Hand arthritis is a widespread problem among women after a certain age. In a few cases, men also suffer from hand arthritis. However, hand arthritis majorly has been seen in women because they put lots of pressure while doing household chores, carrying heavy buckets, and holding their child in their lap. Medical science discovers a wide range of advanced treatments to prevent and manage hand arthritis. It may cause severe problems and even affect the kidney, heart, skin, and lungs if it is untreated.
In this article, we will talk about the consequences of delaying hand arthritis treatment, but before that, we would like to define the problem.
Before preventing and managing the disease, you must know what it is.
Hand arthritis is defined as the pain and stiffness in your forearm joint and finger joints. Hand arthritis can be rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis. The symptoms are quite the same in both of the cases. Hand arthritis takes place in the base of your thumb linked with your wrist, the joint closest to your fingertips, and the middle joint of the finger.
Which factors make the hand arthritis condition worse?
Generally, the arthritis symptoms become worse in the morning. Apart from that, other triggering factors are:
- Cold weather
- Elevated blood pressure
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Excessive activity
- Repetitive motion
Severe Consequence of delaying hand arthritis treatment
If hand arthritis is not treated initially, it may show long-term effects. As hand rheumatoid arthritis progresses, it can develop inflammation and pain to other finger joints, joints of elbow, shoulder, and wrist. Hand arthritis damages the fibrous tissue around the joints. Therefore, Cartilage tissue and bones start to fuse, which causes framework deformity and the loss of mobility of your hands. Lack of mobility of your hand causes serious issues and hampers the quality of life.
Untreated hand arthritis also affects our significant organs such as the lung, heart, skin, and kidney.
Let’s discuss it vividly.
Effects on the lung
The Mayo Clinic Health Journal explained the lung problems associated with Rheumatoid hand arthritis. They are discussed below:
Scarring within the lungs: Arthritis causes long-term inflammation in the lungs, which is also known as interstitial lung disease, which may cause shortness of breath, fatigue, loss of appetite, chronic dry cough.
Lung nodule: Rheumatoid arthritis in hand may develop nodules in the lung, which is known as a rheumatoid nodule. It doesn’t have the risk of lung cancer. But the nodule rupture may collapse the lung.
Pleural disease: The soft membrane around the lungs known as the Pleura gets inflamed. The large diffusion causes breathing problems, painful breathing, and fever.
Small airway obstruction: The wall of the lung’s small airways can become dense due to chronic inflammation and bronchiectasis or bronchiolitis caused by hand arthritis.
Effect on the Heart
According to the American College of Rheumatology, patients who have severe hand arthritis may develop major inflammation, spreading to the blood vessels and narrowing it. This narrowness causes blockage and clots of blood arteries and makes blood vessels small. This kind of Coronary blockage increases the chance of having a stroke and heart attack. In addition, hand rheumatoid arthritis leads to pericarditis which means inflammation of the surrounded heart membrane.
Effect on the Kidney
We get science baked evidence that untreated arthritis can severely affect the kidney. Mayo Clinic reviewed this topic in their Journal “Vigilance for kidney problems key for rheumatoid arthritis patients”. Researchers have conducted a study on 813 Mayo Clinic Patients having rheumatoid arthritis, and 813 don’t have RA. They found that patients with rheumatoid arthritis have a 25% increased risk of developing chronic kidney disease than the general population, which shows the risk factor is only 20%. Thus, physicians advised rheumatoid arthritis patients to perform kidney function tests periodically. They should keep their blood pressure under control, avoid high-salt food and medications that damage the kidney.
Effects on the skin
As arthritis especially, Rheumatoid arthritis is an auto-immune disease, it intends to attack the outer lining of the joints, which can deteriorate your skin condition. Rashes are redness are the common skin condition that comes with untreated rheumatoid arthritis. Apart from that, procrastination of hand arthritis causes blisters and nodules in your hand joints.
The Journal of Rheumatology said that patients with rheumatoid arthritis at hand and knee joints might cause radiographic damage. But appropriate treatment capable of preventing radiographic progression.
How Squegg helps arthritis patients in their recovery journey?
Our primary goal is to manage your hand arthritis at the initial stage.Managing your arthritis at the initial stage prevents structural joint damage of your hand and maintains the range of motion. We provide consistent handgrip training exercises to our patients, increasing hand and finger flexibility. With our ergonomic hand grip trainer, the patient can track their progress, increasing patient engagement and compliances. With Squegg arthritis patients can monitor different grip improvements. Hand therapists use our ergonomic Squegg grip strengthening equipment to measure the hand and finger strength of their arthritis patients.,