Inflammation: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment

Medically Reviewed by Dr. Hasan Feroz, M.D.,

Overview

Inflammation is a very common term generally everyone listens about the inflammation in our day to day life. Inflammation is the process where our body immune system response to protect the external invasions like infections, disease, injuries.

There are many types of inflammation that can be felt and could not be felt. suppose you got an injury in your ankle you will feel the pain and swelling while if you have swelling in your internal organ or tissues you will not be able to diagnose it as inflammation until the disease reaches its maximum level.

Sometimes your immune system attacks itself and causes inflammation like rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease.

Types of Inflammation

There are two types of inflammation that is Acute inflammation and chronic inflammation. acute inflammation occurs sudden and for a short period of time and resolved to own itself within few days while chronic inflammation is the condition where the inflammation is not as severe as in acute inflammation and may last for six weeks and above. Chronic inflammation occurs with the disease that lasts for a long time like cancer, heart disease, diabetes and arthritis.

Symptoms of Inflammation

There are 5 common signs of inflammation:

Redness

Swelling

Pain

Heat

Loss of Function

These are the five symptoms of inflammation but if someone has continuous inflammation in any part of the body which refers to chronic pain may face the symptoms like:

Body aches

Fever

Frequent infections

Depression

Muscle Stiffness

Chills

Inflammation Causes

Due to inflammation, our body releases the white cells into the blood to protect tissues in the body from external invaders like infections, pathogens. This condition leads to more blood flow to the inflammation site or site of injury which resulted in redness and warmth. There are some factors that may causes inflammation:

Acute and Chronic condition

Medications

Infections

Diagnosis of Inflammation

If you have inflammation in your external part of the body like in ankles, cuts and injuries your doctor will easily diagnose it by physical examination and in X-ray. If you have swelling in the internal part of the body like swelling in liver,heart,tissues, intestine like part your doctor may prescribe blood tests which are as follows:

C-Reactive Protein

Known as CRP is the test that identify inflammation. It is naturally produced in the liver when inflation occurs its quantity increases in the blood resulted in increased CRP which can be interpreted with a high level of inflammation.

Serum Protein Electrophoresis (SPE)

This test diagnoses chronic inflammation. It measures a certain level of proteins found in the blood to measure inflammation.

Erythrocite Sedimentation Rate (ESR)

This test is not very reliable to measure inflammation so the doctor does not rely on this test. There is a tube where the blood is poured and how much time the blood sinks in the tube. The quicker they sink related to higher the inflammation. This test only tells that there is inflammation occurring.

Treatment of Inflammation

There are various options available to treat the inflammation. If the inflammation is not caused by any auto-immune disease or infection your doctor may recommend you some NSAID medicines which are as follows:

Ibuprofen

Naproxen

Mefenamic acid

Aceclofenac

To treat patient efficiently your doctor may prescribe you corticosteroids which are known as the best medicines to reduce inflammation and swelling. these are

Methylprednisone

Betamethasone

Prednisolone

Dexamethasone

There are multiple topical creams are available which can be used to reduce the inflammation of joints and bones. It can be used only on external parts of the body. These topical creams include diclofenac sodium, methyl salicylate etc.

Foods That increases the Inflammation

There are some foods that may cause inflammation in the body so avoiding these foods is the best option to reduce the inflammation threat.

Marigold

Carbohydrates refined

Alcohol

Processed foods

Trans fat

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