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Disease of Bones and Joints: Rheumatoid Arthritis, Osteoporosis and Gout

Disorders affecting the bones and joints can range from a traumatic leg fracture to the gradual onset of arthritis in the hands.

Disease of Bones and Joints

Disorders affecting the bones and joints can range from a traumatic leg fracture to the gradual onset of arthritis in the hands. Bone and joint conditions can cause chronic pain as well as disability without proper treatment. It is much easier to move when your joints are healthy, such as your wrists, shoulders, knees, ankles and finger joints. In addition, bones like the humerus (upper arm) and femur (thighbone) allow movement. As important as a bone's main function is its secondary function. They protect your organs, such as the skull, which protects the brain. Blood is produced in the bone marrow. Calcium and a hormone that regulates blood sugar are stored in bones along with minerals. The many ways in which bones contribute to physical well-being, bone diseases can cause a lot of damage to your entire body.

Bone Disease

In terms of bone diseases, those who suffer from osteoporosis and bone cancer experience different symptoms, see different specialists and receive different treatments. Bone diseases most commonly affect adults and children worldwide:

Osteoporosis - Symptoms of osteoporosis include weak bones that are more likely to break, as a result of bone loss. As osteoporosis is an invisible condition, many people are not aware they have it.

Metabolic bone disease - Several metabolic diseases of the bones cause osteoporosis. There are a variety of conditions that are characterized by abnormal bone strength due to vitamin or mineral deficiencies (such as vitamin D, calcium or phosphorus). These diseases include osteomalacia (softening of the bones), hyperparathyroidism (overactive thyroid gland, which causes calcium to disappear from the bones), Paget disease (extremely weak bones), and developmental bone abnormalities in children.

Fracture - The most common cause of acute fractures is trauma, although bone cancer can also play a role. Fractures heal more quickly in children's bones because they're more flexible and resilient. Sporting or playing activities are more likely to cause wrist fractures in kids. An older person is more likely to suffer hip injuries due to balance problems and weakened bones.

Stress fracture - Runners are more likely to suffer from stress fractures, also known as overuse fractures.

Bone cancer - A diagnosis of bone cancer occurs between 1% and 2% of the time, according to the National Cancer Institute. Breast and prostate cancer metastatic tumors have a high risk of spreading to the bones. Several types of blood cancer, including multiple myeloma, lead to abnormalities in the bone marrow, causing fractures in the hips, pelvis, ribs, shoulders, and spine of patients.

Scoliosis - The spine is curved abnormally in a way that appears as an S- or C-shaped curve from the back. Most commonly found in infants or children, but can also occur in adults.

Joint disease types

The leading cause of disability in the world is arthritis. Osteoarthritis and autoimmune joint diseases are the two main types of arthritis. These conditions are characterized by contrasting symptoms and medical management. Among the most common joint disorders:

Osteoarthritis - Osteoarthritis occurs most commonly with aging, and is characterized by wear-and-tear. It is normal for joint cartilage to degrade over time, causing pain and stiffness, especially when moving. The pain and reduced flexibility of hip and knee arthritis make walking increasingly difficult. This chronic, progressive disease tends to affect older adults, especially women.

Rheumatoid arthritis - The joints are affected by this condition. Autoimmune disorders include rheumatoid arthritis. The joints accumulate large amounts of immune cells that should not be there. Upon interaction of the immune cells with local joint cells, the immune cells cause ever-increasing inflammation, ultimately causing cartilage and bone destruction.

Spondylarthritis - This umbrella term refers to various rheumatoid conditions that also fall within the spondylitis category. In ankylosing spondylitis, the spine becomes enflamed, resulting in spinal fusion. An enteropathy arthritis may be caused by inflammation of the bowel, such as ulcerative colitis. Hands and feet tend to be compromised in psoriatic arthritis, which occurs when psoriasis affects the skin.

Juvenile idiopathic arthritis - The most common chronic joint disease in children is juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, also referred to as JIA. The immune system of the child attacks healthy tissues throughout the body in this condition. Since the cause is unknown, the condition is called "idiopathic." Inflammation caused by JIA can affect the eyes, as well as muscles, joints, ligaments, and internal organs. JIA can also affect a child's growth, which is concerning.

Lupus - In addition to the skin, internal organs, blood, brain, bones, and joints, this autoimmune condition affects many other parts of the body as well. Symptoms of arthritis can occur in the hands, knees, elbows, shoulders, and feet due to inflammation caused by lupus.

Gout - A common site for the development of this kind of arthritis is the joint connecting the big toe to the rest of the foot. A waste product of the blood called uric acid coagulates in the joints in gout. A gout flare-up often occurs in the middle of the night, which is extremely painful. Although women become more susceptible to gout after menopause, men are more likely to suffer from the condition.

Bursitis - Inflammation of bursae, the small, fluid-filled sacs surrounding joints, tendons, muscles, and bones, causes bursitis. It is possible for bursitis flare-ups to be caused by overuse or injury to joints like the hip, elbow, and shoulder. Some cases of bursitis are due to bacterial infections.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

It's not just your joints that can be affected by inflammatory conditions like rheumatoid arthritis. Skin, eyes, lungs, heart, and blood vessels are some of the things that may be damaged by this condition. An autoimmune disease, rheumatoid arthritis happens when your body's immune system attacks its own tissues. The surfaces of your joints are affected by osteoarthritis, while the lining of your joints is affected by rheumatoid arthritis, causing bleeding, swelling, and deformities. Inflammation caused by rheumatoid arthritis can also damage other parts of the body. Despite the improvement in treatment options due to new types of medications, severe rheumatoid arthritis can still result in physical disabilities.


Patients with rheumatoid arthritis may experience the following signs and symptoms:
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fever
  • Warm, tender, and swollen joints
  • Fatigue
  • Joint stiffness
Early rheumatoid arthritis tends to affect smaller joints first, especially the joints connecting fingers and toes. Depending on the severity of the disease, wrist, knee, ankle, elbow, hip and shoulder symptoms may appear. Both sides of your body usually experience the same symptoms.

Rheumatoid arthritis symptoms do not always involve the joints for about 40% of people with the disease. Some of these areas may be affected:
  • Blood vessels
  • Eyes
  • Bone marrow
  • Heart
  • Lungs
  • Nerve tissues
  • Kidneys
  • Skin
Those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis may exhibit a variety of signs and symptoms that may come and go. A flare is a period of increased disease activity as the swelling and pain subside or disappear. The deformity and displacement of joints caused by rheumatoid arthritis can continue over time.


Autoimmune diseases include rheumatoid arthritis. The immune system normally protects you against illness and infection. Immune cells attack healthy joints to cause rheumatoid arthritis. In addition to causing physical problems, it can also harm your heart, lungs, nerves, eyes, and skin.Genetics are likely to be involved in this process, although the cause is not known. Genetic factors do not cause rheumatoid arthritis, but they do make you more likely to be susceptible to environmental factors - such as bacterial and viral infections - that can trigger it.


As a result of osteoporosis, a fracture can be caused by falling or even coughing. Bones become brittle and weak as a result of the disease. In osteoporosis, hip, wrist, and spine fractures are most common. The bones are living tissues that are continually broken down and replaced. The cause of osteoporosis is not enough new bone being created to replace the old bone. A person suffering from osteoporosis can be of any racial or ethnic background. However, older white and Asian women, especially those who have passed menopause, face the greatest risk. Bone loss can be prevented or strengthened with the use of medications, healthy diets, and weight-bearing exercise.


Symptoms of bone loss typically do not appear until later in the process. Osteoporosis weakens your bones, but you may also experience the following symptoms:
  • A bone can be broken much more easily than expected
  • Stooped posture
  • Fractures or collapsed vertebrae can cause back pain
  • Loss of height over time


The bones in your body continually renew themselves throughout your lifetime - new bones are constantly being formed and old bones are continuously being broken down. As you age, our bodies make new bones more rapidly than they break down old ones, which increases our bone mass. By age 30, most people have reached their peak bone mass. After the early 20s, the pace slows. During aging, bones are lost faster than they are gained. A person's risk of developing osteoporosis is partly determined by how much bone mass they had when they were young. Peak bone mass varies based on ethnicity as well. As you grow older, you have more bone "in the bank" if you have a higher peak bone mass, making osteoporosis less likely to occur.


Podo-phylaxis, also known as gout, is a common form of arthritis that effects both men and women. Ankylosing spondylitis usually appears as sudden, severe attacks of pain, redness, swelling, and tenderness, usually in the big toe. An attack of gout can occur suddenly, waking you up with burning pains in the big toe in the middle of the night. Even having a bedsheet pulled over the affected joint can seem intolerable, as it is so hot, swollen, and tender. There are ways to manage gout symptoms and prevent flare-ups, although symptoms may come and go.


It is almost always a sudden onset of gout symptoms, especially at night. Among them are:
  • Intense joint pain - However, it can occur anywhere in the body, not just the big toe. In addition to the elbow, wrist, and fingers, ankles, knees, and kneecaps are also commonly affected joints. Within the first four to twelve hours after the pain has begun, it is most likely that it will be most severe.
  • Lingering discomfort - Several days to a few weeks may pass after the most severe pain has subsided. More joints may also be affected in later attacks.
  • Inflammation and redness - Swelling, tenderness, warmth, and redness appear in the affected joint or joints.
  • Limited range of motion - Gout makes it difficult for you to move your joints normally as it progresses.


Gout attacks are caused by an accumulation of urate crystals in your joints, which result in inflammation and pain. Urinary acid crystals can form when uric acid levels in the blood are high. The body breaks down uric acid, which is naturally occurring in urine, into uric acid. Foods that contain purines include red meat and organ meat, including liver. Salmon, trout, scallops, anchovies, sardines, mussels, mussels, tuna, and strife are among the seafood rich in iodine. Beverages sweetened with fruit sugar (fructose) and alcoholic drinks, especially beer, promote high uric acid levels. As uric acid passes from your blood to your urine through your kidneys, your blood contains uric acid. It is possible, however, for your kidneys to excrete too little uric acid or for your body to create too much uric acid. Upon accumulation of uric acid in a joint or surrounding tissue, urate crystals form, which cause pain, swelling, and inflammation.
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Ankur Choudhary is India's first professional pharmaceutical blogger, author and founder of pharmaguideline.com, a widely-read pharmaceutical blog since 2008. Sign-up for the free email updates for your daily dose of pharmaceutical tips.
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