The key difference between arthralgia and arthritis is that arthralgia is a medical condition that triggers pain in the joint and normally has no inflammatory cause, while arthritis is a medical condition that triggers pain in the joint and normally has an inflammatory cause.
Joint pain is very common in older age. It can also be present at a young age. Different types of joint pain may include knee pain, shoulder pain, hip pain, foot pain, hand pain, elbow pain, and neck pain. Joint pain can occur in one joint or more than one joint at the same time, such as knees and hips. Arthralgia and arthritis are two medical conditions that cause joint pain.
1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is Arthralgia
3. What is Arthritis
4. Similarities – Arthralgia and Arthritis
5. Arthralgia vs Arthritis in Tabular Form
6. Summary – Arthralgia vs Arthritis
What is Arthralgia?
Arthralgia is a medical condition that triggers pain in the joint and normally has no inflammatory cause. Some doctors consider arthralgia to be a precursor to arthritis. In a person with arthralgia, the inflammation is either not present or not the underlying cause of the joint pain. According to MeSH (Medical Subject Headings), the term arthralgia should only be used when the joint pain condition is non-inflammatory. It has different causes. Among its many causes, some important ones include overuse, sprains, injury, gout, tendonitis, number of infectious diseases such as rheumatic fever and chicken pox. The symptoms of this condition may include back pain, loss of spine flexibility, inflammation of the eyes, lungs, and heart valves, swelling and stiffness, and sacroiliac joints.
Moreover, arthralgia can be diagnosed through physical examination and clinical evaluation. Furthermore, treatment options for arthralgia include rest, warm baths, exercises, massage, stretching, and pain medications. The more advanced treatments include joint replacement therapy for severely damaged joints, immunosuppressants for immune dysfunction, and antibiotics for infections.
What is Arthritis?
Arthritis is a medical condition that triggers pain in the joint and normally has an inflammatory cause. Arthritis is the swelling and tenderness of one or more joints. Most forms of arthritis occur due to a fault in the immune system that causes the body to attack its own tissues in the joints. This can be inherited genetically. Other forms can be caused by problems with the immune system or by a metabolic condition like gout. All these conditions cause inflammation in the joint at the end. The symptoms of arthritis may include pain, stiffness, swelling, redness, and decreased range of motion.
Moreover, arthritis can be diagnosed through laboratory tests analyzing fluids like blood and urine, joint fluids, and imaging tests such as X-rays, CT scans, MRIs, and ultrasounds. Furthermore, arthritis is treated through medications like NSAIDs (non-steroidal non-inflammatory drugs), counterirritants, steroids, DMARDs (disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs), physical therapy, and surgery (joint replacement, joint repair, and joint fusion).
What are the Similarities Between Arthralgia and Arthritis?
- Arthralgia and arthritis are two medical conditions that cause joint pain.
- In some situations, arthralgia is considered to be a precursor to arthritis.
- Advanced age, injury, and obesity are risk factors for both conditions.
- They are treated through specific medications and surgeries.
What is the Difference Between Arthralgia and Arthritis?
Arthralgia is a medical condition that triggers the pain in the joint and normally has no inflammatory cause, while arthritis is a medical condition that triggers the pain in the joint and normally has an inflammatory cause. Thus, this is the key difference between arthralgia and arthritis. Furthermore, the risk factors for arthralgia include advanced age, obesity, participating in repetitive activities that put pressure on joints, and previous injury and surgery. On the other hand, the risk factors for arthritis include family history, older age, sex (women affected more), previous injury, and obesity.
The below infographic presents the differences between arthralgia and arthritis in tabular form for side-by-side comparison.
Summary – Arthralgia vs Arthritis
Joint pain is very common in advanced age. Arthralgia and arthritis are two medical conditions that cause joint pain. Some medical professionals consider arthralgia as the precursor to arthritis in some situations. Arthralgia causes pain in joints and normally has no inflammatory cause while arthritis causes pain in joints and normally has an inflammatory cause. So, this summarizes the difference between arthralgia and arthritis.
1. “Arthralgia.” Arthralgia | Johns Hopkins Medicine, 8 Aug. 2021.
2. “Arthritis.” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 15 Sept. 2021.
1. “Dengue features” By Armanjain011 – Own work (CC BY-SA 4.0) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis – Normal joint Osteoarthr — Smart-Servier” By Laboratoires Servier – Smart Servier website:Flickr (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia
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