods have anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, analgesic effects.Most often not one herb is used, but a whole collection, which contains ten or more components. The most popular and effective mixtures:
- lemon balm, pine buds and eucalyptus;
- violet, St. John's wort and hawthorn;
- mint, fennel seeds, linden;
- chamomile, thyme, hops, St. John's wort
Method of preparation one: take 2-3 tablespoons of herbal mixtures and pour boiling water (400 ml). Should be taken several times a day before meals. In addition to fees, there are plenty of other popular methods, but decoctions are considered the most effective.
To successfully cope with diseases of the joints, it is necessary to follow a special diet. The diet, oddly enough, affects the metabolism, the structure of connective tissue and inflammatory immunity.
A specific nutritional program is linked to the type of disease:
- gout is better to increase the intake of cereals and fluids and reduce the consumption of meat and fish;
- With osteoporosis, it is not recommended to eat all foods rich in calcium. These include fish, seafood, etc .;
- if you have rheumatoid arthritis, you need to limit the intake of carbohydrates and salt.
People who have problems with excess weight, you must follow a low-calorie diet.This will help reduce body weight, and with it the load on the musculoskeletal system.
In this article we answered the question of what joints are. In addition, they talked about the causes of pain and methods of treatment. Now it is worth noting the importance of preventive measures. To prevent osteoarthritis, you need to move more. Swimming will be an ideal option, as the weight of a person in water decreases during active work of muscles.
You should give up bad habits, in particular alcohol and cigarettes. Because of them, metabolism can be disturbed, leading to diseases of the musculoskeletal system. To cope with infectious and inflammatory processes, it is necessary to immediately eliminate the center of pathology.
It is very important to carry out preventive measures from a young age, because if the disease of the joints goes too far, neither traditional medicine nor folk medicine will help.