Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease of the joints, and when it affects the hand or wrist, the affected individuals suffer from pain while using their hand. Arthritis can affect any joint in the body, often due to aging, and the hand, being one of the most used joints in the body, is often affected. Arthritis primarily affects older people.
However, it can affect people at any age, mostly women. Women are more likely to develop the signs and symptoms of arthritis between the ages of 20 to 30 years old. Doctors for arthritis in hands estimated that more than 60% of people over the age of 60 have signs and symptoms of arthritis, while almost 90% of people over the age of 75 have these signs and symptoms.
Signs and symptoms of arthritis include:
PAIN: this is the most common complaint, and it is associated with arthritis when it occurs directly in the joint and increases due to increased usage of the joint. As the condition worsens, it causes difficulty in using the hand.
INFLAMMATION: this happens especially when the joint is infected, and the swollen area becomes tender to the touch.
LOSS OF MOTION: the affected person may have difficulty moving the hand, either due to pain or sometimes just an inability to flex the joint as before.
CRACKING JOINTS: cracking of the joints signifies a wearing down of the cartilages and it is recommended not to do it.