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Reactive Arthritis

Reactive Arthritis

This is the condition triggered by some infection in the intestine, genitals and urinary tract that leads to the painful swelling in the joints. In the past reactive arthritis was known as Reiter’s syndrome which presents as inflammation of eye, urethra and joints.

Symptoms

The symptoms include:Reactive Arthritis Symptoms Treatment

  • Knees, ankles and feet joints become stiff and painful. Heel or lower back can also become painful.
  • Inflammation of eye leads to conjunctivitis
  • Inflammation of prostate glands and cervix leads to increase urination and irritation during urination.
  • Toes and fingers become swollen
  • Mouth sores and rashes on skin
  • Lower back pain
Causes

Reactive arthritis usually develope after some infection in the intestine, uriurinary tract or genitals. Reactive arthritis is not contagious.Most common triggers are:

  • Chlamydia
  • Salmonella
  • Shigella
  • Yersinia
  • Campylobacter
  • Clostridium difficile
Diagnosis

Diagnosis is done by having a detailed medical history and complete general physical examination of the patient. Other investigations and tests include:

  • Blood test.
  • Joint fluid test to check for WBCs count, presence of infection and uric acid crystals
  • X-rays of joints
Treatment

Treatment options include the following:

  • Medication like corticosteroids, topical steroids non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) or some rheumatoid arthritis drugs.
  • Physical therapy to manage the range of motion.
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