Treatment and symptoms of arthritis and osteoarthritis

The treatment of joint damage - arthritis and osteoarthritis is complex. The earlier therapy is started, the less pronounced the pathological process will be. Pathology of the musculoskeletal system can occur at any age, in the context of existing chronic diseases, due to trauma or as a manifestation of congenital anomalies. Joint pathology requires not only traditional methods of treatment in the form of medication, physical therapy, but also lifestyle changes.

Difference between arthritis (left) and osteoarthritis (right) of the joints

Arthritis and Osteoarthritis - Differences

These two pathologies have a similar name due to the root of the word, which comes from the Latin word articulatio, which translates as an articulation. The ending -it means inflammation, and -osis - deformity. The name is due to the process that occurs in the joints.

Arthritis affects the synovial membrane along with blood vessels and nerve endings. Synovial fluid production is impaired. It develops at any age, it can occur in children as a manifestation of connective tissue diseases, autoimmune pathology. One or more joints are affected, in rare cases polyarthritis occurs.

Pain during physical activity in osteoarthritis of the knee joint

Osteoarthritis is characterized by the destruction of cartilage located on the surface of the bone that forms the joint. The cartilaginous tissue becomes thinner, the places of deformation are replaced by bone tissue. Formed in adulthood, it can be a consequence of injuries. It mainly affects large joints - knee, elbow, etc.

The first symptoms of arthritis are sharp pain that occurs during movement and at rest, stiffness from movement in the morning. In addition to local manifestations, this pathology is accompanied by general symptoms in the form of fever, general weakness, lethargy. In autoimmune diseases, other organs are affected - the heart, the kidneys.

With osteoarthritis in the early stages, there are no symptoms. Complaints are presented by patients in more advanced stages, there is pain during physical exertion, a crisis during movement, impaired movement. In the last stages, contractures appear.

Arthritis and osteoarthritis can be a complication of each other.

Which doctor should I contact?

If arthritis and osteoarthritis are suspected, treatment is carried out by specialists such as:

  • Surgeon - to examine the condition of the tissues.
  • A rheumatologist deals with autoimmune diseases.
  • Traumatologist - treats pathology caused by injuries.
  • Orthopedist - is involved in the rehabilitation of patients after a course of treatment.
Seeing a doctor if arthritis or osteoarthritis is suspected

Principles of effective joint treatment

Effective joint treatment is based on an integrated approach, the period of exacerbations includes the use of drugs with an anti-inflammatory effect. During the period of remission, physiotherapeutic methods, massages and gymnastics are prescribed. Osteoarthritis therapy is different in that it includes the use of chondroprotectors.

In arthritis, in addition to symptomatic treatment, etiotropic treatment should be prescribed. With the development of reactive arthritis against the background of infection, antibiotics are prescribed, with autoimmune diseases, hormonal agents are prescribed. Treatment may include antiviral agents, immunomodulators.

Patients may be given antibiotics to treat arthritis.

Arthritis and osteoarthritis are a pathology in which blood circulation and lymphatic flow are disturbed, so their effective treatment is based on the normalization of these processes, improving tissue nutrition.

Effective treatment of joints in the presence of synovitis against the background of arthritis and arthrosis is based on the use of anti-inflammatory drugs.

A mandatory step is to reduce the load on the affected limbs. This includes conservative methods - wearing orthopedic shoes, protecting joints from injury, normalizing weight, dosed physical activity.

How to cure osteoarthritis and arthritis? Osteoarthritis is a progressive disease. It cannot be completely cured, so the main task of therapy is to prevent further development of the deformity.

Arthritis that arose against the background of the underlying disease disappears after treating the pathology that caused the inflammation in the joint.

treatment methods

Treatment for osteoarthritis and arthritis of the foot is the same as for other joints. Be sure to wear proper shoes with arch support. When wearing high heels, flat shoes, the deformation will progress, other groups of joints and the spine will start to be involved in the process.

The main methods of treatment of joint pathology:

  • lifestyle correction;
  • orthopedic correction;
  • physiotherapy;
  • massage;
  • physiotherapy;
  • drug treatment;
  • surgical intervention.
Exercise options for joint pathology

non-drug methods

How to treat arthritis at home? Treatment of arthritis and arthrosis at home is carried out with compresses with dimethyl sulfoxide, bischofite or medical bile. All these substances can be purchased at a pharmacy.

  1. Bischofite - relieves inflammation, has a local warming effect. It is prescribed for the treatment of large joints, with deformity not complicated by synovitis.
  2. Medical bile has a warming and local absorption effect.
  3. Dimethylsulfoxide relieves inflammation, is absorbed by deep tissues.

You can apply anti-inflammatory ointments on your own. When arthritis is caused by autoimmune diseases, connective tissue pathology, gout, diet is of great importance in therapy. The diet is saturated with vegetables, fruits, fiber, excludes:

  • fried and fatty foods;
  • smoked meats;
  • canned food;
  • carbonated drinks;
  • alcohol.

Gouty arthritis also requires the exclusion of spices, hot spices, fatty meats, caviar, vegetables, coffee, tea, chocolate.

Joint health benefits:

  • pineapples;
  • cherry juice;
  • redhead;
  • lemon;
  • turmeric;
  • chilli pepper.
Lemon and Pineapple are Healthy Fruits for People Suffering from Arthritis and Osteoarthritis

For a patient who treats osteoarthritis at home, it is important to include jam and jelly in the diet. In the early stages, these dishes will serve as natural chondroprotectors and encourage cartilage restoration. The restriction is imposed on salt and mineral water.

The next step in home therapy is daily joint exercises and stretches. Small joint arthritis is prevented by activities in which the fine motor skills of the hands are involved - modeling, drawing. For the general improvement of the body are useful - cycling, swimming.

Medical treatment

Treatment of osteoarthritis with the help of drugs consists of the appointment of NSAIDs, chondroprotectors. Release forms - tablets, capsules, injections, ointments and gels. The oral release form has several contraindications, such as bronchial asthma, stomach ulcers.

Its long-term use can cause stomach bleeding. Ointments have no contraindications, but their effectiveness is less.

Dosage is prescribed by a doctor, usually take 1-2 tablets a day, propionic acid derivatives are taken no more than 1 tablet every 4-6 hours.

Hormonal drugs are injected into the joint cavity. They are prescribed for severe pain that is not relieved by NSAIDs. The most commonly prescribed are glucocorticoids.

Chondroprotectors - a group of drugs prescribed for the restoration of cartilage tissue. When using the oral form, they are used for a long course - up to 3 months, with intra-articular - up to 2 weeks. The main active ingredients are chondroitin, glucosamine and hyaluronic acid. Ointments with chondroprotectors are effective for the prevention of joint pathology.

Arthritis is treated by injecting a therapeutic substance with a laser through the skin. These procedures include phonophoresis and electrophoresis.

Phonophoresis - the device creates a targeted flow, which improves tissue permeability for drug delivery. In addition, the beam has a massage effect on the deep tissues, thus improving their nutrition, increasing blood circulation and reducing inflammation.

Phonophoresis procedure for knee joint arthritis

Electrophoresis is the action of an electric current that breaks down substances into ionized particles. The tissue is impregnated with drug, placed under oppositely charged electrodes. An electric field is created in the affected area, which allows the active substance to penetrate deep tissues. The number of such procedures varies up to 10.

Treatment of osteoarthritis with medications is effective in the early stages. In the future, drugs do not have the desired effect.


With osteoarthritis and arthritis, surgical treatment of the joints is indicated when movement in the joint is already impaired, the pain is bothersome all the time and is not interrupted by medication. The main operation is arthroplasty.

The puncture is used to examine synovial fluid, remove it, and administer medication.

Arthroscopy refers to research methods, but it can be therapeutic. With osteoarthritis, osteophytes are removed using an endoscope.

Arthroscopy - surgery for osteoarthritis of the knee joint

Osteotomy - excision of the bony edges to reduce the load on the diseased joint. Used for arthritis.

Osteoarthritis and arthritis prevention

To keep your joints healthy, you need to change your lifestyle. That is, establishing a diet, reducing body weight and exercising regularly. At the first pathological symptoms, specialist consultations, research and treatment are indicated.