Prepare Mag: August 2018 - page 12

Common skin bacteria, such as Streptococcus and
Staphylococcus, are the usual suspects; certain sexually
transmitted diseases, like gonorrhea can also be the cause,
although viruses and even fungi may be involved.
Typical symptoms of a bacterial arthritis are the same as
osteoarthritis, except that the patient may have a fever and
may exhibit redness or warmth over the affected joint. In
addition to treatment for pain, arthrocentesis (removal of
fluid with a needle) and intravenous antibiotics in the Keflex
(Fish-Flex) family (cephalosporins) or others may be helpful if
the cause is bacterial.
Psoriatic Arthritis
Psoriasis is a relatively common skin condition that causes
the formation of multiple red, scaly patches. This leads to
itching and may be considered by some unsightly, but 30 per
cent of sufferers also develop inflammation of the joints
known as “psoriatic arthritis”.
Psoriatic arthritis victims may be differentiated from
degenerative arthritis by nail changes that look like fungal
infections, redness in the eyes, excessive fatigue, and swollen
fingers and toes (the areas most commonly affected). The
condition is most commonly treated with NSAIDs like
ibuprofen for pain, steroids, and anti-psoriasis
pharmaceuticals. Early treatment may lead to less severe
damage to joints.
Gout
Gout is another condition that destroys joints over time.
Inflammation is caused by deposition of uric acid crystals in
the joint. Some people simply produce too much uric acid or
don’t eliminate it well. Obesity is a major risk factor, as is
diabetes. This illness occurs primarily in men; a history of
certain types of kidney stones may be associated with
episodes of gout.
The presentation of gout will appear as:
•Inflammation in one or two joints. The big toe is the classic
example, but knees and ankles may also be affected.
•Warm, red, painful joints. The pain is throbbing and often
severe. Even laying a sheet over it may cause pain.
•Fever.
•Episodic repeat attacks (50% of cases).
After multiple episodes, permanent damage occurs and the
joint loses its range of motion. Chronic sufferers may also
develop lumps composed of uric acid crystals called
“tophi”. Tophi are lumps below the skin, mostly around
joints. They may drain chalky material from time to time.
Specialized prescription drugs are available for gout, such as
Colchicine and Allopurinol. If you have a family member with
gout, encourage them to stockpile extra medications; they
won’t be found in your standard medic’s storage.
Natural Options For Arthritis
• Lifestyle and dietary changes may be helpful in
improving the quality of life of individuals with arthritis.
Consider the following changes:
• Avoiding alcohol
• Reducing how many uric acid elevating foods you eat.
These include: Liver, red meat, herring, sardines,
anchovies, kidney, beans, peas, mushrooms, asparagus,
and cauliflower.
• Avoiding fatty foods
• Eating enough carbohydrates
Of course, long-term steroids are going to be scarce in a long-
term survival setting, so you’ll have to get by with your
supply of NSAIDs. There are, however, plenty of natural
methods of dealing with joint pain. Many of these can come
from plants you can grow or from simple therapies that just
require heat, cold, or your hands.
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