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Rheumatoid arthritis


Introduction

Rheumatoid arthritis is the second most common form of Arthritis. It is an inflammatory disease-though involved with joints, it is not degenerative.

It is an autoimmune disease in which the body's immune system (the body's way of fighting infection) attacks healthy joints, tissues and organs. The natural defence mechanism of the body recognizes some component of the joint lining (synovium) as an enemy and attacks it. When an immunological attack is taking place it is normally accompanied by inflammatory reaction. Inflammation of the synovial membrane may spread to other parts of the joint and the inflamed tissue may grow into the cartilage surrounding the bone ends, causing it to deteriorate. When the cartilage disintegrates, scar tissue forms between the bone ends, fusing the joint, making it rigid and difficult to move.



Normal Joint Joint with Rheumatoid arthritis


In a normal joint (where two bones come together), the muscle, bursa (sacs of fluid that protect moving muscles, skin and tendons) and tendons (tissue that attaches muscle to bone) support the bone and help the joint to move. The synovial membrane releases a slippery fluid into the joint space. Cartilage covers the ends of the bone to absorb shocks and to keep the bones from rubbing together when the joint moves.


With rheumatoid arthritis, the joint becomes inflamed and the synovial membrane becomes thicker. This causes the joint to swell, causing damage to bone and cartilage. Over time, the bone and cartilage gets destroyed. Space between the joint gets smaller, and the joint loses shape and moves
Normal Joint rheumatoid Arthritis

Another reason is that the inflammation in the joint is the result of persistent infection. The organism responsible for such infection has not yet been determined but there are other cases of inflammatory conditions being caused by condition of this type.

Rheumatoid arthritis is also related to a group of substances known as prostaglandins. These are a special class of unsaturated fatty acids, which have a high level of physiological activity. They are involved in various bodily functions including ovulation, maintenance of blood pressure, smooth muscle stimulation etc. it is known that inhibition of the synthesis of certain prostaglandins in the body is affected by some anti-inflammatory drugs and also by the mussel extract. Quite possibly, these prostaglandins are influential in the inflammatory process involved in rheumatoid arthritis.

Rheumatoid arthritis is not a condition restricted to the elderly or athletes. It has no age barriers and can even affect young children. The severity of this disease can vary from the case of a person who merely suffers mild pain and stiffness in certain joints for a short period, to the case where the person is bedridden, has distorted limbs and is maintained on constant drug therapy just to control the situation.


How is Rheumatoid arthritis diagnosed?


Several laboratory tests along with a complete physical examination, a health history and X-Rays help in the diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis. A test called the erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) indicates the presence of any inflammation in the body. In this test a small blood sample is drawn; then the depth that the red blood cells sink to, in a tube in 1 hour is recorded.

Another test done with the blood sample helps to determine the presence of rheumatoid factor, an abnormal antibody present in most people who have rheumatoid arthritis. In normal conditions the presence of an antibody is nil.


What is the outlook for Rheumatoid arthritis?


Several laboratory tests along with a complete physical examination, a health history and X-Rays help in the diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis. A test called the erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) indicates the presence of any inflammation in the body. In this test a small blood sample is drawn; then the depth that the red blood cells sink to, in a tube in 1 hour is recorded.

Another test done with the blood sample helps to determine the presence of rheumatoid factor, an abnormal antibody present in most people who have rheumatoid arthritis. In normal conditions the presence of an antibody is nil.

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to learn about the New Zealand Green Lipped Mussel Extract (GLME) - a clinially proven dietary supplement that gives relief from Osteo arthritis. Disclaimer: This is not to provide medical advice. All content including text, graphics, images and information is for general informational purposes only.

Disclaimer: This is not to provide medical advice. All content including text, graphics, images and information is for general informational purposes only.
  Treatment Rheumatoid arthritis
The x rays will tell the doctor what is happening to the bones and joints inside your body.
 


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