What Are the Causes of Joint Inflammation?

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The cause of joint inflammation can be acute or chronic and occur anywhere in the body. Inflammation of joints is the result of an underlying medical condition and proper diagnosis will determine the treatment needed to ease or stop inflammation. Some causes of joint inflammation are due to infection, injury, arthritis, wear and tear, abnormal autoimmune response or disease.

Gout

  • Gout is a form of arthritis that causes joint inflammation usually in the big toe and can affect the foot and ankle. Gout is caused by high levels of uric acid, a waste product, in the blood. Crystals are deposited into the joints causing inflammation, pain, burning and stiffness. The symptoms can come and go with months or years between attack and last a few days to a few weeks.

Bursitis

  • The bursae are sacs filled with fluid that cushion and lubricate joints. When the bursa in a joint becomes inflamed, movement is painful. Joint inflammation can occur in hips, knee, elbows, shoulders or heel. Bursitis can be caused by trauma, overuse, arthritis, gout or infection. Symptoms that occur include stiffness, aches, pain, swelling, skin that appears red and warm to the touch.

Chondromalacia Patella

  • A cause of joint inflammation may be chondromalacia patella or damage that affects the cartilage under the kneecap. It's also referred to as patellofemoral pain. The cartilage softens and breaks down allowing the bones of the knee joint to grind together. This causes pain that may feel dull and achy and increases when squatting, going up and down stairs, kneeling or sitting for extended periods. If the knee is swollen, red, painful even when resting and accompanied by fever, see a doctor immediately.

Hepatitis

  • There are six types of hepatitis, A, B, C, D, E and G. Hepatitis can be acute, improving with treatment, or chronic which leads to lifelong health problems. Acute hepatitis that is caused by a virus, acetaminophen or exposure to chemicals may be the cause of joint inflammation and pain. Autoimmune hepatitis is the result of the body's immune system attacking itself. One of the symptoms is joint pain and inflammation.

Contagious Diseases

  • Contagious diseases such as measles, mumps and rubella are caused by a virus spread by coming into contact with an infected person. It's also spread by droplets in the air from an infected person coughing or sneezing. Some common symptoms that occur are joint inflammation, pain, and muscle aches.

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