The Differences Between Arthritis and Osteoarthritis: A Complete and Updated Guide

20 de June de 2024

Arthritis and osteoarthritis are diseases that affect the joints, but have key differences in their causes, symptoms and treatments. This article will help you better understand these conditions so that you can identify their signs and seek appropriate treatment.

What is arthritis?

Arthritis is an inflammation of the joints that can be caused by various factors, such as infections, autoimmune diseases and injuries. The most common types of arthritis include rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis and infectious arthritis.


  • Joint pain and stiffness
  • Swelling and redness
  • Loss of function in affected joints


Treatment of arthritis may include anti-inflammatory drugs, immunosuppressants, physical therapy and, in severe cases, surgery.

What is osteoarthritis?


Osteoarthritis, also known as osteoarthritis, is a degenerative disease that affects the articular cartilage. It is common in older people and is the result of natural wear and tear of the joints over time.


  • Pain when moving the joint
  • Stiffness after periods of inactivity
  • Clicking or crackling when moving the joint
  • Mild swelling


Treatment of osteoarthritis focuses on relieving symptoms and improving joint function. It includes analgesics, anti-inflammatory drugs, physiotherapy, and in some cases, hyaluronic acid or platelet-rich plasma infiltrations.

Key Differences

Feature Arthritis Arthrosis
Cause Inflammatory (autoimmune, infections) Degenerative (wear and tear)
Age of onset Any age Mostly in elderly people
Progression Variable, often fast Progressive, slow
Treatment Medications, physiotherapy, surgery Analgesics, physiotherapy, infiltrations, etc.

Prevention and Lifestyle

Maintaining a healthy weight, exercising regularly and avoiding injuries can help prevent both arthritis and osteoarthritis. A balanced diet rich in anti-inflammatory nutrients may also be beneficial.


Understanding the differences between arthritis and osteoarthritis is crucial to receive the right treatment and improve quality of life. Consult a specialist in rheumatology or traumatology if you experience persistent joint symptoms.


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