What Is Psoriatic Arthritis?

 

Psoriatic arthritis is a type of arthritis that typically develops in people who have skin psoriasis. Both are autoimmune diseases, meaning the immune system attacks parts of the body. With psoriatic arthritis, the immune system attacks the joints.

Symptoms of psoriatic arthritis include pain, swelling, and stiffness in the joints, usually in fingers, toes, ankles, knees, and wrists. Some people have very mild cases of psoriatic arthritis, while others experience it more severely. The disease can also go into remission, giving you periods where you feel "normal." Both men and women are equally at risk for psoriatic arthritis, and it usually appears between the ages of 30 and 55 in those who have psoriasis. 

Because psoriatic arthritis shares many symptoms with other forms of arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis, it can be difficult to diagnose. Your doctor will want to know what your symptoms are, when they started, and whether you have a family history of the disease. Although there isn’t a cure, there are a few different medications for psoriatic arthritis that can help you manage the symptoms. If your psoriasis isn’t severe, over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen (like Motrin and Advil) or naproxen (like Aleve) may help. More serious cases usually require stronger drugs, such as disease-modifying antirheumatic agents (DMARDs) or biologic therapy.

 
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