Psoriatic arthritis is a unique inflammatory arthritis associated with psoriasis. According to the Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases, approximately one percent of the general population will develop this disorder. If you have psoriasis, your odds of getting psoriatic arthritis increase to approximately 30 percent. If you suspect that may have psoriatic arthritis, it is extremely important that you have your symptoms checked as soon as possible for the following reasons:
The clinical features of the disease tend to change over time. When psoriatic arthritis first occurs, there are often patterns of arthritis that happen, which can help distinguish psoriatic arthritis from other types of arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis. However, over time the patterns can change, and it can be more difficult to identify the symptoms as being related to psoriatic arthritis.
Psoriatic arthritis can become a severe disease. Not long ago, it was thought that psoriatic arthritis was less severe than rheumatoid arthritis. However, according to the Annals of Rheumatic Disease, over the past two decades it has become clear that psoriatic arthritis is much more aggressive than previously thought. About 20 percent of those with psoriatic arthritis develop a very destructive and disabling form of arthritis. After 10 years with the disease, 55 percent have five or more deformed joints.
Lifestyle modifications can be made for disease improvement. If you find out you have psoriatic arthritis, there are certain lifestyle modifications you can make to improve how you feel. For example, quitting smoking, eating a healthy diet, and exercising can help you live your best life if you have psoriatic arthritis.
You may discover other issues that need medical attention. Joint tenderness, pain around the feet and ankles, and pain in the lower back can all be symptoms of psoriatic arthritis according to the National Psoriasis Foundation. However, these same symptoms can also be related to other disorders that may need immediate medical attention. Your general practitioner will be able to make an assessment and refer you to a specialist to help get to the bottom of your discomfort.
You can begin treatment and feel better. There are now various treatment options available for those who have psoriatic arthritis. Many have proven to be successful and some of the options have even been associated with disease remission. Positive
responses to some treatments have even been seen as quickly as in one week.
According to the National Psoriasis Foundation, if you suspect you have symptoms of psoriatic arthritis, you should report it to your doctor as soon as possible. Even waiting as long as six months can lead to significantly more joint and bone damage and worse disability.