During the physical exam, your doctor will check your joints for swelling, redness and warmth. Your doctor or midwife will also want to know how well you can move your joints.

Depending on the type of arthritis suspected, your doctor may suggest some of the following tests.

laboratory tests
Analysis of two different types of blood fluids can help determine the type of arthritis you have. Common fluids analyzed include blood, urine and joint fluid. To obtain a sample of joint fluid, your doctor will clean and numb the area before inserting a needle into the joint space to withdraw some of the fluid.

These types of tests can detect problems in your joint that may be causing your symptoms. Examples include the following:

X ray. By using low levels of radiation to visualize the bones, X-rays can show cartilage loss, bone damage and bone spurs. X-rays may not show early joint damage, but they are often used to track disease progression.
Computed tomography. CT scanners capture images from many different angles using X-rays and then combine this information to obtain a cross-section of the internal skeletal structure. A CT scan can show both the bones and the soft tissues around them.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). By combining radio waves with a strong magnetic field, an MRI can produce more detailed cross-sectional images of soft tissues such as cartilage, tendons and ligaments.
Ultrasound (ultrasound). This technology uses high-frequency sound waves to image soft tissue, cartilage and fluid-containing skeletal structures near joints (bursae). Ultrasound is also used to guide the position of the needle for suction and injection into the joint.

Therapeutic method
Arthritis treatment focuses on relieving symptoms and improving joint function. It may be necessary to try several different treatments or a combination of treatments before determining the one that’s best for you.

The drugs used to treat arthritis vary, depending on the type of inflammation. Commonly used medications for arthritis include:

pain killers. These medications help reduce pain, but have no effect on inflammation. An option to take over-the-counter medications includes acetaminophen (Tylenol, others).

For more severe pain, opioids may be prescribed, such as tramadol (Ultram, Conzep), oxycodone (OxyContin, Roxicodone, others) or hydrocodone (Hisingla, Zohydro ER). Opioid drugs act on the central nervous system to relieve pain. When opioid drugs are taken for a long time, it may become a habit; Which causes mental or physical dependence.

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. NSAIDs reduce both pain and inflammation. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs that can be obtained without a prescription include ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) and naproxen (Aleve). Some types of NSAIDs are only available with a prescription.

Oral NSAIDs can cause stomach irritation and may increase the risk of heart attack or stroke. NSAIDs are also available as creams or gels, which can be rubbed into the joints.

Corresponding irritants. Some creams and ointments contain menthol or capsaicin, which is the ingredient that makes cayenne pepper hot. Rubbing these products on the skin over the joint in which the pain is located may block the transmission of pain signals from the joint itself.
Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs. DMARDs, often used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, slow or stop the immune system from attacking the joints. Examples of these drugs include methotrexate (Trexal, Rasovo, others) and hydroxychloroquine (Plaquenil).
Factors modulating the biological response. BRAs are usually used in conjunction with DMARDs, which are genetically engineered drugs that target different protein molecules involved in the immune response.

There are many types of biological response modulators. Tumor necrosis factor (TNF) inhibitors are usually prescribed. Examples of these inhibitors include etanercept (Enbrel, Erelzi, Etikovo) and infliximab (Remicade, Inflectra, others).

Other drugs target other substances that play a role in inflammation, such as interleukin-1 (IL-1), interleukin-6 (IL-6), Janus kinase enzymes, and certain types of white blood cells known as B cells and T cells.

corticosteroids; This class of drugs, which includes prednisone (Prednisone Intensol, Rios) and cortisone (Cortef), reduces inflammation and suppresses the immune system. Corticosteroids can be taken orally or they can be injected directly into a painful joint.

Physical therapy can be helpful with some types of arthritis. Exercise can improve range of motion and strengthen the muscles around joints. In some cases, the use of splints and braces may be permitted.

If conservative measures don’t help, your doctor may suggest surgery, including the following:

Joint repair: In some cases, joint surfaces can be smoothed or realigned to reduce pain and improve functionality. These types of procedures can be done arthroscopically — making small incisions over the joint.
Joint replacement: In this procedure, the damaged joint is removed and replaced with an artificial joint. The hips and knees are commonly replaced joints.
Joint fusion: This procedure is often used with smaller joints such as the wrists, ankles, and fingers. During this procedure, both ends of the two bones of the joint are removed and then the two ends are fused together until they heal in one fixed unit.