Rheumatoid arthritis often affects the joints of the hands and fingers, and immediately on both sides, which transforms the simplest actions into unbearable torture.
The known difference between rheumatoid arthritis (autoimmune disease) and osteoarthritis (caused by excessive joint loading) is its symmetrical development.
Causes of the disease have not yet been established. Probably a failure in the immune system provokes bacteria or viruses.
It was also noticed that there is a genetic predisposition to rheumatoid arthritis. Women suffer from it 2-3 times more often than men, but they can aggravate the disease in the background of a hormonal outbreak in the postpartum period, although the birth of children and lactation, on the contrary, contribute to the protection of the immune system.
Doctors note that the defeat of the synovial membrane of the joints of the hands and fingers causes particularly strong pain, as compared to manifestations of rheumatoid arthritis in other joints (legs, elbows, shoulders, neck, jaw).
Distinct signs of rheumatoid arthritis in addition to general symptoms (pain, numbness and joint enlargement) are creaky joints, deformation of the middle joints of the fingers, numbness and tingling of the wrists.
In addition, rheumatoid arthritis is characterized by severe fatigue, malaise, fever, and prolonged morning sickness and real estate.
Types of deformations
As for the deformations of the fingers, the two are especially common: the type of the neck of the swan and the contracture of Weinstein. In the first case, there is a flexion of the base of the finger and its extreme outer joint, while the middle joint remains straight. As a result, the finger looks twisted. At the same time, it is impossible to perform normally such actions as button fastening, holding the glass, or taking anything with a pinch.
The second type of distortion occurs due to chronic inflammation of the middle joint of the finger, which causes it to bend in the direction of the palm, and the outer side of the joint bends in the opposite direction. Treatment of these deformations is carried out with the help of special finger or ring tires, as well as surgically.
Treatment of rheumatoid arthritis of hands
As it is easier to prevent any disease than to treat, physicians recommend to rest their joints more often (not forgetting about their training), enrich their diet with vitamin D products, omega-3 fatty acids and regularly undergo a medical examination.
If preventive measures have not been acted upon, doctors have a whole arsenal of drugs from the group of basic anti-rheumatic drugs that modify the course of the disease, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and biological response modifiers.
In addition to medical therapy, you can make compresses with moist heat (dilate blood vessels and facilitate blood flow in the affected areas) or cold (vessels narrow, reduce sensitivity and reduce swelling). In the first case, you can use a dipped in hot water with a towel, and in the second - to wrap the ice in the cloth.
Also, special auxiliary devices that facilitate life during arthritis will be superfluous: soft foam balls for hand work, "Velcro" instead of buttons on clothes, comfortable door handles, kitchen and tableware with a light weight.
It is also recommended to avoid uneven loads, strain individual joints and not neglect such activities as playing piano and embroidery.