Joint pain

Definition

Joint pain can affect one or more joints.

Causes

Joint pain can be caused by many types of injuries or conditions. It may be linked to arthritis, bursitis, and muscle pain. No matter what causes it, joint pain can be very bothersome. Some things that can cause joint pain are:

Signs of joint inflammation include:

Home Care

Follow your health care provider's advice for treating the cause of the pain.

For non-arthritic joint pain, both rest and exercise are important. Warm baths, massage, and stretching exercises should be used as often as possible.

Acetaminophen (Tylenol) may help the soreness feel better.

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) such as ibuprofen or naproxen may help relieve pain and swelling. Talk to your provider before giving aspirin or NSAIDs such as ibuprofen to children.

When to Contact a Medical Professional

Contact your provider if:

What to Expect at Your Office Visit

Your provider will ask you questions about your medical history and symptoms, including:

A physical exam will be done, looking for signs of joint abnormality including:

Tests that may be done include:

Treatments may include:


Review Date: 1/29/2018
Reviewed By: Gordon A. Starkebaum, MD, ABIM Board Certified in Rheumatology, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

This information should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. © 1997- 2007 A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.