Reactive arthritis is nothing, but a joint pain and inflammation that is triggered by an infection in some other part of the body. Generally, it is associated with infection in the urinary tract, genitals or intestines. The target areas of this type of arthritis are generally the feet, ankles and knees. Even, swelling can occur in urethra, skin and eyes as well when a patient has this health issue. Even though, this type of arthritis is sometimes known as Reiter’s Syndrome, Reiter’s is actually a particular type of reactive joint pain. In the case of Reiter’s the swelling generally affects the urethra, eyes and joints. The symptoms associated with this type of arthritis are generally not common and the symptoms and signs of this issue come and go and they will eventually disappear within a short period of 12 months or so.
Generally, the symptoms and signs associated with this condition generally begin, a week to three weeks after the infection has triggered. Here are the common symptoms experienced by patients:
Stiffness and pain: Joint pain associated with this condition generally occurs in feet, ankles and knees. Even, some patients will experience ache in buttocks or low back and heals as well.
Eye inflammation: Many patients with this condition will also experience eye inflammation, which is otherwise called as conjunctivitis.
Urinary problems: When there is an increase in the urine output and when an individual has some discomfort when urinating, it can be because of the inflammation of cervix or prostate gland caused by Reactive joint pain.
Swollen fingers or toes: In some cases, patients will experience inflammation in their fingers and toes just like sausages.
Certain factors can increase the chances of a patient getting reactive joint pain and they are:
• Age: This condition generally occurs in patients between the age group of 20 and 40 years.
• Sex: Both men and women can get this health issue as a reaction to the infections that affect them through the foods consumed. However, reports state that men are more prone to this condition as against women.
• Hereditary factors: A specific genetic factor is stated to be associated with reactive arthritis.
As mentioned earlier, this condition develops in reaction to an infection in some other part of the body and the patient may not be aware of the triggering infection as it generally causes only a mild symptom. Different bacteria cause this condition and the most common of them include:
This is actually not a contagious condition. However, it can be sexually transmitted or it can also be transmitted through contaminated food as well.
Drugs and treatment:
Generally, the treatment will aim at management of symptoms and treating the underlying infection. For instance, if it is triggered because of bacterial infection, an antibiotic will be prescribed. This medication will be decided on the basis of the type of bacteria that has caused the infection. For joint pain relief, corticosteroids, NSAIDs and rheumatoid arthritis drugs may be prescribed.