Seronegative inflammatory arthritis is almost like a condition that is not a condition. When persons are affected with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), their related blood work often shows the presence of abnormalities in something called an RF factor.
People who have the condition known as seronegative inflammatory arthritis experience nearly identical symptoms to people with RA, without supporting laboratory tests to provide evidence of such. In fact, the phrase “seronegative” simply means “negative” in terms of blood work. This means that affected individuals likely exhibit discomfort, joint pain and inflammation which are characteristic of rheumatoid arthritis, with no elevation in their RF factors.
However, an absence of supporting laboratory testing does not mean that sufferers are asymptomatic or that there is nothing wrong. Most commonly, persons with seronegative inflammatory arthritis are diagnosed as such or with other named conditions like seronegative RA, seronegative spondyloarthropathy or BASE syndrome, but spondyloarthropathy is the most common of these. This catch all phrase refers in fact to a number of conditions including Whipple’s disease, enteropathic arthritis, reactive arthritis, psoriatic arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis. There are some differences between each of these collective conditions, however they all share similarities in that they are all related to autoimmune problems and they all result in inflammatory arthritis as a symptom and defining characteristic.
Both the similarities and differences between RA and spondyloarthropathy are very important. One of the major ways in which the differences are important is that spondyloarthropathy is more prevalent in men. Additionally, there are specific complications that are related to these non-RA forms of arthritis that are worth noting as well, which include an increased risk of psoriasis, urethritis, disease of the eye, canker sores, and inflammatory disease of the bowel. This is important because these secondary conditions almost serve as symptoms of spondyloarthropathy, alongside the joint pain that is a hallmark trait of the condition and the RA that it resembles.
An interesting difference in these pain symptoms however is location. In the case of identifiable RA, pain and discomfort is almost always symmetrical, and occurs at the same joints on both sides of the body. Conversely, those with other types of inflammatory arthritis such as those included in spondyloarthropathy may experience it in more locations throughout the body and outside of specific joints, including places where tendons and bones are attached. In addition, unlike RA, spondyloarthropathy (or, seronegative inflammatory arthritis) may affect the spine and commonly produces discomfort in the ankles and feet.
Treatment for seronegative arthritis is a little different than in the case of RA as well, although there is no cure for either condition or set of conditions. In addition to anti-inflammatory medication and pain relievers, treating seronegative RA often includes treating other symptoms and problems aside from those simply involving joint pain relief. In the case of inflammatory bowel diseases, for instance, dietary changes may be required. And, in the case of present psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis treatment is needed including creams and topicals for the skin related symptoms of the condition.
Pain relief for arthritis itself as it related to spondyloarthropathy is not as clear cut as rheumatoid arthritis treatment because seronegative RA encompasses numerous conditions that all have their own symptoms and complications. One common trait amongst all of these types of inflammatory arthritis that are not related to the rheumatoid form of the condition is that the spine and its joints and ligaments are often involved. This means that the most commonly ordered methods of treatment for the collection of conditions include physical therapy and exercise, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications and drugs used in the treatment of RA when conditions persist, recur or become chronic.
Because there is no cure for the types of inflammatory arthritis that make up seronegative RA, lifestyle changes that can assist in arthritis pain management are often just as important as medications in terms of controlling discomfort. One treatment in particular that was perfected specifically for treating rheumatoid arthritis can also be hugely beneficial in providing relief to sufferers of its related conditions. Cryotherapy cold sauna, a treatment in which liquid nitrogen cools the safe parts of exposed skin, can help to reduce the pain related to various types of arthritis in numerous ways. The virtually side effect free treatment helps to numb pain recepting nerve endings, boost body repairing immune processes and initiate the release of chemicals in the body that reduce pain instantly. Cryotherapy cold sauna is a unique type of treatment available in Toronto, because it not only provides immediate relief to arthritis symptoms, but has also been shown to help reduce pain for weeks following treatment. It’s thought to be an excellent form of treatment for various types of inflammatory arthritis that can help provide pain relief either in conjunction to or in place of the use of medications.