PUNE: There are nearly 100 types of arthritis but there is an urgent need for awareness regarding the symptoms for early detection in the early stages, says doctors in the city.
They were speaking on the eve of World Arthritis Day celebrated on October 12.
Speaking about Pediatric Rheumatic diseases, Dr Rachna Hasija, Pediatric Rheumatologist at Surya Hospitals said that these were inflammatory and autoimmune diseases of childhood. “A Pediatric Rheumatologist looks at children with systemic and/or musculoskeletal features of acute and chronic manifestations of inflammatory diseases, distinguishing them from other conditions which may mimic these closely. Many of these diseases have arthritis as a manifestation,” said Dr Hasija.
She added that the treatment in such children differs from children with arthritis due to other autoimmune/ inflammatory/ infectious conditions after a point.
“These children may vary in age from a few months to first appearance in their adolescence. These may/ may not have definite tests. Symptoms are usually joint pain, swelling, stiffness and limping associated with or without systemic features like fever or rash. Inflammation in the eyes and bowels may be silent and may have to be screened for. If these children remain undetected or untreated, they eventually have disabilities in childhood and adult life. Some may succumb to complications like cardiac inflammation, especially those with systemic arthritis,” she said.
Speaking about Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), Dr Neeraj Adkar from Saishree Hospital said that in this type, multiple joints are involved and it can occur or be present at any age. “Typically, a person gets early morning stiffness, joints are painful and the pain goes down as the day progresses. RA is more commonly seen in females. It is an autoimmune disorder where a person’s immune system works against his/ her joint capsule/ synovium. When your RA flares up, it’s important to prevent damage to your joints,” said Dr Adkar.
He further explained that there is another type of arthritis called the Gout Arthritis which affects the middle age and elderly population.
“In this type, the blood level of serum uric acid is raised. Although joints swell around the ankle and foot, knee or joint regions are involved. To prevent Gout Arthritis, a patient should take the recommended diet from doctors and gout patients should avoid liquor,” Dr Adkar said.