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Knuckles hurt on waking up, mild pain throughout the day, difficulty in closing. How can I improve the symptoms?

Hi, when I wake up in the morning especially my knuckles in my hand hurt. It continues in the day but not as intense. There is no swelling . Not in the palms. Mainly forefinger and middle finger on both hands. They are hard to close and to open bottles or use bottle openers. I am 47 yo female. If its arthritis , what can I do to improve the symptoms?
Asked On : Wed, 22 Aug 2012
Answers:  2 Views:  2600
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General & Family Physician 's  Response
Hi welcome to healthcare magic

There are different kinds of arthritis (inflammation of the joint) , the main ones are osteoarthritis , rheumatoid arthritis, arthritis secondary to gout. It can also occur secondary to infections or systemic disease such as lupus.
If due to systemic disease they may or may not be other symptoms.

Rheumatoid arthritis presents with tender swollen joints, morning stiffness which lasts for a long time, firm bumps under the skin and in some cases fatigue and weight loss .It usually starts in the smaller joints such as the the fingers and toes before moving to the larger joints. It is diagnosed by blood tests which may show inflammation in the body and the presence of rheumatoid factor. Xrays can also be done. Treatment varies according to the severity.
Osteoartritis differs in terms of the cause and symptoms. The stiffness experienced is usually not as long on mornings. You may hear a grating sensation ( usually with larger joints)
Gout is diagnosed by the presence of excess uric acid and is usually associated with sudden severe attacks of pain , redness and tenderness.

You will need to see your doctor to diagnose the cause of your pain and to determine if it is arthritis. Your doctor will take a full history, examine the joints in question and may perform a systemic examination to rule out systemic disease. The investigations done would depend on the results.
There are other causes of pain in the hands other than arthritis and your doctor will assess for these.

I hope this helps and I hope that you feel better soon
Answered: Fri, 24 Aug 2012
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General & Family Physician Dr. Ramesh M.Vachharajani's  Response
Hi, Thanks for query,
It seems that you might be having Rheumatoid arthritis affecting small joints.
Go for blood uric acid estimation to rule out Gout.
Ok and bye.
Answered: Fri, 24 Aug 2012
I find this answer helpful
Disclaimer: These answers are for your information only and not intended to replace your relationship with your treating physician.
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