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Misdiagnosing arthritis

Many Pennsylvania residents suffer from arthritis. Osteoarthritis and psoriatic arthritis are both diseases that affect the joints and have many other similarities, which often makes it difficult to tell the difference between them. Osteoarthritis wears away the cartilage and worsens as the sufferer ages. Psoriatic arthritis affects the joints as well as the skin and often results in patches of red rashes with scaled texture. Both conditions can result in inflammation, but osteoarthritis is not effectively treated with anti-inflammatory drugs alone.

As osteoarthritis progresses, the joints rub together, causing a painful sensation. Osteoarthritis especially affects the spine, hips, hands and knees. Psoriasis associated with psoriatic arthritis tends to appear on the elbows, knees, navel and genital areas. Psoriatic arthritis tends to manifest in pain affecting the hands and feet, often leading to deformities. The arthritis targets tendons and ligaments where the joint is attached to the bone, resulting in painful swelling.

Psoriatic arthritis is strongly associated with stiffness in the joints, while osteoarthritis often causes tenderness. Psoriatic patches may appear near the affected joint in cases of psoriatic arthritis, while osteoarthritis sufferers experience reduced mobility in the affected area. Psoriatic arthritis pain tends to be warm, while osteoarthritic pain is often grating and accompanied by unusual growths in the area of the afflicted joint.

In some cases, the failure to diagnose the correct form of arthritis can lead to increased suffering. Both conditions are best identified and treated early, so a failure to make a diagnosis can lead to valuable time lost in which the patient could have been experiencing relief. Those who have been harmed as a result of such a mistake might want to meet with a medical malpractice attorney to explore the options that they have for seeking compensation.

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