Pain in all joints of the body

Causes of Joint Pain

Joint problems often occur locally when a person has pain in a particular joint and can pinpoint the exact location of the pain. But sometimes joint pain cannot be localized because all or several joints are hurting at the same time. In this case, it is premature to talk about rheumatoid arthritis, since in addition to this pathology there are other diseases in which pain covers all the joints of the musculoskeletal system.

An attentive doctor who analyzes the patient's complaints and identifies cause-effect relationships can identify the reasons why all joints hurt at the same time. It is far from always that easy to determine the diagnosis, and with the most common general symptoms, it is not possible to immediately find out a particular pathology after a series of examinations. Therefore, if systemic joint pain occurs, do not delay a doctor's visit.

If all joints of the musculoskeletal system are seriously ill, this can be due to the following reasons:

  • Pathologies of autoimmune origin and systemic allergic reactions.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis.
  • osteoarthritis.
  • Chronic fatigue, increased physical activity.
  • Poisoning the body.
  • blood diseases.

If there is pain in several or all joints, one must immediately remember that such a situation is only a reaction to certain diseases, not to independent diseases. The only exceptions can be pathologies such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis when the immediate cause is damage to the cartilage itself.

Rheumatoid arthritis

The disease refers to chronic autoimmune diseases that mainly affect joints throughout the body. A distinctive feature of rheumatoid arthritis is the involvement of many joints in the pathological process.

Cytokines, metalloproteinase and chemotactic cytokines play a key role in the inflammatory process. These are anti-inflammatory elements that activate the activity of the body's immune cells. As a result, they move to the site of inflammation, that is, the joints of the human body, triggering a typical inflammatory response.

A typical manifestation of rheumatoid arthritis is damage to the peripheral joints and symmetrical. As the disease worsens, the pathology affects the larger joints. The pathology mainly affects women, in men it occurs three times less often. It is diagnosed between the ages of thirty and fifty years of age, but it can also sometimes appear in teenagers - this disease is called juvenile arthritis.

Despite the fact that scientists have clarified the immunity of the disease, it has not yet been possible to establish the exact cause of rheumatoid arthritis - why do anti-inflammatory cells acquire such pathological activity. So far, a genetic predisposition to rheumatoid arthritis has been demonstrated. It is also noted that negative factors, such as smoking, the transmission of viral diseases, etc. , affect the appearance of pathologies.

The course of the disease is based on the activation of immune complexes that are produced by the synovial membrane and are located in blood vessels. A quick response to them are rheumatoid factors - antibodies that are produced against these complexes. And in some cases, they appear on their own, in the absence of any provoking factors.

HELP!At an early stage in the development of the pathology, macrophages migrate to the affected areas, after a while the number of lymphocytes there increases. The release of inflammatory mediators and provokes the development of the pathological process throughout the body.

When a chronic lesion of the synovia appears, instead of its usual thickness, it becomes denser and coarser, grows and folds in the form of villi on its surface. The cells of the synovial fluid produce stromelysin and collagenase, which promotes destructive processes in cartilage tissue. The inflammatory process is aggravated by the production of prostaglandins, fibrin deposits and necrotic processes appear.

Overgrown synovial tissue provokes inflammatory mediators, which contribute to the destruction not only of the cartilage, but also of the bone tissue, the ligaments and the joint capsule. The number of leukocytes in the synovial fluid itself increases.

Small joints of the body become covered with characteristic rheumatoid nodules when the shape of the joint changes and its appearance becomes ugly. The content of such rheumatoid nodules is the necrotic part of macrophages, fibroblasts, and plasma cells. Similar nodules are found in internal organs.

The disease progresses gradually. Patients suffer from general and local joint manifestations - there is a characteristic stiffness in the joints in the morning, fatigue is observed, appetite is lost, body temperature rises to subfebrile. The condition of the joints will be much better about an hour after you wake up. The joints are affected symmetrically and rheumatoid arthritis usually affects the following joints:

  • wrist.
  • Second and third metacarpophalangeal.
  • shoulder.
  • knees.
  • ankle.
  • hip.
  • elbows.

The disease actually threatens every joint in the musculoskeletal system. The distal phalangeal joints and elements of the axial skeleton are least affected.

rheumatoid arthritis as a cause of joint pain

The joints remain sore, they swell and redden and feel hot. To minimize painful sensations, patients try to keep their joints flexed - this way they hurt less. The progression of the disease occurs in the first 5 to 6 years after the onset of the first pathological changes. And already ten years after the development of the pathology, irreversible changes appear in patients.

During this time, patients develop significant joint deformities and instability can occur. When the nerve branches are compressed, patients have carpal tunnel syndrome, and with rheumatoid arthritis of the knee joint, patients with Baker's cyst, deep vein thrombosis, etc. are at risk.

In parallel with changes in the joints, extra-articular manifestations of the body are observed, which develop in every third patient with the progression of pathology. Examples of such manifestations can be rheumatoid lung nodules, vasculitis, Felty's syndrome, and myocarditis.

Diagnosing the disease is not that difficult. The blood shows typical clinical criteria for rheumatoid arthritis, an increased erythrocyte sedimentation rate, a significant amount of C-reactive protein and rheumatoid factor.

The patient's health is shown on an X-ray that is taken when rheumatoid arthritis is suspected. The disease is different from osteoarthritis, sarcoid, psoriatic arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis, arthritis that developed against the background of hepatitis C.

IMPORTANT!The diagnosis must take into account that the disease has a fairly high fatal outcome. However, in rheumatoid arthritis, it is not associated with joint damage, but with pathological changes in the heart and internal bleeding.

The disease is treated with supportive therapy and strong NSAIDs. It is recommended to only adequately load the joints and add exercise therapy. If necessary, surgery is performed.


Osteoarthritis is another common pathology that can affect both large and small joints. Various factors can cause osteoarthritis, which primarily has a negative effect on the cartilage tissue of the joint. Cartilage throughout the human body fulfills several functions and primarily acts as a shock absorber during various movements. Constant stress leads to increased wear and tear of the cartilage.

If people with good health and strong immunity have the opportunity to restore damaged tissues, then in the elderly, as well as in those with increased stress on the joint, almost no synthesis of new fibers occurs, and the cartilage tissue is not restored. Traditionally, osteoarthritis has been viewed as a result of mechanical effects on tissues, but now doctors are looking at previously transmitted inflammatory diseases as factors in the development of systemic osteoarthritis.

A typical symptom of the disease is pain in all joints, as the matrix is ​​losing extremely important substances - glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate. The lack of these elements leads to the so-called dislocation of the joint, that is, cracks of different depths appear in the cartilage tissue.

Inflammatory processes can also disrupt the normal structure of the cartilage tissue. When doctors localize in the subchondral part of the bone, doctors often diagnose microfractures in patients. The edges of the bone in the joint are covered with growths - osteophytes. They serve to compensate for the worn out part of the cartilage, but in fact they bring even more negative sensations to the patient.

Osteoarthritis as a cause of joint pain

Menopausal women are most susceptible to osteoarthritis.

Since the real cause of osteoarthritis is not clear, doctors identify several factors that contribute to the development of the disease:

  • Congenital insufficiency of the cartilage tissue, in which it is very easy to injure. For example, patients with such a pathology develop flat feet, and dislocations are often diagnosed - complete and incomplete.
  • Gender is also one of the factors in the development of the disease, since according to statistics, osteoarthritis is twice as common in women as it is in men.
  • Age feature - the disease usually develops in patients over 45 years of age, in women it coincides with menopause.
  • obesity.
  • metabolic problems.
  • Increased athletic stress on the joints.
  • Traumatic joint injuries.

The disease develops in every joint, but usually the starting joint is the one with the most physical activity. It can be localized in the knee joints, hip, elbow, etc.

The symptoms of the disease are very obvious, so that osteoarthritis cannot be overlooked. In a person with increased stress, the joints begin to hurt immediately, while the severity of the discomfort can vary: from a slight wail in the joint to the most severe sharp pain in the joint. The pain increases with movement and becomes less pronounced at rest.

In parallel with pain, patients suffer from cracks in the joints, the appearance of stiffness. Patients have restricted movement. Especially at the moments of the progression of the disease, when reflex muscle spasms are added to the pathology.

At a later stage in the development of the disease, patients develop a characteristic joint blockage - this is a sharp pain when the joint suddenly stops moving due to the appearance of severe joint pain. This is due to the penetration of cartilage tissue fragments into the cavity, which blocks movement. If the disease is accompanied by inflammation, then swelling of the synovial membrane occurs, which is easily visible.

The development of osteoarthritis is very individual. In some patients, the X-ray shows signs of the progression of the pathology, but depending on the sensations, the picture of the disease does not change. At the same time, other patients experience severe pain, inflammation and restricted mobility if the joint itself looks satisfactory in the picture, depending on the stage of development of the pathology.

Diagnosis of the disease is based on X-ray data and clinical signs of the disease. In parallel, you can do an ultrasound or magnetic resonance imaging if it is necessary to assess the presence of complications.

Doctors try to treat the disease taking into account the maximum preservation of mobility in the joint and the patient's ability to work professionally. Therefore, in therapy, it is extremely important to stop the progression of the disease, eliminate joint pain and relieve inflammation.

At this time, the options for treating osteoarthritis are not unlimited and treatment tactics are difficult to see as successful due to the inability to restore the joints. The disease enters a chronic stage and you have to constantly fight it.

TIP!Even so, such unfortunate prognoses do not condemn patients to disability - with successful therapy you can learn to live with osteoarthritis and even maintain physical activity.

Doctors use the following groups of agents for treatment:

  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
  • glucocorticosteroids.
  • chondroprotectors.
  • Means for activating blood circulation.
  • muscle relaxants.

The disease therapy consists mainly of drugs that restore the cartilage tissue to the maximum and can restore metabolic processes in the joint. Therefore, the focus is on chondroprotectors, the use of which begins immediately after the inflammation is eliminated. Treatment with chondroprotectors is long-term and the best result only appears with timely treatment.

Other diseases

Rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis are the most common conditions that cause joints to ache and ache throughout the body. However, in addition to the leading representatives of morbidity, there are other diseases that provoke pain in the joint joints.

What diseases cause joint pain

Joint pain can be a manifestation of leukemia.

Joint pain can be a manifestation of blood disorders. Today, hematological pathologies are the most difficult not only in diagnosis for the treating physicians, but also in therapy. Often they are linked to an oncological factor, and diseases take on a completely different meaning for the patient. Usually, joints all over the body with leukemia ache - acute and chronic. At the same time, the patients do not even suspect what this means, since the results of the blood test do not show any abnormalities.

Arthralgia is not isolated, it not only affects joint elements, but also bones and muscles. Therefore, doctors advise patients with long-term pain sensations. It is imperative to consult not only with an orthopedic traumatologist or surgeon, but also with a hematologist who may suspect a pathology and send the patient for further examination.

Poisoning the body is another cause of joint pain. The fact is that the joints react extremely sharply to the absorption of toxins in the body. If they start to hurt and twist the joints, it may be caused by the influence of occupational hazards, household waste poisoning, tobacco smoking, and alcoholism. Patients suffer from extremely unpleasant symptoms - all joints hurt, as if the general condition of the body is suffering from the flu.

An improvement in the health of the patient is possible after the diagnosis. Detoxification therapy is carried out, the blood is purified and consequently the synovial fluid is freed of toxins.

Most important

Pain in all joints in the body is not always associated with the pathology of the joints themselves. When the joints in the body are affected, rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis is usually the cause. Symptoms quickly increase, and the pathological process in the joints progresses.

In other cases where joint pain is not associated with damage to the joints, discomfort can be a manifestation of systemic diseases, e. g. B. blood leukemia as well as osteoporosis, body poisoning and infection. Dealing with disease is not that simple, but it is much more difficult to diagnose the disease. Patients with joint pain should contact the clinic in good time to start treatment early.