ARTHRITIS – RHEUMATOID, OSTEOARTHRITIS AND CERVICAL SPINE
Arthritis is a medical term for a condition that causes inflammation of your joints and is a condition that affects about 1 in every 5 U.S. adults.There are more than 100 types of arthritis, but the most common types are Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis. These two conditions cause chronic pain and restricted mobility.
- Normal wear and tear of the body
- Autoimmune disorder where the organism immune system attacks the soft tissue in the joints
- Reduction of cartilage tissue
- Family history of arthritis
Osteoarthritis is one of the most common forms and happens due to the normal “wear and tear” of the joints during daily activities. This degenerative condition breaks down the protective cartilage that surrounds the ends of the bones, causing the bones to rub together. As the cartilage wears away the friction that happens when a person moves causes inflammation. It can be extremely painful especially when the cartilage is completely worn off and the condition “bone to bone” makes the bones rub together.
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder causing the body’s immune system to attack the body’s own cells and tissues. This causes inflammation in the lining of your joints making them swollen, stiff, warm and painful. Unlike Osteoarthritis, this type of chronic joint pain and stiffness can be mildly improved with gentle movements.
- Joint pain
Without treatment symptoms can progress and become more severe causing loss of range of motion, deformity in the affected joint or inability of the joint to support weight.
ARTHRITIS OF THE CERVICAL SPINE
This type of arthritis affects the cervical spine and the joints around. It can be referred to as cervical spondylosis, cervical osteoarthritis and neck arthritis.
The affected joints are called facet joints and are the ones who make it possible for the human body to bend or twist.
The chances of developing cervical spine arthritis increase with age. Approximately 9 in 10 adults over the age of 65 have some sort of cervical spondylosis.
Symptoms of Cervical Arthritis
- Pain around the shoulder blade, along the arm and/or in the fingers
- Muscle spasms in the neck and shoulders
- Stiffness in the neck
- Pain that gets worse when standing or sitting for too long, tilting the head back, sneezing, or coughing
- Muscle weakness that makes it hard to lift the arms or hold objects firmly
Diagnosing Cervical Spondylosis
During the medical examination, your doctor will ask questions about your symptoms and may also perform quick tests to check your muscle strength, reflexes, range of motion and how you walk. If cervical spine arthritis is suspected, imaging and/or nerve function tests may be ordered. This can include an X-ray, CT scan, MRI, myelogram, and electromyography (EMG).