Reactive Arthritis Demystified: Insights into Reiter's Syndrome
Reiter's Syndrome which is also known as Reactive arthritis, is a form of arthritis that is an inflammatory condition of joints, which occurs due to other associated pathologies of the body. It causes pain and swelling in the joints, and as the name reactive arthritis says - it's triggered by an infection in another part of the body. Infections in the gastrointestinal tract or in the urinary tract can also result in reactive arthritis or reiter's syndrome after weeks. However sometimes a triad of diseases arthritis, urethritis and conjunctivitis can result in reactive arthritis. Ayurveda has a vast variety of management of Reactive Arthritis. It says this disease is due to vitiation of vata dosha (one among the three doshas).
Reiter's Syndrome is a type of joint pain and swelling that is triggered by an infection in some other part of the body - most often the site can be the genitals, intestine or urinary tract. It is an autoimmune disorder that causes joint pain and swelling which is caused by a causative organism as mentioned above. Reactive arthritis or Reiter's syndrome is not a common disease. Usually the signs and symptoms come on and off and eventually disappear within 12 months. This disease isn't contagious and it affects men more than females. Reactive arthritis occurs most frequently in adults between 20-40 years of age.
- The infections that are the cause of reactive arthritis are spread through sexual contact which causes infection in the urinary bladder, urethra, in the penis or the vagina.
- Gastrointestinal infection (Salmonella or E.coli) can also be a cause of this disease, that usually comes in contact by consuming contaminated food.
Signs And Symptoms
- Inflammation and pain in joints like Knees, Feet or Ankles.
- Bony growth in the heel
- Red, painful & irritated eyes
- Blurry vision
- Conjunctivitis (Inflammation of conjunctiva).
- Urethritis (inflammation of urethra)
- Mouth sores & ulcers
- Pain and stiffness of joints
- Rashes on palms and sores
- Low back ache
- Swollen toes or fingers
- Some signs in men include - Increased urine output, burning sensation during micturition, discharge from penis, inflamed prostate gland, sores in glans penis.
- Signs in women include - Inflamed cervix, Urethra, Vulva or vagina associated with pain during micturition.
There's no specific test to rule out reactive arthritis, hence diagnosis of this disease can be a bit difficult. However certain test like
- Physical examination
- ESR (Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate) - The faster the blood cells fall, the more severe the inflammation.
- X Ray to look for swelling or damage caused to the joint.
- Urine and stool samples to look for bacteria or signs of disease.
- Gene testing - check for HLA-B27 maker.
- Joint aspiration - A small sample of synovial fluid is taken and tested for crystals, bacteria or viruses.
Treatment Of Reactive Arthritis
Treatment of Reactive arthritis will depend upon symptoms, age and general health of the patient. Few points include.
- Antibiotics for treatment of the infection.
- Corticosteroids and anti-inflammatory medicines to reduce inflammation.
- Immunosuppressive medicines should also be introduced.
- Proper rest should be given to the patient to ease pain and inflammation.
- After the symptoms subsides exercise should be done to strengthen muscle and improve joint function.
Ayurvedic Aspect Of Reactive Arthritis
In Ayurveda, Reactive arthritis or Reiter's Arthritis can be correlated to be a type of Amavata. Amavata can be considered as inflammation and pain in the joint due to vitiation of vata dosha that eventually slows the process of digestion which causes the ama (undigested food) to block the channels that supply nutrition to the body.
Acharya Charaka says that this particular disease (Reactive Arthritis) is caused due to imbalance in vata dosha due to some external factors. As vata dosha is responsible for the mobility of other two doshas (Pitta and Kapha), its vitiation causes imbalance in the body functions and leads to various pathologies.
Herbal Remedies For Reactive Arthritis By Planet Ayurveda
Planet Ayurveda is a US FDA-registered company that is GMP - certified too. This company formulates various remedies as mentioned by the Acharyas in the ancient Ayurvedic Texts. In Planet Ayurveda, formulations of herbal remedies are free from any adulterants or any kind of preservatives. All herbal medications by Planet Ayurveda are formulated by the experts of Ayurveda. For reactive arthritis, Planet ayurveda provides various supplements that cause no ill effects and shows great results. Following are the list of products useful for Reactive Arthritis or Reilter's Syndrome.
- Boswellia Curcumin
- Amalaki Rasayan
- Yogaraj Guggul
- Aamvatantak Churna
- Ashwagandha Ghan Vati
- Orthovita Oil
1. Boswellia Curcumin
Boswellia curcumin in the form of a capsule is formulated by Planet Ayurveda by using two most effective drugs for betterment of joints and bones, Shallaki (Boswellia serrata) and Curcumin (Curcuma longa). The combination of these two drugs helps reduce pain and inflammation of joints and also helps in maintenance of full health without any adverse effect.
Dosage - 2 capsules twice a day with warm water, after meals.
2. Amalaki Rasayan
Amalaki Rasayana by Planet Ayurveda is prepared using Amalaki/Amla, which is considered to be the richest source of vitamin C. It works on all three doshas, specifically it works on Pitta dosha i.e warmest of all the dosha and is responsible for burning micturition. So by working on pitta dosha amalaki rasayana in the form of capsules, balances the doshas and gives relief for burning micturition and also treats mouth ulcers and sores. It also reduces the pain and swelling of joints. Acharya Sushruta considered Amalaki Chakshuya (good for eyes) means this drug also helps in curing conjunctiva. Rasayan medicines rejuvenate the body and skin and prevent inflammation in joints.
Dosage - 1-2 Capsules twice daily, with plain water, after meals.
3. Yogaraj Guggul
This drug is prepared by Planet Ayurveda by using herbs like Guggul (Commiphora mukul), Kulanjan (Alpinia galanga) and many other effective drugs. These herbs in the form of tablets help to support the health of all body organs in general. Yograj Guggul is known to support and maintain the vata dosha. This preparation is free from chemicals & any kind of preservatives.
Dosage - 1-2 Tablets twice or thrice a day with lukewarm water.
4. Aamvatantak Churna
Aamvatantak Churna by Planet Ayurveda is made up of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), Methi (Trigonela foenum graecum), Haridra (Curcuma longa) and many more. These combinations of herbs in the form of churna are known to reduce inflammation, tenderness of joints and also works as an immune booster for the body.
Dosage - 1/2 to 1 teaspoonful twice daily, after meals with plain water or Aloe vera juice or Kumari Saar
5. Ashwagandha Ghan Vati
The key ingredient of ashwagandha ghan vati is pure extract of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), it is known to act as a pain reliever and also has anti inflammatory properties. These capsules by Planet Ayurveda offer great results in joint pain relief, it's purely herbal and devoid of any kind of chemicals.
Dosage - 1-2 tablets twice or thrice daily with lukewarm water
6. Orthovita Oil
This oil by Planet Ayurveda has the goodness of saindhavi oil, shul gajendra oil, camphor and many more other ayurvedic oils. Application of this oil to the area of pain helps in relief. Ayurveda considers Snehana (process of oiling) to be an effective treatment in case of this disease.
Dosage - Apply over the affected area and gently once or twice daily.
Hence we can conclude that Reiter's Syndrome or reactive arthritis that can be correlated to a type of Amavata in Ayurveda is a rare but severe pathological condition. This condition also is quite troublesome and painful. So proper treatment needs to be done. Ayurveda provides the most effective solution that is free of any ill effects. Planet Ayurveda thus by following all the ancient Ayurvedic scriptures formulated medications that provide relief to this condition.