Joint pain: the different possible causes

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Joint pain: the different possible causes

Joint pain: what are we talking about?

What is a joint? There are about 400 joints in the human body. A joint (such as that of the knee, hip, wrist ...) corresponds to the junction between two bones: it allows both to connect them, but also to give them a mobility with respect to the other. Without joints, no movement possible!

According to the Ifop survey "The French and rheumatism" conducted for the Inserm and "Together against Rheumatism" in October 2016, 93% of French have already suffered joint pain. In France, 1 in 2 adults have joint pain, and this pain affects 1 in 3 young people!

To know : in Greek, the word "arthron" refers to the joints. This is the reason why most diseases of the joints (arthritis, osteoarthritis, arthritis ...) contain the syllable "arthr-"!

Joint pain: osteoarthritis and arthritis

  • Osteoarthritis (or osteoarthritis)

10 million French people suffer from osteoarthritis: 65% of the over 65s are affected by this joint disease (also called osteoarthritis) which is characterized by a progressive destruction of the cartilage.

Symptoms :

  • Joint pain that worsens with physical exertion and calms at rest
  • Stiffness of the joints - especially when you wake up
  • Deformity of the joints (fingers and knees, in particular),
  • Swelling, redness, crackling ... at the joints.

Osteoarthritis of the spine is most common in the 65-75 age group; finger osteoarthritis is the second most frequent location (60% of cases) and results in irreversible deformities; knee and hip arthrosis affect 30% and 10% of people aged 65 to 75 years, respectively.

Arthritis is defined as an inflammatory disease of the joints. There are several forms of arthritis: it can have an infectious cause (it is called septic arthritis), autoimmune (for example: rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus or spondyloarthritis) or metabolic (for example: gout).

The symptoms common to all forms of arthritis:

  • Painful joints at rest; the pain is slightly attenuated by physical activity,
  • Stiffness of the joints in the morning,
  • Red joints, swollen and hot,
  • Painful joints at the end of the night (sometimes even causing awakenings at night).

The joints most affected by arthritis are those of the hands and feet.

Joint pain: other possible causes

  • The generalized scleroderma is a rare disease that affects between 1 in 1300 and 1 in 5000 people depending on the country. It is characterized by a hardening of the skin that can also reach the internal organs and joints. Scleroderma mainly affects women (4 women to 1 man) between 40 and 50 years.
  • The Sjögren's syndrome is a chronic disease that appears when the immune system attacks and destroys the secretory glands of the body. It is characterized by muscle and joint pains, extreme dryness and ocular dryness, a dry cough, tiredness ... 90% of the patients are women.
  • The Lyme disease can also cause arthritis-type joint pain. Transmitted by the tick, this pathology also leads to fatigue, an influenza symptom, migraines, tremors ...
  • Joint pain can be observed in case of fibromyalgia, especially in the morning when waking up, with a certain stiffness. These joint pains are aggravated by the efforts, the cold, the humidity, the emotions, the maintenance of an activity and the lack of sleep; they are slightly calmed by heat and rest.

source: World Health Organization (WHO)

thanks to Philippe Fleuriau, chiropractor and president of the French Chiropractic Association.

Read also :

⋙ Osteoarthritis: 10 naturopathic solutions to relieve themselves

⋙ Joints: if we tried the nutritherapy?

⋙ Hyperlaxity: 7 things to know about this extreme flexibility of the joints

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