Dr Sunitha Kayidhi dispels a few widespread misconceptions about Arthritis Condition.

One of the most prevalent types of physical impairment is arthritis (pain, activity limitation). Numerous life elements, including everyday tasks, leisure time, involvement in the workforce, and social activities, are impacted by the pain and incapacity associated with arthritis. Unfortunately, each illness generates a collection of myths significantly dissimilar from the truth. Clinical Immunologist and Consultant Rheumatologist Dr Sunitha Kayidhi, Yashoda Hospitals, Hyderabad, dispels a few widespread misconceptions about arthritis.

Myth: JOINT PAINS MEAN ARTHRITIS

Fact: There are other causes of pain around the joint, like bursitis, tendinitis, or trauma. Every pain near the joint is not arthritis.

Myth: ARTHRITIS IS A SINGLE DISEASE

Fact: Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid arthritis, Psoriatic arthritis, and Gout are common types of arthritis. In addition, autoimmune diseases like lupus, scleroderma, myositis, Sjogrens and vasculitis can also have arthritis as one of the symptoms.

Myth: ARTHRITIS IS LIMITED TO JOINTS

Fact: Arthritis-causing diseases can cause inflammation in the spine, tendons and ligaments. It can also involve vital organs like the eyes, lungs, skin, kidneys, and nerves. The type of organ involved varies depending on the type of arthritis one has.

Myth: ARTHRITIS IS A DISEASE OF ELDERLY

Fact: Osteoarthritis is the typical type of arthritis seen in older adults, which occurs due to the degeneration of cartilage due to ageing. Several types of arthritis, as described above, can affect any age, including children.

Myth: EXERCISE WORSENS ARTHRITIS

Fact: Exercise is essential in maintaining normal joint function in patients with arthritis. In fact, for some arthritis, exercise is one of the primary treatment modalities (e.g., Osteoarthritis, Ankylosing spondylitis. etc.). However, each person needs a different type of exercise depending on the type, severity or joints affected. Hence ask your doctor about what kind of exercise suits you.

Myth: HIGH URIC ACID MEANS ARTHRITIS

Fact:High uric acid does not cause every ache or joint pain. High uric acid is related to kidney disease, certain dietary factors, obesity, dehydration, and many other causes. Only one-third of those with high uric acid for an extended period (>10-15 years) develop arthritis called gout. Everyone with high uric acid may not be treated.

Myth: STEROIDS ARE THE ONLY TREATMENT FOR ARTHRITIS

Fact: Steroids are given for brief periods in the early stage of Arthritis Condition and may or may not be a part of treatment for everyone. Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) are essential treatments for patients with arthritis which helps in decreasing inflammation and arresting joint damage.

Myth: POSITIVE RHEUMATOID FACTOR MEANS RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS

Fact: Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a clinical diagnosis. Rheumatoid factor is a test used to diagnose RA and will be positive in 60-70% of patients. It can be positive in many other diseases and 5% of normal individuals. Hence consult a rheumatologist for an accurate diagnosis.

Myth: SOUR FOODS WORSEN ARTHRITIS

Fact: Sour foods like curd, tamarind, tomatoes, lemon, and other citrus fruits do NOT aggravate joint pains. Arthritis patients should continue to take these healthy foods enriched with antioxidants.

Myth: ARTHRITIS MEDICATION CAUSES A LOT OF SIDE EFFECTS

Fact: Most patients with arthritis tolerate the treatment well. At specific periods, testing needs to be monitored. If anyone has side effects with a particular drug, that drug can be stopped and replaced with another drug.

Myth: ARTHRITIS IS NOT TREATABLE

Fact: There is no cure for Arthritis Condition. However, with early diagnosis and proper treatment, arthritis can be treated, and people with arthritis can lead an everyday life as those without.

We can lower the risk of some types of arthritis and slow the advancement of those conditions by adopting a lifestyle that includes physical activity and a nutritious, balanced diet. Home Page

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