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What're the treatments for juvenile rheumatoid arthritis?

The treatment of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis centers around decreasing joint inflammation, suppressing pain, and preserving movement in order to prevent joint deformity. This is commonly done with a combination of medications, physical therapy and exercise. A pediatrician, family physician, or other primary care doctor frequently manages the treatment of a child with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, often with the help of other doctors. Treatment is determined by the type and severity

of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. Even when juvenile rheumatoid arthritis is uncomplicated, an affected child still needs many years of medical treatment. To make sure the child's care is appropriate for the stage of disease, work closely with the medical team. The main goals of treatment are to preserve a high level of physical and social functioning and maintain a good quality of life. To achieve these goals, doctors recommend treatments to reduce swelling; maintain full movement in the affected joints; relieve pain; and identify, treat, and prevent complications. Most children with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis need medication and physical therapy to reach these goals.

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are usually the first medications tried to relieve joint inflammation. They work by decreasing the amount of an enzyme found in affected joints that promotes inflammation. This same enzyme, however, has a protective effect in the stomach, so NSAIDs often cause stomach irritation and ulcers. Low doses of NSAIDs are available over-the-counter, including ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin and other brand names) and naproxen (Naprosyn, Aleve and others). Newer prescription drugs, the COX-2 inhibitors, including celecoxib (Celebrex)and valdecoxib (Bextra) are thought to be safer for the stomach because they do not have as much of an effect on the enzyme that protects the stomach.

Disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs). Doctors use these medications when NSAIDs alone fail to relieve symptoms of joint pain and swelling. They may be taken in combination with NSAIDs and are used to slow the progress of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. The most commonly used DMARD for children is methotrexate (Rheumatrex). Other DMARDs include sulfasalazine (Azulfidine) and etanercept (Enbrel). If NSAIDs do not relieve symptoms of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, the doctor is likely to prescribe this type of medication. DMARDs slow the progression of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, but because they take weeks or months to relieve symptoms, they often are taken along with an NSAID.

Corticosteroids. Corticosteroids are for children with more severe juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. They're used to control symptoms until a DMARD takes effect or to prevent complications such as inflammation of the sac around the heart (pericarditis). In children with very severe juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, stronger medicines may be needed to stop serious symptoms. Corticosteroids like prednisone may be added to the treatment plan to control severe symptoms. Corticosteroids can interfere with a child's normal growth and can cause other side effects, such as a round face, weakened bones, and increased susceptibility to infections. Once the medication controls severe symptoms, the doctor may reduce the dose gradually and eventually stop it completely. Because it can be dangerous to stop taking corticosteroids suddenly, it is important that the patient carefully follow the doctor's instructions about how to take or reduce the dose. Corticosteroids, such as prednisone (Deltasone), may be administered by mouth or by injection. But they can interfere with normal growth and increase susceptibility to infection. Stopping long-term use of corticosteroids suddenly also can be dangerous, so it's important to follow a doctor's instructions on usage.

Physical therapy. Children with juvenile arthritis should be encouraged to maintain as normal a life as possible. Exercise is an important part of a child's treatment plan. It can help to maintain muscle tone and preserve and recover the range of motion of the joints. A physiatrist (rehabilitation specialist) or a physical therapist can design an appropriate exercise program for a person with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. The specialist also may recommend using splints and other devices to help maintain normal bone and joint growth. In severe cases, physical therapy may be recommended to keep the joints moving as freely as possible. Tutoring or special attention from teachers may be needed if the child misses many weeks of school due to illness.

Complementary and alternative medicine. Many adults seek alternative ways of treating arthritis, such as special diets or supplements. Although these methods may not be harmful in and of themselves, no research to date shows that they help. Alternative treatments that have been suggested for arthritis include juice therapy, which can work to detoxify the body, helping to reduce juvenile rheumatoid arthritis symptoms. Some recommended fruits and vegetables to include in the juice are carrots, celery, cabbage, potatoes, cherries, lemons, beets, cucumbers, radishes, and garlic. Tomatoes and other vegetables in the nightshade (potatoes, eggplant, red and green peppers) are discouraged. As an adjunct therapy, aromatherapy preparations utilize cypress, fennel, and lemon. Massage oils include rosemary, benzoin, chamomile, camphor, juniper, and lavender. Other types of therapy which have been used include acupuncture, acupressure, and body work. Nutritional supplements that may be beneficial include large amounts of antioxidants (vitamins C, A, E, zinc, selenium, and flavenoids), as well as B vitamins and a full complement of minerals (including boron, copper, manganese). Other nutrients that assist in detoxifying the body, including methionine, cysteine, and other amino acids, may also be helpful. A number of autoimmune disorders, including juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, seem to have a relationship to food allergies. Identification and elimination of reactive foods may result in a decrease in juvenile rheumatoid arthritis symptoms. Constitutional homeopathy can also work to quiet the symptoms of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis and bring about balance to the whole person.

More information on rheumatoid arthritis and other arthritis conditions (osteoarthritis, septic arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, Reiter's syndrome, ankylosing spondylitis, gout)

What is rheumatoid arthritis? - Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disorder that marked by stiffness and inflammation of the joints, weakness, loss of mobility, and deformity.
What causes rheumatoid arthritis? - The cause of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is unknown. Rheumatoid arthritis involves an attack on the body by its own immune cells (auto-immune disease).
What're the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis? - The symptoms that distinguish rheumatoid arthritis are inflammation and soft-tissue swelling of many joints at the same time (polyarthritis).
How is rheumatoid arthritis diagnosed? - Health professionals diagnose rheumatoid arthritis by examining joints and evaluating ymptoms, medical history, and results of several tests.
What's the treatment for rheumatoid arthritis? - The treatment of rheumatoid arthritis includes the use of non-drug treatment such as rest and physiotherapy, drugs may be required both to control symptoms of the disease.
What rheumatoid arthritis medications are available? - Rheumatoid arthritis medications include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, injectable gold salts, plaquenil or hydroxychloroquine.
What rheumatoid arthritis diet is suggested? - Certain vitamin supplements may be beneficial. Many herbs also are useful in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.
What is juvenile rheumatoid arthritis? - Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis (JRA) is a form of arthritis in children ages 16 or younger that causes inflammation and stiffness of joints for more than six weeks.
What causes juvenile rheumatoid arthritis? - Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder. Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis is considered to be a multifactorial condition.
What're the symptoms of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis? - Symptoms of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis may appear during episodes (flare-ups) or may be chronic and continuous.
How is juvenile rheumatoid arthritis diagnosed? - Diagnosis of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis is often made on the basis of the child's collection of symptoms.
What're the treatments for juvenile rheumatoid arthritis? - The treatment of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis centers on decreasing joint inflammation, suppressing pain, and preserving movement.
What is osteoarthritis? - Osteoarthritis (OA), also known as arthrosis or degenerative joint disease, is a disease featuring pain and impaired function of the joints.
What causes osteoarthritis? - Primary osteoarthritis is mostly related to aging. Osteoarthritis results from a combination of genetic predisposition and joint injuries.
What're the risk factors for osteoarthritis? - Risk factors for osteoarthritis are congenital hip luxation, obesity, osteoporosis, and inflammatory diseases.
What're the complications of osteoarthritis? - The major complication of osteoarthritis is pain. The degree of pain can vary greatly. Osteoarthritis itself is not life threatening.
What are symptoms of osteoarthritis? - The main symptoms of osteoarthritis are is pain that worsens during activity and that gets better during rest.
How is osteoarthritis diagnosed? - The doctor makes the diagnosis of osteoarthritis based on the characteristic symptoms, physical examination, and the x-ray appearance of joints.
What's the treatment for osteoarthritis? - Osteoarthritis is treated with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Severe pain in specific joints can be treated with local injections with lidocaine.
What're the medications for osteoarthritis? - Acetaminophen is used for mild to moderate osteoarthritis. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or COX-2 medications for moderate to severe arthritic pain.
What nutritional supplements cure osteoarthritis? - A combination of glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate is used as a dietary supplement to cure osteoarthritis. Vitamin D and calcium are recommended for strong bones.
Treatments for osteoarthritis pain relief - OTC pain relievers like acetaminophen (Tylenol) and aspirin are familiar choices for the treatment of osteoarthritis pain relief.
What osteoarthritis exercise is suggested? - Regular exercise is very important for successful control of osteoarthritis. Exercise helps patients ostearthritis in the hip or in the knee.
Can osteoarthritis be prevented? - Obese people are at risk of osteoarthritis and that weight loss can help prevent or delay osteoarthritis from occurring.
What is osteoarthritis of the hip? - Osteoarthritis of the hip can cause insidious pain in the groin or inguinal region and, on occasion, pain in the side of the buttock or upper thigh.
What is arthritis? - Arthritis is a group of conditions that affect the health of the bone joints in the body. Arthritis is painful inflammation of a joint or joints of the body.
What types of arthritis are there? - Types of arthritis include osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, gout, infectious arthritis, fibromyalgia, lupus.
What causes arthritis? - The causes of arthritis depend on the form of arthritis. The cause of arthritis may be an infection, injury, abnormality of the immune system, aging.
What're the risk factors for arthritis? - Risk factors for arthritis include age, gender, obesity, injury, ethnicity. The risk of developing arthritis increases with age.
What're the signs and symptoms of arthritis? - Different types of arthritis have different symptoms. Other arthritis symptoms include fatigue, fever, a rash and the signs of joint inflammation.
How is arthritis diagnosed? - The diagnosis of arthritis is based on the pattern of symptoms, medical history, family history, physical examination, X-rays and lab tests.
What's the treatment for arthritis? - The objectives in the treatment of arthritis are controlling inflammation, preserving joint function, and curing the disease if that is possible.
Therapies for arthritis pain relief - Short-term relief for arthritis pain and inflammation may include pain relievers. NSAIDs are used to reduce pain and inflammation.
What natural therapies are available to cure arthritis? - Natural therapies for arthritis pain relief include glucosamine, chondroitin sulfates, nettle leaf, S-adenosylmethionine, and exrutine.
What can be done to prevent arthritis? - Consumption of green tea may prevent arthritis damage and benefit the arthritis patient by reducing inflammation and slowing cartilage breakdown.
What is the Arthritis Foundation? - The Arthritis Foundation is the only nationwide, nonprofit health organization helping take greater control of arthritis in the United States.
What is septic arthritis (infectious arthritis)? - Septic arthritis, also known as infectious arthritis or pyogenic arthritis, is an infection in the joint (synovial) fluid and joint tissues.
What causes septic arthritis? - Septic arthritis develops when bacteria spread from a source of infection through the bloodstream to a joint or the joint is directly infected by traumatic penetration.
What're the symptoms of septic arthritis? - The symptoms of septic arthritis (infectious arthritis) include swelling in the infected joint and pain when the joint is moved.
How is septic arthritis diagnosed? - The diagnosis of infectious arthritis depends on a combination of laboratory testing with careful history-taking and physical examination of the affected joint.
What is the treatment for septic arthritis? - The goal of treatment for septic arthritis is to eliminate the infection with antibiotic therapy. Septic arthritis requires immediate treatment.
What is psoriatic arthritis? - Psoriatic arthritis is a chronic inflammation of the joints that occurs in some people with a chronic skin and nail condition known as psoriasis.
What causes psoriatic arthritis? - The cause of psoriatic arthritis is unknown. Psoriatic is triggered by an attack of the body's own immune system on itself.
What're the symptoms of psoriatic arthritis? - Symptoms of psoriatic arthritis include dry, scaly, silver patches of skin combined with joint pain and destructive changes in the feet, hands, knees, and spine
How is psoriatic arthritis diagnosed? - The diagnosis of psoriatic arthritis is made by identifying the typical symptoms of arthritis in a person with psoriasis.
What's the treatment for psoriatic arthritis? - Treatment of psoriatic arthritis focuses on controlling the skin rash and relieving joint inflammation.
What is Reiter's syndrome (reactive arthritis)? - Reiter's syndrome (reactive arthritis) is a group of symptoms consisting of arthritis, urethritis, conjunctivitis, and lesions of the skin.
What causes Reiter's syndrome (reactive arthritis)? - Reiter's syndrome appears to be a reaction to an infection that begins in an area of the body other than the joints.
What're the symptoms of Reiter's syndrome? - The symptoms of of Reiter's syndrome appear within days or weeks of infection followed by a low-grade fever, conjunctivitis.
How is Reiter's syndrome diagnosed? - Diagnosis of Reiter's syndrome is often difficult because there is no specific test to confirm that a person has reactive arthritis.
What's the treatment for Reiter's syndrome? - The objective of treatment for Reiter's syndrome is to alleviate the symptoms associated with the syndrome and to treat any underlying infection.
What is ankylosing spondylitis? - Ankylosing spondylitis is a chronic inflammatory disease that affects the joints between the vertebrae of the spine, and the joints between the spine and the pelvis.
What causes ankylosing spondylitis? - The specific cause of ankylosing spondylitis is unknown, but the disease tends to run in families, indicating that genetics plays a role.
What're the symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis? - Symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis include back pain, loss of appetite, weight loss, fatigue, and anemia.
How is ankylosing spondylitis diagnosed? - Doctors usually diagnose ankylosing spondylitis simply by the patient's report of pain and stiffness.
What's the treatment for ankylosing spondylitis? - Physical therapy for ankylosing spondylitis can provide a number of benefits, from pain relief to improved physical strength and flexibility.
What is gout (gouty arthritis)? - Gout or gouty arthritis is a form of arthritis caused by the accumulation of uric acid crystals (due to hyperuricemia) in joints.
What causes gout (gouty arthritis)? - Gout is caused by a defect in metabolism which results in an overproduction of uric acid or leads to reduced ability of the kidney to eliminate uric acid.
What are the risk factors for gout? - Risk factors for gout (gouty arthritis) include genetics, age, gender, alcohol use, obesity, medications, and medical conditions.
What're the complications of gout? - Gout often accompanies heart problems, including high blood pressure, coronary artery disease, and congestive heart failure.
What are the symptoms of gout (gouty arthritis)? - An attack of chronic gout is similar to an attack of acute gouty arthritis. The affected joints show signs of warmth, redness, and tenderness.
How is gout diagnosed? - The diagnosis of gout is generally made on a clinical basis. Physicians can diagnose gout based on the physical examination and medical history.
What's the treatment for gout (gouty arthritis)? - The goals of treatment for gout consist of alleviating pain, avoiding severe attacks in the future, and preventing long-term joint damage.
What gout medications are available? - Gout medications include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, colchicine, corticosteroids, xanthine oxidase inhibitors, uricosuric agents.
What gout diet is suggested? - The principle of a gout diet is to reduce purines or lower uric acid when we take food. Avoid foods high in purines. Alcohol should be avoided.
How to prevent gout (gouty arthritis)? - Prevention is the best defense against gout (gouty arthritis). Losing weight and limiting alcohol intake can help ward off gout.
Bone, joint, & muscle disorders

Natural arthritis formula
Arthrit-Eze is the most advanced formula on the market today. It offers potential relief and rejuvenation for all forms of arthritis, safely, naturally and without side effects.

Topics in bone, joint, and muscle disorders

Bone diseases
Bone tumors
Bone cancer
Muscle diseases
Spine (neck and back) disorders
Dupuytren's contracture
Costochondritis
Bunions
Plantar fasciitis
Arthritis
Osteoarthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis
Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis
Septic arthritis (infectious Arthritis)
Psoriatic arthritis
Reiter's syndrome (reactive arthritis)
Ankylosing spondylitis
Gout (gouty arthritis)
Tendinitis
Osteoporosis
Whiplash
Fibromyalgia


All information is intended for reference only. Please consult your physician for accurate medical advices and treatment. Copyright 2005, health-cares.net, all rights reserved. Last update: July 18, 2005