Did you know that joints are subjected to many considerable stress due to several factors? The are used frequently, and they must provide for a great variety of body movements.
Some of them must support body weight. Injuries such as dislocations and sprains occur commonly during strenuous physical activities. In addition, joints may be affected by inflammation as well as by a number of degenerative diseases such as arthritis.
A dislocation (luxation) involves the displacement of the articulating bones of a joint. This condition usually occurs as the result of a fall ( meaning if you happen to fall this disorder may result) or some other unusual body movement.
The joints of the shoulders, knees, elbows, fingers, and jaw are common sites for such an injuries. A dislocation is characterized by an obvious deformity of the joint, some loss of ability to move the parts involved, localized pain, and swelling. It presents a severe physical problem and requires medical attention.
Sprains are the result of overstretching or tearing the connective tissues, ligaments, and tendons associated with a joint, but without dislocating the articular bones. Usually sprains are caused by forceful wrenching or twisting movements involving joints of the wrists or ankles.
For example, the ankle may be sprained if it is inverted excessively when running or jumping, causing the ligaments on its lateral surface to be stretched. In severe injuries, these tissues may be pulled loose from their attachments.
A sprained joints is likely to be painful and swollen, and movement at the joint may be restricted. The immediate treatment for a sprain is rest; more serious cases require medical attention.
However, immobilization of a joint, even for a relatively shirt period, results in resorption of bone tissue and weakening of ligaments. Consequently, following such treatment, exercises may be needed to help strengthened the joint.
Bursitis is an inflammation of a bursa that may be caused by excessive use of a joint or by stress on a bursa. For example, the Bursa between the heelbone (calcaneus) and the Achilles tendon may become inflamed as a result of a sudden increase in physical activity involving the use of the feet.
Similarly, a form of bursitis called “tennis elbow” involves the bursa between the olecranon process and the skin. Generally, bursitis is treated with rest, although severe cases may need medication.
Arthritis is an infection that lead to a disease condition that causes inflamed, swollen, and painful joints. Although there are several types of arthritis, the most prevalent or common forms are rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
1. Rheumatoid arthritis
It is an autoimmune disease and is the most painful and potentially crippling of the arthritic conditions. In this type of arthritis, the synovial membrane of a joint becomes inflamed and grows thicker, forming a mass called a pannus.
This change is usually followed by damage to the articular cartilages of the joint and by an invasion of the joint by fibrous tissues. These tissues interfere increasingly with joint movements, and , in time, they may become ossified so that the articulating bones become fused together (bony avnkylosis).
The rheumatoid arthritis may affect many joints or only a few. It may be accompanied by the development of other disorders, including anemia, osteoporosis, and muscular atrophy as well as abnormal changes in the skin, eyes, lungs, blood vessels, and heart.
Although e mechanism by which joints are damaged in rheumatoid arthritis is not well understood, it seems to involve the presence of certain white blood cells (chronic inflammatory cells, such as lymphocytes and monocytes).
These cells release substances (cytokines) that stimulate osteoclastic activities, which , in turn, can cause destruction of bone tissue.
2. Osteoarthritis (degenerative joints disease)
This is the most common type of arthritis. It occurs ad a result of ageing, as well as certain other factors, and affects a large proportion of the population over fifty years of age.
In this condition, the articular cartilages soften and disintegrate gradually, so that the articular surfaces become roughened. Consequently, the joints involved ate painful, and their movement is somewhat restricted.
The osteoarthritis is most likely to affect joints that have received the greatest use over someone’s lifetime, such as those of the fingers, hips, knees, and the lower regions of the vertebral column.
Other factors that seem to increase the chances of developing osteoarthritis include joint injuries, excess body weight, and certain metabolic disorders.
As a rule, osteoarthritis develops relatively slowly, and its symptoms may be controlled by medication. In !ore severe cases, joints functions are disrupted, and parts of joints may need to be replaced surgically.
If you happened to feel severe pain and loss of knee joint function as a result of rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis. You need to receive a knee replacement.
During this surgical procedure called total knee atthroplasty, the damage surfaces of the distal femur are removed and replaced with a smooth surface metallic device.
Similarly, the proximal surface of the tibia is removed and replaced by a device consisting of low friction polyethylene attached to a metal plate. The metallic parts of these devices are connected to the bones by means of pegs, screws, or bone cement.
Obesity and athletic activities
In addition to causing fractures, the excessive mechanical stress due to obesity or certain athletic activities may damage the articular cartilage of various joints and cause it to deteriorate. Joints that are subjected to the repeated overloading, as in the elbows of a baseball pitcher or the knee of a basketball player, are likely to develop the degenerative joint diseases called osteoarthritis.
Although degeneration of the cartilage may be reversed when joints movements are resumed, it is important to avoid exercises that cause excessive compression of the tissue during the period of regeneration. Otherwise, further injuries may occur and the repair process may be hindered.
The joints disorders are not just restricted to a certain group of people age. It is a disease that is cause by an infection sometimes but yes age matter.
To correct problems caused by joint injuries or diseases, it is sometimes desirable to replace e articulating parts with artificial (prosthetic) devices.