Psoriatic arthritis is an inflammatory disease that affects the joints, in addition to other structures of the musculoskeletal system (spine, tendons), which causes pain, swelling, and difficulty in movement and suffered by around 250,000 people in Spain. And Back pain is the most common reason people see a doctor, and AllSpine has back care specialists who handle pain relief & more.
These Are its Most Outstanding Characteristics:
1- It Is A Disease Within Another
What comes first? Skin disease ( psoriasis ) and joint disease (arthritis) usually arise separately.
More often than not, skin disease appears before joint symptoms.
Therefore, in most cases, arthritis can be considered as an evolution or progression of the skin disease but borne in mind that only about 20-30% of those affected by psoriasis develop it.
Psoriatic arthritis, which classified in the group of rheumatic pathologies called spondyloarthrosis. And evolves irregularly throughout life, alternating periods of inactivity and other times of inflammation and pain.
It affects men and women equally and usually occurs between the ages of 30 and 50, although it can occur in people of any age.
2- It Has An Essential Genetic Component
Its cause is unknown but believed to be the consequence of a sum of genetic, immunological, and environmental factors.
Juan Cañete, the rheumatologist at the Hospital Barcelona Clinic and coordinator of the Psoriatic Arthritis.
And Working Group of the Spanish Society of Rheumatology (SER), explains that this pathology even more linked to genetics than psoriasis; it is easier to inherit it.
Several genes related to it discovered and known that the sons of affected men are much more likely to develop it than the descendants of women who suffer from it.
The determining genetic components are not yet known for sure but found that 40 percent of patients have affected close relatives.
Genes linked to what is known as the HLA system seem to play a significant role. Which helps the immune system to distinguish the body’s proteins from foreign ones, such as those produced by bacteria or viruses.
Genes linked to inflammation pathways are also important, though less so.
3- The Emotional Factor Influences Its Appearance
Among the environmental factors associated with a greater or lesser extent with psoriatic arthritis. Such as obesity, smoking, certain infections, trauma. Besides, proven that psychological disorders can act as triggers in predisposed people.
The psychological stress generated, for example, by a change of address associated with the development of psoriatic arthritis, says Cañete.
Mood disturbances also precipitate outbreaks of the disease.
4- Some Alarm Signals Help Early Diagnosis Of Psoriatic Arthritis
Both who investigate this disease and those who treat patients have a priority objective: to diagnose it as early as possible to start treatment as soon as possible.
The less time elapses from the appearance of the pathology to the moment of diagnosis, the higher the chances of therapeutic success.
The ideal would be to have markers – for example, detectable by a simple blood test – that allow knowing in advance which people with psoriasis will develop psoriatic arthritis over time.
As these more precise tools developed, some actions facilitate early diagnosis.
The most relevant is the fluid communication between dermatologists, who treat psoriasis, and rheumatologists, who are in charge of rheumatologic pathology.
Juan Cañete breaks down some of the clues that may alert us to the future development of psoriatic arthritis.
Many people with mild psoriasis believe that they are safe from this pathology. But they should know that the risk of psoriatic arthritis not only linked to moderate forms and serious. But also to other milder ones that go unnoticed.
Such as psoriasis of the scalp, navel, or intergluteal sulcus. The threat is more significant if they also have, for example, knee pain without having suffered trauma.
5- There Are Very Effective Treatments For Psoriatic Arthritis
Fortunately, treatments available, most patients can lead healthy lives. And many of them are in remission, which means that they do not show symptoms.
The dermatologist emphasizes that, currently, the percentage of patients who do not achieve reduction has reduced to 20-30%.
Recently, new drugs have emerged whose benefits maximized when administered in the early stages of the disease.
In addition to anti-inflammatory drugs and corticosteroids (in small doses orally or in the form of intra-articular infiltrations).
There are so-called disease modifiers that, by mechanisms other than anti-inflammatory medications, interfere with inflammation-related processes.
So achieving a significant improvement in a substantial percentage of patients.
Likewise, in individual patients. They used by biological people, which proteins specifically designed to bind to others. And involved in the development of the disease and inhibit its activity.
But the treatment should not be exclusively pharmacological. There are rehabilitation programs that improve the quality of life of patients and measures to alleviate inflammation of the joints.
Cañete also highlights the crucial role of aspects related to lifestyle. And which summarized in practicing moderate exercise.
Also avoiding excessive mechanical stress on the joints, avoiding obesity, healthy eating, not smoking, moderating alcohol consumption.
It also recommended trying to live in “an environment not too stressful, which can precipitate outbreaks of psoriasis and arthritis.”