8 Early Signs of Rheumatism (Part 3)

8 Early Signs of rheumatism (Part 3)

6. Joint pain

Pain is a very strange and complex thing that is still widely misunderstood both in a medical context and in the eyes of an untrained public. Usually though, pain is a sign that something is wrong and certainly in the case of rheumatism, joint pain in the wrists, fingers and feet can be an early indication of the presence of the condition. The associated inflammation of rheumatism  causes the lining of the joints to thicken, resulting in extra joint fluid being produced. These factors on their own are problematic, but when they combine forces they can really irritate the nerve endings, triggering pain sensors and really adding injury to existing injury. The manoeuvrability and manipulation of a person’s wrists and ankles can be difficult as the disease progresses, meaning that ligaments and tendons can be affected. Usually the wrists and ankles become stiff, painful and awkward to bend or straighten.

7. Joint swelling

The appearance of swollen hands and feet, either unilaterally or bilaterally, is a very common indicator of the presence of rheumatism. In fact, swelling, on top of pain, may well be the most commonly mentioned indicator that people bring up with medical professionals. The reason for this is simple. If it doesn’t look right, the chances are that it isn’t right, and so even when swelling is fairly subtle, people tend to act on it and seek advice. Some people with rheumatism notice that the swelling occurs on both legs or both arms at the same time, and a symmetrical occurrence of swelling with no obvious reason could well be a good indicator of rheumatism, as symmetry is fairly typical with this disease. Caution is best exercised here though, as not everyone with the condition experiences symmetrical swellings. The symptoms have common traits throughout every person they affect, but the disease manifests differently in every one unfortunate enough to develop it.

8. Joint redness and warmth

A red appearance in the joints can tell a person that they are suffering with inflammation, with no need to seek medical advice to confirm that fact. Discoloration of the skin that surrounds an affected joint as it happens, particularly when that joint is in the hands or feet, is a very useful early sign of rheumatism. The red colouration happens as the inflammation sets a chain reaction in to motion, where blood vessels try to widen in the skin surrounding the joint. The stretched, but wider vessels mean that more blood is able to flow to the affected area, bringing with it the means to repair and oxygenate. The colour that comes with it is avoidable and so much like with a bruise, the blood under the surface of the skin causes a change in the colour of the skin externally. The warmth that is experienced in partnership with this redness can also be used as an early sign of the presence of rheumatism. 

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8 Early Signs of Rheumatism (Part 1)

Excellent advice from the NHS website

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