Autoimmune Arthritis is a group of arthritis where a person’s immune system attacks itself. Rheumatoid Arthritis and Psoriatic Arthritis are the most common form of Autoimmune Arthritis.
There are various types of Autoimmune Arthritis:
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a type of inflammatory arthritis and autoimmune disease. RA disease is characterized by chronic joint inflammation (in the fingers, hands, knees, feet, for example).
1. Rheumatoid Arthritis
2. Psoriatic Arthritis
3. Ankylosing Spondylosis
4. Juvenile Arthritis, also known as Juvenile RA
5. Rheumatoid arthritis
Symptoms of Autoimmune Arthritis vary depend on the specific underlying arthritis type like:
3. Joint pain/Stiffness
4. Weight loss
6. Reduced range of motion
9. Dry Mouth
10. Chest pain
11. Deformed joints
12. Hard bumps of tissue (nodules) under the skin on your arms
13. Difficulty sleeping
14. Eye inflammation, dry eyes, itchy eyes, eye discharge
Rheumatic Arthritis is a chronic disease affecting over 1.3 million Americans and as much as of the worldwide population.
Specific symptoms vary between types of autoimmune arthritis:
Psoriatic Arthritis can cause a condition called enthesititis, tender spots on areas where ligaments and tendons connect to bones.
Autoimmune Arthritis can be treated by specialist doctors called Rheumatologists.
Diagnostic tests for autoimmune arthritis may include:
1. Imaging scans such as X-rays, CT scans or MRI scans to identify areas of joint damage.
2. Blood testing such as RBC, ESR and Rheumatoid factor.
3. Tissue samples can confirm conditions such as psoriasis.
Mild forms can benefit from NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications). For other types, doctors might prescribe DMARDs (disease modifying anti rheumatic drugs.
If DMARDs are not effective then Biologic Agents can be used.
2. Lifestyle changes:
Exercises like low impact Tai chi, Yoga, Pilates, Stretching, Walking, Water exercises etc. can be hugely beneficial for relieving pain and joint stiffness.
Anti-inflammatory diet: Researchers have identified certain foods that can help control inflammation.
Stress Management: Stress can flare up symptoms. Relaxing techniques maybe helpful.
Weight reduction: Extra weight on joints puts stresses joints.