What is the difference between osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis? What are their special precautions and natural treatments? Find out the expert answers in this article.
Both these forms of arthritis have got some similarities as well as differences. Their exact causes are not known. While osteoarthritis often accompanies aging, rheumatoid arthritis can occur in any age group and is also found in children and adults.
Osteoarthritis can be commonly found in people around the age group of 60. The intensity of pain and degree of the problem varies according to their lifestyle. Rheumatoid arthritis might develop at any age, although during remission period, there might be a complete lack of symptoms of pain.
Broadly speaking, these are the major signs of difference between osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis -
1) Pain is a common characteristic in both forms of arthritis.
It is also one of the major distinguishing factors which doctors use for diagnosis and to identify the difference them.
In osteoarthritis, the pain might occur in only one joint, for example in the right knee. On the other hand, in rheumatoid arthritis the pain is generally found occurring on the joints on both sides of the body. For example, there might be pain in both knees.
2) “Wear and tear” of the cartilage cushions is the primary reason for osteoarthritis. The cartilage cushions act as shock absorbers that prevent the bones of the joint from rubbing together. When this cartilage is damaged due to overuse or injury, it causes osteoarthritis and leads to inflammation and swelling in the joints.
In rheumatoid arthritis, the pain and inflammation in the joints take place well before any damage occurs in the cartilage cushions. In fact, frequent occurrence of chronic inflammation causes damage to the cartilage and intense pain.
3) Factors that might lead to the occurrence of osteoarthritis are – obesity, joint injury, overuse of joints and heredity. On the other hand, obesity might aggravate the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, but it does not play any role in developing of that condition in the first place.
4) One of the major difference between osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis is that osteoarthritis affects only the joints, while rheumatoid arthritis can also affect many other parts in the body.
5) What is the difference between osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis in terms of treatment? In rheumatoid arthritis, drugs that suppress immune system activity are often prescribed; whereas they are not required in osteoarthritis. However, anti-inflammatory drugs are common mode of treatment in both forms of arthritis.
Omega-3 fatty acid supplementation in the diet by using fish oil supplements is one of the best, most effective and natural ways of treating the symptoms of both forms of arthritis.
They are also free of the potential side effects that most of the description based anti-inflammatory drugs suffer from. On the contrary, they provide a lot of health benefits such as improvement in brain health, cardiovascular health, digestive system, memory and concentration, skin health, joints and much more.
Green lipped mussel found in New Zealand is also another excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids. It plays an effective role in reducing pain and joint stiffness, increasing grip strength and enhancing mobility in people suffering from osteoarthritis. It has excellent anti-inflammatory properties and is used in combination with fish oil supplements to provide effective long-term relief in arthritis symptoms.
However, if you are using blood thinner medications such as aspirin on medical prescription, then you should consult your doctor before including omega-3 supplements or fish oil supplements for arthritis relief as they are natural blood thinners. This is to ensure that you do not take too many blood thinners as it could lead to potential side effects.
Vijay K Raisinghani is a Natural Healthcare Expert and a passionate advocate of Omega 3 Fish oils for a healthy mind and body. His website http://www.your-omega3-fish-oil-guide.com provides a wealth of information on what works and what doesn’t work in Omega 3 fish oils to achieve a young, vibrant and robust health.
Q&A: How do I tell the difference between my parkinsons and spinal stenosis? Some symptoms are the same.?
Question by : How do I tell the difference between my parkinsons and spinal stenosis? Some symptoms are the same.?
Some symptoms of parkinson’s and spinal steno sis are the same and I suppose can overlap. What I need to know is how do I tell the difference. I am scheduled for DBS, deep brain stimulation, surgery in a few weeks and would like to know so I know more of what to expect. I also have osteoarthritis and cervical arthritis. I get extreme weakness in my legs, sometimes to where I am unable to stand. Can you help me?
Answer by Mags
How has your spinal stenosis been diagnosed? Cervical? Lumbar? Becaue you are right, there is a commonality of symptoms.
Because Parkinson’s disease is a collection of syndromes, not all patients manifest the same symptoms nor the same disease progression as more symptoms may appear or the current symptoms worsen rapidly.
You say that you have weakness in your legs. Parkinson’s usually begins unilaterally for some time before the loss of additional dopamine causes it to become bilateral. Have you always had weakness in both legs or is that progression?
In a woman especially, neck and shoulder pain can be common to both conditions.
Bladder control is not usually an early symptom of PD but it can be just as it can progress in spinal stenosis.
I would assume that you are seeing a neurologist specializing in motion disorders who has observed you, taken your symptom history, had various tests performed to rule out other conditions.
Although the two conditions are not related, spinal stenosis is related to osteoarthritis and cervical arthritis which you do have.
Although both condidtions are more commonly seen in people over 50 years of age, Parkinson’s disease can begin much earlier and often does.
Both conditions are associated with pain. In PD the pain is often around joints and the shoulder/neck area – In spinal stenosis the pain may be in the lower back and radiate to thighs, Pain relievers rarely help.
Here’s the important thing about a differential diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease vs Spinal Stenosis, an X-ray and MRI can be used to diagnose Spinal Stenosis but not PD. CAT scans and Myelograms can also be used to detect elements of Spinal Stenosis but are not used in PD because there are no current lab tests in use for Parkinson’s.
The list of motion and non-movement symptoms is much longer for Parkinson’s disease but again some patients do not demonstrate all of them nor do the manifest all of the four primary PD Symptoms: TRAP
Rigidity or stiffening
Akinesia or bradykinesia – slowness of mvement and thought process
The list includes but is not limited to urinary and sleep issues, depression, anxiety and apathy, personality and mood changes, constipation, ED, vision problem, cognitive issues, loss of arm swing, leg drag, loss of sense of smell, dentition problems, swallowing issues, speech changes, handwriting changes, pain.
The DBS has been scheduled to help with motor issues and I suspect with pain. You may find that the proper adjustments which usually begin about 2 weeks after surgery may take some time. You will, as you know be working with a psecialist. I suggest putting problems into writing before each appointment.
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Demodexcanis is most commonly seen in young dogs. It is believed to have an hereditary basis and sire, dam and puppies should not be used for breeding after diagnosis is made. In my hands, treatment, although, expensive is usually successful and very few dogs are euthanased compared with 30 years ago. Young dogs can relapse later on in life especially if immunosuppressive drugs are used.
In older dogs, treatment is usually less successful and the dog may need to stay on maintenance therapy. Finding the underlying cause is always helpful as this makes the prognosis much more hopeful if treatment can be given. Underlying causes include: neoplasia, hypothyroidism, hyperadrenocorticism, serious systemic disease and allergy
Made by clinical impression and the presence of large numbers of mites on skin scraping or hair plucks.
The mites are usually found in the hair follicles so skin scraping should be deep and capillary ooze should be noted and some of this sample placed on your slide. Sometimes scrapings are negative but you are very suspicious of the mite. This can especially happen in feet and in certain thick skinned dogs such as mastiffs and Sharpeis. (I usually biopsy most of my sharpeis with skin disease as it helps me very quickly differentiate the different types of skin disease this dog commonly gets). Don’t feel bad if you miss it on a skin scraping.
As previously mentioned, dogs with localised demodicosis do not usually need treatment. I recommend waiting to see if they progress before starting treatment.
In generalised treatment, it is very important to get the client’s co-operation from the start. This is a frustrating and expensive disease to treat but success levels have risen dramatically since I qualified. Most dogs will have a secondary infection and will need at least one month’s antibiotics at the appropriate dose. Good nutrition with a high quality fixed formulation diet high in essential fatty acids and treatment of fleas and worms are also important.
Amitraz has been the only licensed drug for many years. I am not a huge fan of this drug because of its potential to contaminate the environment and also because it can leave the patient quite unwell too. Amitraz is a formamidine and acts by inhibition of monoamine oxidase. It is also a prostaglandin synthesis inhibitor and alpha adrenergic agonist. If a dog has a deep pyoderma, I recommend 7-10 days of antibiotics to begin healing the skin before applying the amitraz usually at 500ppm, although 250ppm may be used in small dogs. If the dog has long hair it is sensible to clip the dog before instigating therapy. A benzoyl peroxide shampoo(Paxcutol, Virbac) should be used first to get rid of all the crusts and flush the follicles where the mites reside.
Commonly treatment will need to be performed weekly for at least 8-12 weeks to effect a cure. Monthly skin scrapes should be performed to count mite numbers as well as egg and larvae numbers. If no eggs are seen it suggests that the mites have stopped breeding. After I have seen no mites on scrape I continue for 4 weeks and then stop. I tell the owners to watch the dog very closely for the next year. If they do not relapse in the first 12 months they will probably have no further problems unless treated with immunosuppressive drugs such as steroids.
Promeris is a product made by Fort Dodge which contains amitraz in a spot on form to counteract ticks. Thay also have a recommendation for use in demodex. This product seems to reduce numbers rather than eradicate them.
These drugs are produced as a by fermentation of various actinomycetes. This class of drugs includes ivermectin and selamectin. They work by potentiating the release and effects of GABA. GABA is a peripheral neurotransmitter in susceptible nematodes, arachnids and insects. They are also agonists of glutamate gated chloride channels. In mammals, GABA is limited to the CNS. These drugs do not cross the blood/brain barrier and are, therefore, safe at usual doseage levels. However, high doses of ivermectin can be toxic in dogs under 3 months or certain breeds particularly collies and collie crosses.
PLEASE DO NOT USE THESE DRUGS IN THESE BREEDS FATALITIES HAVE OCCURRED
However, in most dogs it is wonderfully tolerated and I have found it to be a wonderful drug in the treatment of juvenile onset demodicosis. I usually see referral cases were other treatments have failed and I feel ok to reach for the ivermectin. You need to be careful of the cascade before doing this and obviously request informed consent. Iddex can perform a test called the Ivermectin hypersensitivity test which looks for the MDR1 mutation. This is a useful test to do before starting the dog on ivermectin. The usual dose is 600 micrograms/kg or 1ml per 17 kg. This is given orally each day until no mites are seen and one further month has passed.
Milbemycin can be used at a dose rate of 1-2 mg/kg sid. It is better tolerated by ivermectin sensitive breeds. However, it is very expensive when used in this way. We do not have milbemycin on its own in the UK so it would need to be imported under licence from the VMD. Some dermatologists use cat milbemax tablets at 1-2mg/kg of the milbemycin and ignore the praziquantal dose. This is given orally and daily
Bayer’s product Advocate contains the milbemycinmoxidectin. It has a claim for demodicosis and was presented in Hong Kong at The World Veterinary Dermatology Congress in November 2008 by Ralph Mueller from Germany.
In the study, the advocate was applied every 2 weeks. 72 dogs were included in the study: 52 with juvenile onset, 20 with adult onset disease. 23 juvenile onset dogs went into remission 3 with adult onset. Mean time until remission was 12.5 weeks. He also showed that dogs with mild signs showed a better success rate than those with severe disease.
This products seems to be better at controlling rather than eradicating the mites. Dogs will often look better but are not microscopically cured.
In cases that do not cure, then maintenance treatment will probably be required.
Please check dosage and always get informed consent for un-licensed drugs.
Treating dogs with demodicosis can be frustrating and will often take several months. It is important to stick with treatment and measure success by using repeated skin scrapes. I hope this review of treatment in 2011 will be useful for the practising vet.
Anthony Chadwick runs a referral dermatology practice in the North of England. His aim is to provide fantastic value in veterinary CPD in the comfort of your own homes without the hassle of travel and very late nights through his website the webinar vet.
Arthritis Foundation Utah/Idaho Chapter
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Question by momof2: What is the difference between Infectious Arthritis and Ankylosing Spondylitis in symptoms?
I have arthritis that has fused my SI joints, and had to also get both my hips replaced due to degeneration of the joint. I thought I had AS. But the tests did not come Positive, but that also is common with people with AS. How can I tell if I have AS or if it could be an Infectious Arthritis? I have had my condition since I was 15yrs
Answer by everythingspeachy2000
infectious arthritis… ABOVE link….
for the other…you can read about the symptoms there…
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Question by Buff Me: What is the difference between Arthritis and Osteoarthritis ???
i am referring to arthritis in my knees
Answer by gillianprowe
Their are over 100 different types of Arthritis: Rheumatoid Arthritis, Psoriatic Arthritis, Lupus the list goes on. Then we have Osteoarthritis. The best way to define them, the first group is autoimmune in nature, where the body’s own immune system attacks cells within the body, so could be joints, heart, lung, kidneys, not just joints. Osteoarthritis means ‘wear and tear’ of the joints. So after the age of 30 ‘everyone’ will have some form, mild, medium, chronic wear and tear of their joints. However, with Arthritis it is always ‘best practice’ to see a Doctor and get the ‘correct’ diagnosis! I have read medical reports of females being found dead at home, heart attack, only to then find out for many years they had Lupus and it was undiagnosed. The earlier you are diagnosed, the earlier they can treat and prevent other problems. Just because you have ‘pain’ in the knee does not mean you have Arthritis! It could be caused by a infection, cancer, many other things besides arthritis, so see a Doc and get it diagnosed. Best of Luck
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Question by Fred E: what is the difference between osteoarthritis rheumatoid arthritis ?
Answer by parckmagic
rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease whereas osteoarthritis is due to progressive degeneration of the joint. rheumatoid arthritis is the one that can disfigure your hands, osteoarthritis usually does not.
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Question by huny_ina_hardhat: How can you tell the difference between joint pain and muscle pain?
Is it joint pain or muscle pain that stops almost immediately when you quit moving or change positions to rest or get relief for the suddenly very sore area?
Answer by Douglas B
Very seldom, if ever, are you going to feel joint pain. There are no pain receptors in the joints or ways of sending messages. You are really feeling the pain in the muscles around that joint, ones that have become inflamed or are having pressure put on them. So the real answer is it’s all muscle pain.
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Question by Anthony C: How to tell the difference between joint pain in knees and muscle pain?
I do heavy squats about 3 days a week and sometimes I can’t tell if the joint is in pain or the muscles surrounding them are. Does anyone know anything I can do to help me figure it out?
Answer by jeffach
muscle pain from squats is usually in the thighs and butt
there arent really knee muscles, sounds like ur joints
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What is the difference between rheumatoid arthritis and severe degenerative osteoarthritis and treatments?
Question by davitkos: What is the difference between rheumatoid arthritis and severe degenerative osteoarthritis and treatments?
I had a car run over me two years ago and since then I have gotten severe osteoarthritis in both of my knees, feet, hips, lower back and hands. I have no synovial fluid left in my knees and rubbing bone on bone. When I get up in the morning, I have to shuffle because my feet will not function. I think that is all I can explain at this time. Thanks
Answer by dmh
rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an immunolgical condition, where the body attacks itself. osteoarthritis (OA) is from age, injuries, overuse, or accidents like yours.
OA is treated with pain meds, injections into the joint and similar things, with really degenerated joints eventually being replaced.
RA is treated by first trying to get it into remission so the body stops attacking itself, and then dealing with the damage from the disease.
Hope that helps.
If you are this severe, get a specialist if you dont have one – a rheumatologist is who you need. They are on top of the latest treatments, and there are many, so that hopefully you dont have to suffer too much. A family doctor is just not equipped to treat this best.
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Question by Sallal: What’s the difference between “inflammatory arthritis” and “inflammatory osteoarthritis”?
Are they the same thing?
Answer by drunkpoet2003
no, my mom had osteoathritis, it is swelling of atreries on the tempels
arthritis is a bone thing i think
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