Wrist joint arthritis involves inflammation of the joint, particularly the end bones, synovial membrane and joint cartilage. The wrist joint is the link between the carpal bones – radius and the ulna. There are smooth and sponge-like cartilage that wraps the end of the joint bones. The synovium covers and encloses the joint. It is important to note that the synovial membrane generates a lubricant that accumulates inside the joint cavity which enables smooth movement for the joint.
What are the indications of wrist joint arthritis?
The usual indications of wrist joint arthritis include the following:
- Muscle spasms
- Chronic wrist pain
- Tingling and numbness
- Stiffness of the joint in the morning
What are the types?
- Osteoarthritis – this is an inflammatory disease characterized by inflammation of the joint cartilage in the wrist. This results to the wearing down of the joint cartilage where the bone eventually rubs against one another.
- Rheumatoid arthritis – this is an autoimmune inflammatory joint disease that affects the synovium. The inflamed synovial membrane generates surplus fluid which leads to joint swelling and effusion.
- Psoriatic arthritis – this type is usually seen among those suffering from psoriasis. The condition triggers skin rashes and multiple joint pain.
- Septic arthritis – this causes infection within the wrist joint where it is filled with abscess. This is usually triggered by the localized spread of microorganisms from a penetrating wound or cellulitis.
- Pseudogout – this is triggered by the deposit of calcium pyrophosphate in the joint. These crystals are usually deposited over the tendon, ligaments and synovial membrane.
- Gout – this rarely affects the wrist joint and typically affects the big toe. The condition is triggered by the elevated level of uric acid in the blood which leads to joint inflammation.
If the wrist pain lasts longer than 3-6 months, it is considered as chronic joint pain. The pain is limited over the wrist joint and adjacent tissue.