Causes of spinal arthritis vary widely from person to person. To understand the causes of spine arthritis, it is first important to know that there are many types of arthritis that may affect the spine. The most common are rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disease of connective tissue. It affects synovial lining, the thin membrane that covers inside of joint capsules and articular cartilage. RA causes white blood cells to turn against this membrane. This causes inflammation and destruction of the joint surfaces. This misdirected immune response also can lead to whole-body fatigue and fevers.
The exact cause of RA is unknown. Some researchers believe viral or bacterial infections may trigger its onset. Some genetic markers (genes) are known to be associated with RA. RA usually appears during middle age and is more common in women than men.
The most common type of spinal arthritis is osteoarthritis. It is a degenerative disease most often associated with aging and traumatic injury. Many cases of osteoarthritis have no known cause, however risk factors include:
- Age – osteoarthritis cases usually appear around age 45
- Gender – women are twice as likely to develop osteoarthritis
- Injury – osteoarthritis can result from injuries sustained from accidents and sports or work-related injuries
- Heredity – it is possible to inherit joint deformity and defective cartilage
- Obesity – excessive weight causes stress to the joints
Both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis cause pain, tenderness, swelling and stiffness of the joints. The negative impact upon lifestyle may be very significant. Traditional forms of treatment are non-surgical. Treatment failures may be related to bone spurring which frequently accompanies all types of spinal arthritis. Spurs can be removed surgically. If conservative treatment has failed, contact Laser Spine Institute. Our minimally invasive procedures may help you regain a more active lifestyle. Visit our page on treatment for arthritis of the spine to read more about our streamlined patient experience.
Thousands of people across the nation have already reclaimed their lives with one LSI’s innovative spine procedures. We encourage you to read our patient testimonials. If you have additional questions or would like to schedule a complimentary review of your MRI or CT scan, contact us today.