Joint pain is a common symptom experienced by those suffering from autoimmune diseases. While joint pain itself can be caused by a number of factors, there is a strong link between autoimmune diseases and joint pain. It is important to understand the connection between joint pain and autoimmune diseases to better diagnose and treat these conditions.
What Are Autoimmune Diseases?
Autoimmune diseases are when our body’s immune system mistakenly attacks healthy cells, tissues, and organs. When healthy cells, tissues, and organs are attacked, the result can be inflammation and pain. Some of the most common autoimmune diseases include: lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, celiac disease, Type 1 diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and psoriasis, among others.
Signs & Symptoms of Autoimmune Diseases
While each autoimmune disease is unique, there are some common signs and symptoms associated with autoimmune diseases that may manifest in someone experiencing joint pain. These include: fatigue, low-grade fever, rash, muscle pain, and swollen and tender joints.
The Connection Between Autoimmune Diseases and Joint Pain
The connection between autoimmune diseases and joint pain is often missed or misdiagnosed. This can lead to an increased risk of the autoimmune disease progressing and causing permanent damage to the joints.
When the body’s immune system mistakes healthy cells, tissues, and organs, this (in addition to inflammation) can cause joint pain. Joint pain due to autoimmune diseases is often accompanied by swelling, tenderness, and stiffness. Joint pain can be localized around one joint or be more generalized and affect multiple joints.
Diagnosis & Treatment of Joint Pain
When joint pain is suspected to be caused by an autoimmune disease, doctors will need to perform a physical exam, imaging tests such as X-rays, blood tests, and may even perform a biopsy to confirm the diagnosis.
The treatment of joint pain caused by autoimmune diseases will depend on the type of autoimmune disease being treated. Typically, treatment for joint pain includes medications, lifestyle changes, and physical therapy. Some autoimmune diseases may also require surgery or other treatments.
Joint pain is a common symptom experienced by those suffering from autoimmune diseases. It is important to understand the connection between autoimmune diseases and joint pain in order to diagnose and treat these conditions. It is also important to talk to your healthcare provider if you are experiencing joint pain in order to get the right diagnosis and treatment.
Keywords: joint pain, autoimmune diseases, inflammation, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment