What is Psoriatic Arthritis?
Psoriatic arthritis is a type of arthritis associated with psoriasis, which is a chronic skin and nail disease. Psoriasis causes red, scaly rashes as well as thick, pitted fingernails. Psoriatic arthritis shares similarities with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in terms of symptoms and joint swelling (inflammation). However, it tends to impact fewer joints than RA. And it does not produce the typical RA antibodies.
Here are the 5 forms that make up psoriatic arthritis:
- Arthritis that affects small finger and/or toe joints
- Asymmetrical arthritis of the joints which affect hands and feet
- Symmetrical polyarthritis, which shares similarities with RA
- Arthritis mutilans, which is a rare type of arthritis known for destroying and deforming joints
- Psoriatic spondylitis, which affects the lower back (sacroiliac sac) and the spine
What causes psoriatic arthritis?
Doctors don’t really know what causes psoriatic arthritis apart from the genes you inherit from your parents and grandparents. If you were born with genes that put you at risk of this condition, watch out for the following triggers:
- an accident or injury
- an infection
- being overweight
The element of chance can also be considered. It might not be possible to determine for certain the cause of the psoriatic arthritis.
Psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis are not contagious conditions. This means no one can catch it from another.
What are the symptoms of psoriatic arthritis?
The symptoms may begin before or after the psoriatic arthritis. Psoriasis leads to red, scaly rashes and thick, pitted fingernails. Up to 3 in 20 to 3 in 10 people living with psoriasis may develop psoriatic arthritis.
Here are some of the symptoms of psoriatic arthritis:
- Inflamed, swollen, and painful joints, usually in the fingers and toes
- Deformed joints caused by chronic inflammation
The symptoms of psoriatic arthritis can be similar to those of other health conditions. Ensure that you see your healthcare provider for a diagnosis to be sure.
How is psoriatic arthritis treated?
Treatment usually depends on your symptoms, age, general health and the severity of your condition.
Treatment is administered for the skin condition and the joint inflammation. Early diagnosis and treatment help prevent joint damage. Some of the medicines used for treating psoriatic arthritis include the following:
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicines (NSAIDs) for easing symptoms
- Corticosteroids for inflammation
- Immunosuppressive medicines, for example, methotrexate for reducing inflammation if NSAIDs fails to work
- Biologic medicines for easing inflammation
- Vitamins and minerals, for example, calcium and vitamin D for slowing bone deformation
Other relevant treatments may include:
- Heat and cold
- Occupational therapy for helping you carry out your daily activities
- Physical therapy for helping your muscle and joint function
- Management of psoriasis skin rash
- Surgery for repairing or replacing a damaged joint. This is often not required until years after diagnosis.
- Ultraviolet light treatment (UVB or PUVA)
If you are living with psoriatic arthritis or another form of arthritis or have someone close who has it, be informed that we offer 100% natural medication for the treatment of arthritis. All you need to do is, contact us for consultation and then delivery of the treatment.