Arthritis is inflammation of one or more of your joints. The main symptoms of arthritis are joint pain and stiffness, which typically worsen with age. The most common types of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Osteoarthritis causes cartilage — the hard, slippery tissue that covers the ends of bones where they form a joint — to break down. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder that first targets the lining of joints (synovium).
Uric acid crystals, infections or underlying disease, such as psoriasis or lupus, can cause other types of arthritis.
Treatments vary depending on the type of arthritis. The main goals of arthritis treatments are to reduce symptoms and improve quality of life.
Jul. 15, 2014
- Questions and answers about arthritis and rheumatic diseases. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Diseases. http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Arthritis/arthritis_rheumatic_qa.asp. Accessed May 16, 2014.
- Venables PJW, et al. Clinical features of rheumatoid arthritis. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed May 18, 2014.
- Mobasheri A. The future of osteoarthritis therapeutics: Targeted pharmacological therapy. Current Rheumatology Reports. 2013;15:364.
- Loeser RF. Aging processes and the development of osteoarthritis. Current Opinion in Rheumatology. 2013;25:108.
- Osteoarthritis. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Diseases. http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Osteoarthritis/default.asp. Accessed May 16, 2014.
- Kalunian KC. Initial pharmacologic therapy of osteoarthritis. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed May 18, 2014.
- Osteoarthritis. American College of Rheumatology. http://www.rheumatology.org/Practice/Clinical/Patients/Diseases_And_Conditions/Osteoarthritis/, Accessed May 16, 2014.
You Are ... The Campaign for Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic is a not-for-profit organization. Make a difference today.