Have you ever seen your parents or grandparents cringe in pain because of their joints? Or maybe witness a co-worker rub his or her knee or hands because of inflammation and pain?
Arthritis is a condition of the joints wherein there is inflammation. It has so many variations. Arthritis occurs in people who have not enough cartilage in their joints to absorb the shock and friction as they move. Breakdown of the cartilage in the joints causes this to happen. This then becomes very painful because of the constant rubbing of the uncushioned joints. Stiffness amy also be experienced by the arthritis patient.
The breakdown of the joints may be caused by broken bones, an autoimmune disease, viral or bacterial infection, or the â€œwear and tearâ€ of the joints themselves. This may happen to men or women. There are so many variations of arthritis. It may be gout, gonoccocal arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, psoriatic arthritis, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, nongonococcal bacterial arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, scleroderma, Reiter syndrome (reactive arthritis), or rheumatoid arthritis. The most common of these is called osteoarthritis. Signs and symptoms of arthritis are morning stiffness, warmth and skin redness in or around the joint area, pain and swelling in the joint, and lessened movement of the joint. Your doctor will subject you to a physical exam wherein fluid will be extracted from the joint, your range of motion will be assessed, and any red, warm, and tender joints will be identified.
In treating arthritis, medications are needed. Here are some of the prescribed arthritis medicine for patients who have varied types of arthritis:
This type of arthritis medicine is your common pain reliever. Arthritis involves pain and analgesics help in relieving that pain. Many pain relievers are OTC or over-the-counter drugs. Some examples of analgesics are ibuprofen, codeine, acetaminophen, aspirin, ketoprofen, naproxen, oxycodone, and propoxyphene. It is better for you to have these prescribed by your doctor so any one can be assessed first before combining them with any other arthritis medicine.
2. BRM (Biological Response Modifiers)
This arthritis medicine is also called Biologic DMARDS or Biologic Disease Modifying Antirheumatic Drugs. These are engineered drugs that make your body increase the production of your bodyâ€™s substances that fight arthritis infections. This can also be used to treat cancer and other diseases. Side effects of Biologic DMARDS are diarrhea, bleeding, rashes, nausea, vomiting, chills, muscle aches, fever, swelling, loss of appetite, and weakness. Some side effects are very severe for some patients that the patient should stay in the hospital during medical treatment. However, some side effects usually go away when you stop taking the medicine. Some examples of this arthritis medicine are etanercept, anakinra, adalimumab, infliximab, and abatacept.
3. DMARDS (Disease Modifying Antirheumatic Drugs)
DMARD is the type of arthritis medicine that is slow acting. It takes care of the deformities that severe rheumatoid arthritis gives you. These are commonly used in combination therapy. DMARD also prevents the further progression of the joint deterioration when used for long periods of time, with varied doses. Examples are hydroxychloroquine, gold thioglucose, sulfasalazine, leflunomide, penicillamine, infliximab, auranofin, aurothiglucose, and axathioprine.
4. Fibromyalgia medications
Fibromyalgia medication is an arthritis medicine that is given in varied doses to patients because fibromyalgia symptoms manifest differently. Examples of this medicine are venlafaxine, citalopram, desipramine, fluoxetine, imipramine, sertraline, and paroxetine.
This arthritis medicine is prescribed as an anti-inflammatory medicine. Glucocorticoids are advised to be taken every other day or once a day. Some examples are prednisone, dexamethasone, and prednisolone.
6. Gout medications
7. NSAID (Non-Steroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs)
NSAIDs are also a type of arthritis medicine that targets inflammation in arthritis and in other affected tissues as well. Some side effects are bloating, heartburn, stomach upset, and abdominal pain. Some of these are salsalate, fenoprofen, tolmetin, diclofenac, etodolac, and celecoxib.
8. Osteoporosis medications
Osteoporosis is the condition wherein the boned become brittle. The bone density decreases and therefore, the bones weaken. This is the perfect condition for arthritis to develop. Treating osteoporosis could very well prevent arthritis as well. Some osteoporosis drugs are risedronate, raloxifene, calcitonin, ibandronate, and alendronate.
Arthritis is a very difficult condition to endure everyday that is why arthritis medicine is prescribed. Arthritis medicine is the main source of relief for arthritis patients. In order to effectively treat arthritis, lifestyle changes are very much recommended. You should have low-impact exercises, strength training, and flexibility training as well. Therapy that includes, water therapy, massage, splints, and heat orice are also recommended to treat this condition. It would also help is you maintain an ideal weight, avoid stress, avoid being in the same position for a long period of time, and make activities easier for you to do. If arthritis is very severe, surgical procedures such as arthroplasty (repair of the damaged joint) and total joint replacement are performed. These should be done to avoid complications like long-term pain, inability or difficulty to do activities of daily living, and disability.
Work with your doctor to make sure that arthritis is prevented or treated at the soonest possible time, especially if you have arthritis running in your family.