What is Arthritis?

Arthritis is a general term used to refer to inflammation and swelling of the joints. People with joint disease suffer from arthritis symptoms; however, the term “arthritis” is often used interchangeably with the term “joint disease.”

The two main types of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Osteoarthritis, also called degenerative joint disease, occurs over time and causes the protective cartilage that cushions your joints to break down. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder that affects the lining of your joints and can also negatively impact other areas of your health. If you have joint disease, your arthritis symptoms can range from mild to severe and may include:

Joint pain, aching, or tenderness
Decreased range of motion or disability
Formation of bone spurs
Joint deformity

What Causes Arthritis?

The cause of arthritis varies based on the type of arthritis you are living with. The most common type of joint disease, osteoarthritis, is caused by the repetitive wear-and-tear of weight-bearing joints. This type of joint disease develops slowly over time as cartilage deteriorates from the friction of joint movement.

Meanwhile, rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder that causes your body to attack the healthy lining that protects your joints. This specific type of joint disorder not only causes joint pain, but can impact the functioning of various body systems like your eyes, lungs, heart and skin. The exact cause of rheumatoid arthritis is unknown; however, research has shown that there may be a genetic component to this disorder.

Arthritis Treatment & Management

Telluride Regional Medical Center can treat arthritis symptoms in several ways. Arthritis medications like steroids, cortisone injections, lubrication injections, or biologic agents to reduce inflammation and pain can treat joint disease. Outside of taking medication, regular physical therapy, maintaining a healthy weight, and heat and cold therapy are effective ways to manage joint pain. While there is no cure for arthritis, the primary goal of our physicians is to help you manage your arthritis symptoms to improve your quality of life.

Contact Telluride Regional Medical Center

Telluride Regional Medical Center knows that living with arthritis can be painful and difficult. Our patient-centered approach to healthcare starts by listening to your needs and developing a specialized treatment plan to manage and treat your arthritis symptoms. If you are looking for a new medical home, contact Telluride Regional Medical Center near you and schedule an appointment today.

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