What Are The Reasons For Chronic Inflammation in Legs?

By Patricia | June 23, 2009

Chronic inflammation is the result of an acute inflammation having existed for too long a period and the situation is such that it requires corticosteroid use. Acute inflammations are inflammations that occur immediately and disappear as soon as the purpose of the inflammation has been completed – this is the situation that occurs with most wounds or infections. Chronic inflammations on the other hand have taken time to progress and this has altered the state of the surrounding tissue and vascular system – this is seen in diseases like arthritis.

The question that needs to be answered is what is the reason for this kind of inflammation? Usually in the load bearing joints and in the legs especially, the reason for chronic inflammation is typically an arthritic joint or a case of gout. Both of these affect the joints. If the inflammation is seen on the skin with red spots and is accompanied by pain and swelling, then you probably have a case of cellulitis. If it is as case of cellulitis, then you must get this treated immediately or you will end up having necrosis – a state in which tissues die while they are on the body. Arthritis is a disease that occurs as the ligaments of the joints lose their protein structures and cause inefficient movement of the joints. When this occurs, the joints start grinding against each other and wearing out. This causes an inflammatory response and this is followed by pain and swelling.

Arthritis has to be treated using corticosteroids – a drug that suppresses the inflammatory response – and painkillers. Exercise and reducing the load on joints through weight loss are the only ways to manage the disease. Sometimes even joint replacement is required. Gout is a problem that is caused by excessive uric acid build up in the body. This is caused by an excessive protein intake that causes uric acid crystals to form in the load bearing joints like the knees and ankles. The crystals of uric acid then damage tissue in the surrounding area and an inflammatory response is initiated. If gout is not properly managed, then the crystals form over the joints and cause an arthritic joint. Unlike arthritis though, gout is a condition that can be nearly completely cured by reducing the amount of protein taken in by the body by controlling the diet. The use of hot and cold compresses too can help to decrease inflammation and pain.

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