Arthritis and arthralgia are each related to joints, however they don’t seem to be identical. Listed below are some key variations between arthritis and arthralgia.

When there may be ache within the joints, two phrases pop up in our thoughts – arthritis and arthralgia. The 2 situations could also be related to joint ache, however there are variations between the 2. Whereas arthritis entails joint irritation, resulting in ache, arthralgia presents joint ache with out irritation. Proper from signs to causes, learn on to know concerning the variations between arthritis and arthralgia.

What’s arthritis?

Arthritis is a broad time period that refers to irritation of a number of joints, inflicting ache, swelling, stiffness, and lowered vary of movement. There are greater than 100 forms of arthritis, with the most typical being osteoarthritis, based on a analysis revealed within the StatPearls in 2023. Osteoarthritis entails the breakdown of cartilage within the joints, says orthopaedician Dr Yugal Karkhur.

Arthritis referring to irritation of a number of joints. Picture courtesy: Freepik

What’s arthralgia?

Arthralgia is a time period used to explain joint ache with out irritation, and if it ache in a number of joints then it’s known as polyarthralgia. It may possibly happen as a consequence of numerous causes comparable to harm, overuse, or underlying medical situations, however not like arthritis, there is no such thing as a swelling or redness current within the affected joint.

What are the variations between arthritis and arthralgia?

It’s true that the connection between arthritis and arthralgia lies of their manifestation of joint ache. Nevertheless, arthralgia can typically precede arthritis, says the professional. Listed below are some variations:

1. Signs

Arthritis: The signs of arthritis embody joint ache, swelling, stiffness, lowered vary of movement, heat, and redness.
Arthralgia: Indicators of arthralgia are joint ache with out swelling, redness, or heat.

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2. Causes

Arthritis: It may be attributable to numerous elements together with harm, an infection, autoimmune issues, or put on and tear of joints.
Arthralgia: It’s typically attributable to harm, overuse, pressure, or underlying medical situations like fibromyalgia or lupus. It may also be a aspect impact of most cancers remedies, together with Chemotherapy.

3. Analysis

Arthritis: It’s identified via bodily examination, medical historical past, imaging checks (X-rays, MRI), and blood checks (e.g. rheumatoid issue for rheumatoid arthritis).
Arthralgia: Its analysis entails evaluating the affected person’s medical historical past, conducting a bodily examination, and ruling out different potential causes of joint ache.

4. Threat elements

Arthritis: Threat elements embody age, genetics, weight problems, earlier joint accidents, and sure occupations involving repetitive joint actions.
Arthralgia: Threat elements embody joint overuse, earlier joint accidents, age, and underlying medical situations.

A woman having joint pain due to arthritis
Arthralgia could result in lowered mobility. Picture courtesy: Freepik

5. Problems

Arthritis: It may possibly result in joint harm, deformity, incapacity, and lowered high quality of life.
Arthralgia: Whether it is left untreated, it might result in persistent joint ache and lowered mobility.

6. Remedy

Arthritis: Remedy entails drugs (ache relievers, anti-inflammatories), bodily remedy, life-style modifications (train, weight administration), assistive gadgets, and in extreme circumstances, surgical procedure (joint substitute).
Arthralgia: Remedy consists of relaxation, ice or warmth remedy, over-the-counter ache relievers, mild workouts, sustaining a wholesome weight, and avoiding actions that worsen joint ache.

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Can an individual have arthritis and arthralgia on the identical time?

Sure, an individual can expertise each arthritis and arthralgia concurrently, says Dr Karkhur. Arthralgia could precede the event of arthritis or happen concurrently with it. In some circumstances, joint ache with out irritation could also be an early symptom of arthritis, particularly in situations like rheumatoid arthritis the place joint irritation develops over time.

You need to attain out to a health care provider when you really feel intense ache in joints after an harm. Sudden joint swelling otherwise you lack of ability to maneuver your joint additionally means you should name your physician. Correct analysis and administration by medical doctors are important to handle each the situations successfully and enhance the standard of life.