What is The Difference Between Arthritis And Osteoarthritis?

Arthritis And Osteoarthritis

What is The Difference Between Arthritis And Osteoarthritis?, Knee and Shoulder InstituteArthritis and osteoarthritis are frequently confused together. This is because they both belong to the same family of pathology – rheumatism. However, the two are very different with several distinct symptoms.

Osteoarthritis is a mechanical condition that is characterized by the slow and gradual wearing down of joint cartilage. Aging is a common risk factor where osteoarthritis is concerned. On the other hand, arthritis does not occur because of the normal wear and tear of bones. Instead, this condition takes place because of inflammation that results in the secretion of joint destroying substances.

Arthritis can be infectious, metabolic or genetic in nature. Thomas & Bigler Knee & Shoulder Institute, led by board certified orthopedic surgeons Dr. Steven C. Thomas and Dr. Gregory T. Bigler, provides orthopedic surgery to patients in Las Vegas, Nevada and also serving greater Pahrump, Bullhead City, Lake Havasu, Mesquite, NV, and surrounding locations.

Difference in Symptoms

A common symptom to both conditions is naturally pain in the joint. Painin osteoarthritis generally takes place when the joint is moving. It decreases when the joint is at rest. In the case of arthritis, moving the joint may reduce the intensity of pain. The pain is worst during night when the body is at rest. Patients with arthritis notice a warm sensation near the affected joint along with swelling and redness.

Difference in Causes

Aging is a primary cause of osteoarthritis. People in certain occupations have a higher likelihood of developing osteoarthritis as compared to others. This is because the joints (primarily wrists and elbows) in such occupation are being constantly used.

Obesity is another reason for osteoarthritis issues, especially in the hips and knees. On the other hand, arthritis is caused due to hereditary factors. Additionally, people with chemical imbalance or immune disorder are at a greater risk.

Difference in Diagnosis

The doctor will perform a clinical assessment of the situation for making a diagnosis. They can prescribe X-rays and blood tests that will help determine whether you suffer from arthritis or osteoarthritis. This is when the doctors would choose an appropriate treatment plan based on your diagnosis.

Difference in Treatment

Osteoarthritis treatment

Treatment depends on the particular situation of a patient. Symptoms of osteoarthritis are irreversible, but can be managed. Your doctor will determine the best treatment plan for you which may include the following:

  • Pain medications: Over the counter pain medications, such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and acetaminophen may be used for treating mild pain. Otherwise, your doctor would prescribe stronger medication.
  • Surgery: You may need to undergo a joint replacement surgery if other treatment options don’t lessen the pain.

Rheumatoid Arthritis treatment

Most RA medications have side effects making it important to get regular doctor checkups. If your joint and pain function worsen after trying exercise, medicine, and lifestyle changes, you should consider joint replacement surgery.

These are a few tips for improving the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis:

  • Rest whenever tired
  • Use walkers, splints, canes, and other devices
  • Exercise regularly
  • Eat a balanced diet
  • Maintain a healthy weight

Board certified orthopedic surgeons Dr. Thomas and Dr. Bigler receive patients from Las Vegas, Nevada and also serving greater Pahrump, Bullhead City, Lake Havasu, Mesquite, NV, and nearby areas for orthopedic surgery.

Contact Board Certified Surgeons Dr. Bigler or Dr. Thomas at the Knee and Shoulder Institute in Las Vegas, NV to Schedule an Appointment:

If you would like to schedule an appointment or learn more about the Knee and Shoulder Institute procedures & treatments performed by Las Vegas, Nevada board-certified surgeons Steven C. Thomas, MD and Gregory T. Bigler, MD. Contact the office today click here.

Serving patients from and around greater Las Vegas, Lake Havasu, Bullhead City, Mesquite, Pahrump, Nevada

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