Hand arthritis mostly affects the fingers and the wrist when the joints become inflamed which becomes very painful. A joint usually has two bones which join and is covered or protected or cushioned by cartilage. When this cartilage is damaged, the cushioning effect is lost and the bones rub against each other.
When this increases, inflammation occurs in the joints resulting in acute pain and immobility. As the hands are made up of many bones, arthritis will affect them more and the most affected part will be the fingers and mostly the thumb.
Most Common Types of Arthritis In The Hands
Post Traumatic Hand Arthritis
This arthritis occurs due to trauma experienced from hand injuries wherein the cartilage is damaged. Fractures as well as dislocations can be the reason for this. In fact, an injured hand is more prone to arthritis.
Osteoarthritis of the hands mostly affects the old people and is actually the degeneration of the bones. The hand is sometimes deformed making mobility of the hand difficult and even small chores become complicated for the sufferer. .
Rheumatoid arthritis of the hand
Rheumatoid arthritis can be passed genetically from parents to children and is caused by the synovia tissue damaging not only the bones but also the joints. The resulting inflammation can even cause deformity to the hand. The knuckles as well as the wrist are more affected.
Effect of Arthritis on the Thumb and Other Fingers
When the thumb suffers more stress than it can bear, wear and tear occurs which leads to thumb arthritis. The base of the thumb is affected which will also have its effect on the wrist as the first bone of the thumb and the wrist bone have a joint under the fleshy part of the finger very close to the wrist. Swelling and pain occur in the thumb making it difficult to even hold things or accomplish simple tasks like turning the doorknob or opening a bottle, turning the key, etc. When the end joints of the finger are affected by arthritis, it forms cysts which can cause damage to the nail plate of the finger that has been affected.
How is Arthritis of the Hand Diagnosed?
Arthritis is mostly diagnosed by X-rays, but sometimes a scan will be needed for correct diagnosis. Arthroscopy also is done sometimes which is inserting a camera into the joint to study the damage caused, but is not always done as it is an invasive procedure.
What are the Effects of Arthritis on the Sufferer?
Pain occurs when the joint is used for a long time and may persist for a couple of days. Pain and stiffness in the hands in the morning time is another indication of arthritis in the hands. The person suffering from arthritis finds it difficult and painful to grip or grasp heavy things. Even holding a cup of tea sometimes turns out to be painful. The affected part swells up due to inflammation.
Arthritis has become very common today maybe because of the food habits and lack of calcium intake. Arthritis of the hands affects the daily routine and immobilizes the person which turns out to be a trauma to the sufferer.