More frequent rheumatic diseases

Agirre, Jabier

Medikua eta OEEko kidea

Almost 14% of the population suffers from some rheumatic disease such as arthritis or osteoarthritis. These alterations are chronic and degenerative, although they can be controlled, even slowing down the confirmation process with proper treatment.
More frequent rheumatic diseases
01/02/2006 | Agirre, Jabier | Doctor and OEE member
(Photo: MEC)

Under the word rheumatism, about 200 diseases have a common characteristic: they affect the locomotor apparatus. Among these diseases, the most common are osteoarthritis and osteoporosis. Rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, gout, or gout are less common. Most of these diseases are chronic and deteriorate the quality of life of the patient due to the pain and mobility problems that affect him.


It is due to the wear of the joint cartilage, that is, the substance that somehow covers the bones that come into contact in a joint deteriorates, so the friction between them is usually greater than normal.

It is a chronic degenerative disease whose main symptoms are pain and loss of mobility. It mainly appears on the knees, hands, hip, spine and thumb of the foot.

Being a degenerative evil, he has no remedy. However, it can slow the progression of the disease and relieve symptoms. The medicines that protect cartilage in recent years have been the ones that have introduced the greatest novelty. These drugs, in addition to preventing disease and stabilizing evolution, can partly 'repair' cartilage and bone injuries.


It also affects men, but osteoporosis is mostly a female disease and appears especially after menopause. It is due to the decrease in bone mass. The bone becomes more fragile and increases the risk of fractures. Osteoporosis itself does not produce pain, but it does produce bone fractures.

Because it is an alteration associated with menopause, hormone replacement therapy can delay the evolution of the disease by the influence of estrogens. On the other hand, drugs against bone resorption, such as alendronates, reduce the process of bone destruction and reduce the risk of fracture.

Rheumatoid arthritis

It is a disease in which the joints increase and, more specifically, the synovial membrane increases. But also to the bone, cartilage and other organs of the body (myocardium, skin, etc.) affects them. The main symptoms are pain, deformation and loss of mobility of the affected joint.

At the moment, this disease has no remedy. Treatments try to reduce inflammation to improve joint mobility. For this purpose, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, corticosteroids and anti-rheumatic drugs that alter the disease are mainly used.


Rheumatic diseases affect the locomotor.

It affects muscles and fibrous tissue. It produces pain in various parts of the body, of varying intensity and general feeling of fatigue or exhaustion. It can also cause memory alterations and depression.

In this case there is no remedy, but symptoms can be alleviated

with appropriate treatment: physical measures (local heat, massage and muscle toning exercises) are combined with drugs such as muscle sedatives, analgesics and local anesthetic or corticosteroid infiltrations. And, if necessary, anxiolytics or antidepressants may be used.


Uric acid crystals appear in some tissues such as the joints of the feet, hands, and legs. The main symptoms are pain, swelling of the joint, fever, and superficial lumps (especially on the thick toe).

Anti-inflammatory drugs are most commonly used in the acute phase of the disease to relieve symptoms. It is recommended to drink plenty of fluids and avoid alcohol, red meat, coffee and seafood. The diet should be rich in vegetables, fresh fruit and whole foods.


Calcium salts are deposited in the articular cartilage and finally the cartilage deteriorates, making it more fragile and may appear symptoms similar to osteoarthritis or arthritis.

If condocinosis does not give symptoms, general measures are sufficient (avoid overweight and avoid joint overload as much as possible). In case of pain, treatment is the same as in case of osteoarthritis.

Health care
Tips against pain
Tempered shower in the painful area.
Apply heat to the affected area.
In case of inflammation, apply cold.
If the pain is acute, rest. Once the crisis is over, it is advisable to avoid a sedentary life to prevent the joint from atrophy and the pain from intensifying.
Moderate exercise: walking, swimming, cycling, etc. This will strengthen the muscles and increase mobility.
Discard overweight. Excess pounds increase pain and erosion.
Does time influence?
A recent study showed that yes, as popular knowledge has always said, time directly influences the damage caused by the booster.
Sudden changes in temperature or pressure affect pain caused by rheumatic disease, allowing some people to predict between 2 and 8 hours before these time changes occur. And reliably.
The pressure increases the pain of osteoarthritis and the cold of arthritis. These are the conclusions of a study conducted in two years controlling 92 rheumatic patients. However, time only affects the perception of symptoms (especially pain) and not the evolution of the disease. The cause is not yet well known, but it seems that pressure changes or cold affect receptors or receptors that regulate pain.
Agirre, Jabier
Health care
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