Septic Artheritis (SA) is a destructive form of arthritis resulting from a bacterial infection in the joint. The patient will exhibit acute swollen, warm, and painful joints. The effusion from the joint may be scant or moderate. Pain in the affected joint is associated with active and passive movement. Often, a person will have a recent infection. It can be difficult to distinguish between SA and rheumatoid arthritis, but there are several symptoms to look out for.
A healthcare provider may conduct an arthroscopy, which involves inserting a thin metal tube into the affected joint to drain fluid. If the infection is in a deeper joint, the patient may undergo open surgery to drain the infection. In some cases, an artificial joint needs to be removed before the infection can be treated. Once the infection has cleared, the joint can be replaced. The patient may have to take antimicrobials for up to two weeks.
Septic arthritis can occur due to a variety of different causes, including bacteria, fungi, and viral bodies. Infection with bacteria is the most common cause, but can occur from an open wound or surgical procedure. Bacteria such as staphylococcus, neisseria gonorrhoeae, and streptococcus are all common causes of septic arthritis. While staph is the most common cause, other causes of septic arthritis include fungi and viral bodies.
Infected joints are more vulnerable to infection. Treatment should be targeted toward the joint’s lining, but anti-bacterial therapy should not be delayed. Treatment of septic arthritis can prevent a potentially crippling joint infection. The symptoms of SA are similar to those of rheumatoid arthritis. The most important step in treatment is early diagnosis. However, a patient may be missed if the disease is not diagnosed as early as possible.
If the infection is caused by a bacterial or fungal infection, antibiotics will help fight the bacteria. Antibiotics are given either intravenously or through the mouth. These drugs can often stop the infection within a few days or even months. Treatment for a viral infection will be more aggressive than for a septic arthritis. Treatment with IV antibiotics can improve the patient’s outlook. Although it can be difficult to diagnose, treatment can improve their quality of life.
Infections may also cause an outbreak of arthritis. Infections can enter the joint through surgery, open wounds, or puncture wounds. Once in the joint, the symptoms include intense swelling, fever, and pain. In some cases, an individual will also experience fever and chills. Infective Arthritis is more common in older adults, children, and people who use illegal drugs. So, if you notice any of these symptoms, see your doctor as soon as possible.