Rheumatic Disorders

Rheumatic Disorders

“Rheumatism” is a collective term for diseases that affect particularly the

joints and ligaments of the limbs, the spinal column, tendons, connective tissue,

and muscle, but also the internal organs. A typical example is acute rheumatic

fever, which can lead not only to polyarthritis, but also to heart or kidney

disease.

Rheumatic Disorders


Rheumatic diseases are today categorized in the following groups:

• Inflammatory rheumatism:

– Acute rheumatoid arthritis (rheumatic fever).

– Chronic rheumatoid arthritis (articular rheumatism).

– Bechterew disease (ankylosing spondylitis).

• Degenerative, non-inflammatory rheumatism:

– Arthrosis.

– Spondylosis and osteochondrosis.

• Soft tissue rheumatism:

– This includes partly inflammatory, partly degenerative processes that

affect not the joints but the muscles, connective tissue, synovial bursa,

tendon sheaths, and nerves.

Rheumatology distinguishes between two different types of pain, namely

mechanical pain and inflammatory pain.

Mechanical pain generally appears during or after physical exertion,

abates during rest, and completely disappears overnight. If stiffness does occur

in the morning, it is very short and lasts a few minutes at most.

In contrast, inflammatory pain occurs also when the patient is resting.

Generally, it flares up during the second half of the night and in some cases

becomes so severe toward the morning that it awakens the patient. Inflammatory

pain tends to be accompanied by ankylosis. This early-morning stiffness

is persistent and painful, possibly lasting for more than half an hour. In

contrast, ankylosis in conjunction with arthrosis generally lasts only a few

minutes.


Acute Rheumatic Fever

Acute rheumatoid arthritis refers to a hypersensitive reaction (allergy) to

pathogens, most commonly streptococcus bacteria. This condition manifests

in sudden fever of up to 40°C (104 °F) in conjunction with very painful redness

and swelling in the joints; the large and medium-sized joints (joints of

the knees, feet, shoulders, elbows, and hands) are particularly affected.

A typical characteristic of this disease is that it wanders, from one joint to

another. Also typical is profuse sweating. The sweat has a characteristic sour

odor.

Shortly before the onset of acute rheumatoid arthritis, the patient often

suffers from tonsillitis or catarrh of the nose, throat, and bronchial tubes.

This disease most frequently affects children and young adults, but especially

school children.

Treatment

Because of the severity of the disease and the danger of secondary developments,

especially of rheumatic carditis, hospitalization is often necessary.

Inflammatory Chronic Rheumatoid Arthritis

(Articular Rheumatism)

Chronic rheumatoid arthritis is also inflammatory, but not caused by pathogens.

The cause is unknown. Because the chronic inflammation is self-perpetuating

and hence does not heal, autoimmune processes have been suspected

as formative. The disease can occur in all ages, but predominantly between

the ages of 25 and 50, and affects women at three times the rate as men.

Symptoms

• As a rule, latent disease onset with joint problems that are at first undefined,

such as stiffness in the finger and hand joints, especially in the morning

after waking.

• Later, pain and swelling develops in the joints. The small joints on the

hands and feet are involved first.

• In more advanced stages of the disease, the larger joints and parts of the

cervical spinal column are also affected. Sooner or later, deformities develop

in the hands and feet.

• Deterioration of general health, such as fatigue, exhaustion, lack of appetite,

weight loss, abnormal sweating and mild anemia, sometimes slightly

elevated body temperature.

Degenerative Rheumatoid Arthritis (Arthrosis)

Arthrosis is not an inflammatory disorder, but a degenerative joint disease

that affects primarily the joint cartilage. The cause of arthrosis is a disproportion

between the load and load-bearing capacity of the joint surfaces. In this

process, the following factors play a role amongst others: congenital or injury-

related malposition of the joints, congenital weakness of the cartilage

tissue, previous joint inflammations, hormonal influences, excessive weight

or strain. The disease is relatively widespread. It occurs mostly after the age

of 40 and is slightly more common in women than in men.

In principle, it can affect any joint, but is most common in the load-bearing

joints such as the knee, hip, and foot joints, and the small joints of the

lumbar spinal column, followed by the shoulder, elbow, and hand joints.

Symptoms

• The first indications of arthrosis are stiffness and a feeling of tension after

longer rest periods.

• Pain in arthrosis is predominantly mechanical. Pain during starting or

warm-up that decreases with further movement is typical. Continuous

strain, however, induces repeated pain.

• As the clinical picture of arthrosis progresses, bony enlargements may

form in the joints, and you may here grinding or crackling noises. The motility

of the joints is limited due to pain.

• Continuous sparing of the joint increases the danger of articular stiffness

due to limited movement.

• Furthermore, lack of movement leads to poor circulation in the joint capsule

and therefore to additional impaired nutrition in the already damaged

cartilage.

Treatment of Rheumatic Disorders

Suggested Therapy

The treatment of rheumatic disorders with cupping pursues

two goals:

• Eliminating the inflammatory symptoms and pain.

• Influencingmetabolism, to slow down the decline in degenerative diseases

and finally reach stabilization.

By stimulating circulation, cupping loosens the connective tissue, releases

tension, and accelerates metabolism. It also relieves the manifestations of inflammation,

and therefore the pain. Even serious changes are accessible to

treatment, in spite of the fact that improvement can often be reached only

very slowly.

• Treatment must be repeated for a longer period of time in intervals of

initially 2–4 days, and afterwards of 8–14 days, until the goal is

reached.

• Rubbing ointment on the treated skin areas prior to cupping increases

the effect.

Supplemental Therapy

• Homeopathy. For the rheumatic class of disorders, homeopathy offers

good options for treatment. Nevertheless, a successful homeopathic treatment

requires patience from both the therapist and the patient. Remedies

must be selected strictly according to individual symptoms.

Alternating Therapy

• Neural therapy. Quaddle therapy with local anesthetics above painful

joints.

• Physical therapy. Depending on tolerance: heat or cold applications.

Acupuncture. Causal therapy.

Suggested Therapy

In this case, success can be attained already after the first treatment. If not,

repeat treatment in intervals of 4 days, until complete absence of complaints

is reached.

Supplemental Therapy

• Homeopathy. Acute lumbago should, with rare exceptions, offer the

chance of a “miracle treatment” for the homeopathic therapist. In acute

cases, the pain generally subsides quickly after taking organotropic homeopathic

remedies. In chronic cases, success depends on the severity of

the disease and on the degree of pre-existing spinal column deformations.

The number of possible remedies is quite large.

Neural therapy

 Depending on the case, quaddle therapy with local anesthetics.

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