Arthritis vs Osteoarthritis
Arthritis is inflammation of joints. Arthritis is a blanket term which includes all types of arthritis like osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, Psoriatic arthritis, and gout.
Osteoarthritis is a very common joint condition. Women are more prone to symptomatic osteoarthritis than men. Females get it three times more commonly than males. It usually sets in around 50 years of age. Osteoarthritis occurs due to wear and tear. When it sets in spontaneously, without any previous joint disorders, it is called primary osteoarthritis. When it occurs as a result of another joint disease it is called secondary osteoarthritis. Joint injuries and diseases like hemochromatosis give rise to secondary osteoarthritis.
Osteoarthritis usually starts with a single joint. There is pain on movement. The pain becomes worse in the evenings. There is a dull aching pain while the joint is at rest and a sharp pain on movement. The range of motion is limited, and there is joint tenderness. Bony swellings called “Heberden’s nodes” occur. Joints become stiff in the morning and become more mobile with movement. Joints are unstable and prone to dislocations and ligament injuries. Osteoarthritis progresses to involve multiple joints overtime. Most commonly affected joints in multiarticular osteoarthritis are distal inter-phalangeal joints, thumb metacarpo-phalangeal joints, cervical spine, lumbar spine, and knees.
The x-rays of joints show loss of joint space, sclerosis under the joint cartilage, and marginal osteophytes. In some patients, CRP can be slightly elevated. Regular pain killers, anti-inflammatory drugs, low dose tricyclics, weight reduction, walking aids, supportive foot ware, physiotherapy, and joint replacement are a few treatment methods.
What is the difference between Arthritis and Osteoarthritis?
• Arthritis is inflammation of joints, and osteoarthritis is a type of arthritis.
• Osteoarthritis is a very common joint condition that occurs due to wear and tear.