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INFECTIOUS ARTHRITIS
Infectious Arthritis or Septic Arthritis is characterized as an inflammation in a joint resulting from infection. This is one of the few forms of arthritis which is curable. Infectious Arthritis usually affects larger joints, such as the hip and knee.

CAUSES
Infection elsewhere in the body that spreads to nearby joints.
Skin boils next to joints. Injury to a joint, including puncture wounds and skin abrasions.

SYMPTOMS
Chills and fever
Redness, welling, tenderness and pain in affected joint.
Pain in joint that worsens with movement.
Throbbing pain in or near joints.
Pain in buttocks, thighs or groin.

TREATMENT

TRADITIONAL
Recovery from Infectious Arthritis can take months. The usual course of treatment begins with antibiotics, which work to cure the initial infection. Narcotic pain relievers are also prescribed to alleviate joint pain.


JUVENILE RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS
Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis is an inflammatory disease of connective tissue. Mostly affecting children, this form of arthritis is commonly found in joints and is often confused with Lyme Disease. This type of arthritis is usually found in knees, elbows, ankles and the neck.

CAUSES
Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis is thought to be caused by an autoimmune disorder, in which the body's immune system attacks its own tissue. Earliest symptoms are generally brought about with physical or emotional stress.

SYMPTOMS
Pain, swelling and stiffness in toes, knees, ankles and elbows.
Temperature of 103-degrees in the evening hours. Fever is often accompanied by body rash and chills.
Poor appetite.
Weight loss.
Anemia.
Irritability.
Swollen lymph glands and nodes.
Eye pain or redness.
Chest pain.

TREATMENT

TRADITIONAL
Physical therapy is often the first course of treatment with this form of arthritis. Non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce pain and inflammation are often prescribed, and special attention to the diet is taken.

ALTERNATIVE
Before using any alternatives discuss it with your doctor.
Work with a nutritionist is helpful. A change in eating habits and lifestyle most often boosts the immune system naturally, and provides much relief.

Soaks in hot water and menthol can work to relieve pressure and pain on joints.

Adding cone shaped bed supports or similar items to your child's mattress helps to relieve pain.


RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS
Rheumatoid arthritis is a long term illness that involves muscles and membrane linings of the joints and cartilage. This form of arthritis most often affects synovial membranes, muscles and ligaments, blood vessels, eyes and cartilage. Women are 3 times more likely to suffer Rheumatoid Arthritis than men. It most often begins between ages 20-60, with a peak incidence between ages 35-45.

CAUSES
It is still unknown as to why Rheumatoid Arthritis occurs. However, it is thought to be caused by autoimmune disorders.

TREATMENT

TRADITIONAL
Doctors may prescribe non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, including aspirin. Gold compounds and immunosuppressive drugs are also a part of routine treatment. Cortisone drugs may help to relieve pain for short periods.

ALTERNATIVE
Exercise is used as an effective treatment for Rheumatoid Arthritis. Staying active on a daily basis will preserve strength and joint mobility. Even exercising disabled joints passively helps to prevent contractures.

Aspirin and acetaminophen are used for joint inflammation and minor pain.

Heating rubs (such as menthol) and heating pads aid in reducing pain and inflammation. Cayenne Cream can also help to diminish pain.

Glucosamine, three times daily, helps to reduce pain and inflammation.

Niacinamide and Chondroitin works nicely to reduce inflammation and pain, though it is more costly.


OSTEOARTHRITIS
Osteoarthritis or Degenerative Joint Disease is a degeneration of cartilage at a joint. Bone spurs often form and inflame surrounds tissues. All joints are subject to Osteoarthritis, but it is most common in fingers, feet, knees, hips and spine.

CAUSES
The exact cause of Osteoarthritis is unknown. Recent research has suggested that a combination of mechanical, biological, biochemical and immunological factors are to blame.

SYMPTOMS
Joint stiffness and pain.
Limited movement and loss of dexterity in joints.
Swelling of joints, especially fingers.
Cracking or grating sounds with joint movement.

TREATMENT

TRADITIONAL
An immobilizing collar (such as the Thomas collar) is used to treat pain in neck and back areas.

Non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are also used for pain and inflammation, as are Cortisone injections.

ALTERNATIVE
Applying heat to painful and stiff joints for 20 minutes 2-3 times daily will help to reduce level of pain. Use hot towels, hot tubs, infrared heat lamps, electric heating pads or deep heating ointments and lotions.

Swimming in a heated pool helps to keep joints limber and also reduce inflammation.

Massage the muscles around painful joints to increase blood supply and reduce pain.

Sleep on your back on a firm mattress if osteoarthritis affects the spine. Placing a 3/4inch piece of plywood between the box spring and mattress will also help to relieve future back pain.

Avoid chilling, which frequently causes pain. Keep joints warm and active in cool weather.