About 23% of American adults––approximately 53 million people––are living with arthritis. Left untreated, arthritis can significantly interfere with your mobility, making even simple tasks like walking the dog uncomfortable. Our family physicians at Physicians Medical Primary Care in San Jose, California, regularly diagnose and treat arthritis. If you’re living with chronic joint pain, request an appointment today by calling the office or using the online booking tool.
Arthritis is a blanket term used to describe a group of diseases that cause swelling and inflammation in one or more of your joints. There are more than 100 different types of arthritis, but the two most common are rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition that causes your immune system to attack the lining of your joints, or synovium.
Osteoarthritis occurs when cartilage, a soft cushion-like substance that pads your joints, begins to deteriorate. Over time, this causes your bones to rub up against one another, causing stiffness, pain, and general discomfort.
No matter the type of arthritis you’re living with, treatment is available. If you’re experiencing joint pain, make an appointment at Physicians Medical Primary Care today.
The most common symptoms of arthritis involve the joints. Depending on the type and severity of arthritis, you might experience:
As arthritis progresses, it’s also common to experience a decreased range of motion.
Arthritis affects people of all ages, races, and backgrounds. However, certain factors may increase your risk, including:
Your sex also plays a role. For example, women are more likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis, while men are more likely to develop gout, a type of arthritis caused by an increase of uric acid in your blood.
To diagnose arthritis, your Physicians Medical Primary Care doctor reviews your medical history, asks you questions about your symptoms, and does a physical exam. During the exam, your doctor checks your joints for redness, swelling, and warmth. They also ask you to perform a series of easy exercises to see how well your joints move.
If these tests don’t provide adequate information, your doctor might also order laboratory tests. The analysis of certain body fluids can help pinpoint the type of arthritis you’re suffering from.
Treatment for arthritis depends on the type of arthritis you have and the severity of your symptoms. Your doctor always works to relieve your uncomfortable symptoms and improve joint function.
If you have a mild or moderate case of arthritis, your doctor might recommend lifestyle changes like losing weight, eating a healthy diet, or exercising more regularly. If these methods of care don’t provide relief, you might benefit from over-the-counter painkillers, corticosteroid shots, or physical therapy. For severe cases of arthritis, surgery might be necessary.
Don’t let joint pain caused by arthritis prevent you from living your best life. Make an appointment at Physicians Medical Primary Care today by calling the office or using the online booking tool.