Common Arthritis Terms That Can Help You
Understand What We're Talking About
Arthritis - Inflammation of a joint, usually accompanied by pain, swelling, and stiffness resulting from infection, trauma, degenerative changes, metabolic disturbances, or other causes. There are many kinds, such as bacterial arthritis, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, gout or dermatomyositis.
Arthroscopy - Examination of the interior of a joint, such as the knee, using a type of telescope that is inserted into the joint through a small incision.
Bursa - A sac or saclike bodily cavity, especially one containing a viscous lubricating fluid and located between a tendon and a bone or at points of friction between moving structures.
Bursitis - Inflammation of a bursa, especially in the shoulder, elbow, or knee joint.
Fibromyalgia - A syndrome characterized by chronic pain in the muscles and soft tissues surrounding joints, fatigue, and tenderness at specific sites in the body. Also called fibromyalgia syndrome, fibromyositis, fibrositis.
Gout - A disturbance of uric acid metabolism occurring chiefly in males, characterized by painful inflammation of the joints, especially of the feet and hands, and arthritic attacks resulting from elevated levels of uric acid in the blood and the deposition of urate crystals around the joints. The condition can become chronic and result in deformity.
Inflammation - A reaction of tissue or joints to injury or disease that shows up as swelling, heat, redness and/or pain.
Joint - The junction where two bones meet. They are usually composed of ligaments, cartilage, synovium, joint space and fibrous capsule.
Ligaments - The banded cord-like tissue that connect the bones.
Osteoarthritis - A form of arthritis, occurring mainly in older persons, that is characterized by chronic degeneration of the cartilage of the joints. Also called degenerative joint disease.
Osteoporosis - A disease in which the bones become extremely porous, are subject to fracture, occurring especially in women following menopause and often leads to collapse of the spine and broken hips.
Range of Motion - A measurement of how much a joint can go through all of its normal motion.
Rheumatoid Arthritis - A chronic disease marked by stiffness and inflammation of the joints, weakness, loss of mobility, and potential crippling.
Rheumatology - The medical specialty that deals with the study and treatment of rheumatic diseases such as arthritis.
Tendonitis - Inflammation of a tendon.
Tendons - The fibrous cords that connect the bone and muscle.