Rheumatism is an umbrella term that involves conditions that cause chronic pain in the joints and connective tissue.

There are over 200 varieties of rheumatism.


As mentioned, joints, connective tissue and muscles are most often affected by rheumatism, but it is important to know that rheumatic diagnoses can also affect the skin, lungs, mucous membranes and other organs. - it depends on what kind of rheumatic diagnosis it is. Feel free to contact us on our Facebook page if you have input or comments.


Affected? Join the Facebook group «Rheumatism - Norway: Research and news»For the latest updates on research and media writing about this disorder. Here, members can also get help and support - at all times of the day - through the exchange of their own experiences and advice.


Bonus: At the bottom of the article you will find a training video with exercises adapted for those with soft tissue rheumatism.

Different types of rheumatism?

Previously, before research and recent knowledge have given us better insight into what rheumatism really means, rheumatism was almost generalized and 'brought under a comb' - but now you know that it is important to find out what kind of rheumatism it is about, so that you can get optimal treatment and help.


We usually distinguish between non-autoimmune and autoimmune rheumatic diagnoses. The fact that a rheumatic diagnosis is autoimmune means that the body's own immune system attacks its own cells. An example of this is Sjögren's disease, where white blood cells attack the lacrimal glands and salivary glands, which in turn leads to dry eyes and dry mouth.


Autoimmune Rheumatic Disorders?

As mentioned, rheumatic disorders can also be autoimmune. Some of the most common forms of autoimmune rheumatic disorders are systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis (arthritis), juvenile arthritis, Sjögren's syndrome, scleroderma, polymyositis, dermatomyositis, Behcets disease, Reiter's syndrome and psoriatic arthritis.


The 7 best known forms of rheumatism

It is true that some forms of rheumatic disorders are more well-known and widespread in the Norwegian population - both in terms of general level of knowledge, but also to the extent that people are affected. Perhaps the most well-known diagnoses are rheumatoid arthritis (arthritis), Ankylosing spondylite (formerly known as Bechterews), Fibromyalgia (Bløtvevsrevmatisme) Osteoarthrtitis (Osteoarthritis), gout, lupus og Sjögren's disease.


Osteoarthritis of the knee

- Here we see an example of Osteoarthrtitis in the knee. Osteoarthritis mainly affects weight bearing joints.


General symptoms of rheumatism

  1. Pain or pain - usually seen in or near one or more joints
  2. Pain when moving the affected area
  3. Pressure relief by touch or palpation
  4. Stiffness and reduced mobility - especially after periods of sitting still
  5. Symptom relief by light exercise / activity, but worsening by hard exercise
  6. Aggravated symptoms of weather changes. Especially when lowering the barometric air pressure (against low pressure) and increased humidity
  7. Relief when heating the affected area. Eg. by a hot bath.

We note that not all rheumatic disorders have these symptoms, and that many rheumatic diagnoses also have their own, more specific symptoms. However, it is common for people with rheumatism to report at least four of the seven symptoms mentioned above. The typical described pain of rheumatism is 'deep, aching pain'.


Other symptoms that may occur include:

Anemia (Low blood percentage)

movement Difficulties (Walking and general movement can be difficult and painful)

Diarrhea (Often associated with intestinal inflammation)

Bad condition (Often a secondary effect due to lack of movement / exercise)

Bad sleep (Reduced sleep quality and awakening is a fairly common symptom)

Poor dental health and gum problems

Changes in blood pressure

Fever (Inflammation and inflammation can cause fever)



High CRP (Indication of infection or inflammation)

High pulse

Cold hands

Jaw Pain


Low metabolism (eg in combination with Hashimoto's thyroiditis)

stomach Problems (Inflammation processes can contribute to stomach problems and abdominal pain)

Less flexibility (Less mobility in joints and muscles)

period cramps (Arthritis and arthritis may be affected by hormonal factors)

Dry Mouth (Often associated Sjögren's disease)

morning Stiffness (Many forms of arthritis can cause stiffness in the morning)

Muscle weakness (Arthritis / arthritis can lead to muscle loss, muscle damage and decreased strength)

Neck pain and stiff neck

Overweight (Often a secondary effect due to inability to move)

Back pain

Dizziness (Dizziness can occur in a variety of forms of arthritis and joint conditions, which can be secondary to tight muscles and stiff joints)

Intestinal Problems


Exhaustion (Due to ongoing processes in the body, people with arthritis can often feel exhausted and very tired)


Weight Loss (Involuntary weight loss may occur in arthritis)

Soreness and hypersensitivity (Increased tenderness of touch that should not really be painful may occur in arthritis / arthritis)

Eye Inflammation

Taken together or alone, these symptoms can lead to a significantly reduced quality of life and functioning.



Treatment of rheumatism and arthritis

There is no direct cure for rheumatism and arthritis, but there are both symptom relief and dysfunctional measures - such as physical therapy, physiotherapy, custom chiropractic treatment, lifestyle changes, dietary advice, medical treatment, supports (eg compression gloves) and surgery / surgical intervention.


Tips: A simple and everyday change for many is the use of specially adapted compression gloves og compression socks (the links open in a new window) - these can in fact contribute to increased blood circulation to stiff fingers and sore hands, and thus help to maintain functionality in everyday life.


List of various treatment methods often used for rheumatism

- Electrical Treatment / Current Therapy (TENS)

- Electromagnetic processing

- Physical treatment and physiotherapy

- Low-dose laser treatment

- Lifestyle changes

- Chiropractic joint mobilization and chiropractic

- Dietary advice

- Cold treatment

- Medical treatment

- Operation

- Support of joints (eg rails or other forms of joint support)

- Sick leave and reste

- Heat treatment


Electrical Treatment / Current Therapy (TENS)

A large systematic review study (Cochrane, 2000) concluded that power therapy (TENS) was more effective in pain management of knee arthritis than placebo.


Electromagnetic treatment of arthritis / arthritis

Pulsed electromagnetic therapy has proven effective against arthritis pain (Ganesan et al, 2009).


Physical treatment and physiotherapy in the treatment of arthritis / arthritis

Physical treatment can have a good effect on affected joints and can also lead to increased function, as well as improved quality of life. Adapted exercise and exercise are generally recommended to maintain joint health and the person's overall health.


Low-dose laser treatment

Studies have shown that low-dose laser (also called anti-inflammatory laser) can work at reducing pain and improving function in the treatment of arthritis and osteoarthritis. The research quality is relatively good.


Lifestyle changes and arthritis

Helping to keep one's weight, exercising properly and not least eating right can be very important for the quality of one affected by arthritis.

For example, increased weight and overweight can lead to even greater stress for the affected joint, which in turn can lead to more pain and poorer function. Otherwise, those with arthritis are often advised to stop smoking tobacco products, as this is linked to poorer blood circulation and repair ability.


Manual Joint Mobilization and Chiropractic at Arthritis

Customized joint mobilization has shown that joint mobilization performed by chiropractor (or manual therapist) has a proven clinical effect:

“A meta-study (French et al, 2011) showed that manual treatment of hip osteoarthritis had a positive effect in terms of pain relief and functional improvement. The study concluded that manual therapy is more effective than exercise in the treatment of arthritis disorders. "


Dietary advice for arthritis

Given that inflammation (inflammation) is often involved in this diagnosis, it is important to focus your food intake on anti-inflammatory food and diet - and not least avoid pro-inflammatory temptations (high sugar content and low nutritional value).


Glucosamine sulfate in combination with chondroitin sulfate (Read: 'Glucosamine sulfate against wear?') has also shown an effect against moderate osteoarthritis of the knees in a larger pooled study (Clegg et al, 2006). In the list below, we have divided foods that you should eat and foods you should avoid if you have arthritis / arthritis.

blueberry Basket

Foods that fight inflammation (foods to eat):

Berries and fruits (e.g., orange, blueberries, apples, strawberries, cherries and goji berries)
Bold fish (eg salmon, mackerel, tuna and sardines)
Green vegetables (eg spinach, cabbage and broccoli)
Coffee (its anti-inflammatory effect can help fight inflammation)
Nuts (eg almonds and walnuts)
Olive oil
Omega 3

Oregano oil

To conclude a bit about foods that should be eaten, one could say that the diet should be aimed at a so-called Mediterranean diet, which has a high content of fruits, vegetables, nuts, whole grains, fish and healthy oils.

Of course, such a diet will have many other positive effects - such as more control over weight and a generally healthier everyday life with more energy.


Foods that increase inflammatory reactions (foods to avoid):

Alcohol (e.g. beer, red wine, white wine and spirits)
Processed meat (e.g. non-fresh burger meat that has gone through several such preservation processes)
Deep-fried food (french fries and the like)
Gluten (many people with arthritis react negatively to gluten)
Milk / lactose products (Many believe that milk should be avoided if you are affected by arthritis)
Refined carbohydrates (eg light bread, pastry and similar baking)
Sugar (High sugar content can promote increased inflammation / inflammation)

The aforementioned food groups are thus some of the ones that should be avoided - as these can aggravate the arthritis and arthritis symptoms.


Cold treatment and arthritis (arthritis)

On a general basis, it is recommended to treat colds in the symptoms of arthritis. This is due to the fact that cold calms down inflammatory processes in the area. However, it is worth mentioning that not everyone responds well to this.


Massage and arthritis

Massage and muscle work can have a symptom-relieving effect on tight muscles and stiff joints.


Medication and arthritis / arthritis medications

There are a number of medications and medications that are designed to treat arthritis and arthritis symptoms. The most common procedure is to start with the drugs that have the least negative side effects and then try stronger medicines if the first ones do not work properly.

The type of medication used varies depending on the type of arthritis / arthritis that the person is afflicted with. Common painkillers and medications come in pill form and as tablets - some of the most common ones used are paracet (paracetamol), ibux (ibuprofen) and opiates.

In the treatment of rheumatic arthritis, a so-called anti-rheumatic drug called Methotrexate is also used - this simply works directly against the immune system and leads to a later progression of this condition.


Arthritis / arthritis surgery

In certain forms of erosive arthritis, ie arthritis conditions that break down and destroy joints (eg rheumatic arthritis), it may be necessary to replace the joints if they become so damaged that they no longer function.

Of course, this is something you do not want and should be a last resort because of the risks of surgery and surgical procedures, but which may be extremely necessary in some cases.

For example, hip and knee prosthetic surgery is relatively common due to arthritis, but unfortunately is no guarantee that the pain will disappear. Recent studies have cast doubt on whether surgery is better than just exercise - and some studies have also shown that customized training can be better than surgical intervention.

In many cases, cortisone will be tested before going to the drastic operation.


Sick leave and arthritis

In the blossoming phase of arthritis and arthritis, sick leave and rest may be necessary - often in combination with treatment. Sickness progress will vary and it is impossible to say anything specific about how long arthritis will be sickly reported.

It is NAV that is the organizing body together with sick leave. If the condition worsens, this can cause the person to be unable to work, become disabled, and then dependent on the disability benefit / disability pension.


Heat treatment and arthritis

On a general basis, it is recommended to treat colds in the symptoms of arthritis. This is due to the fact that cold calms down inflammatory processes in the area - heat can work on the opposite basis and increase the inflammation process towards the affected joint.

That being said, it is often recommended to use heat on nearby muscle groups for symptom relief of tight, sore muscles. Of course, this does not mean that arthritis and the south do not go hand in hand - but the effect of warmer strokes aimed at arthritis and arthritis probably works on many levels which contributes to increased physical and mental well-being.


Exercises and training for those with Rheumatism

Adapted training in hot water pool, with exercise bands or low impact load can be very beneficial for those with rheumatism - and is highly recommended. Trips on rough terrain are also a good way to stay in shape. We also recommend performing daily stretching and movement exercises - as shown in the video below.


VIDEO: 17 Exercises against Polymyalgia Rheumatism

Polymyalgia rheumatica is a rheumatic disorder characterized by inflammatory reactions, and pain in the neck, shoulders and hips. In the video below, chiropractor and rehabilitation therapist Alexander Andorff shows 3 different training programs - one for each of the most common areas - with a total of 17 exercises.

VIDEO: 5 Movement Exercises for Those with Fibromyalgia

Knowing adapted exercise exercises adapted to those with fibromyalgia is very important. The video below shows five gentle exercises that can help you maintain mobility, circulation and relieve pain.

Join our family and subscribe to our YouTube channel (click here) for free exercise tips, exercise programs and health knowledge. Welcome!

Also read: 7 Exercises for Rheumatics

Do you have questions about the article or do you need any more tips? Ask us directly via our facebook page or via the comment box below.


Share Feel free to increase the knowledge of Rheumatism

Knowledge among the general public and health professionals is the only way to increase focus towards the development of new assessment and treatment methods for rheumatic pain diagnoses. We hope you take the time to share this further in social media and say thanks in advance for your help. Your sharing means a great deal to those affected.

Feel free to press the button above to share the post further. Sincere thanks to all who share.


NEXT PAGE: - THIS Should You Know About Fibromyalgia


Click on the image above to proceed to the next page.


Recommended Self-Help for Rheumatism

  1. Use of Compression Noise (The link opens in a new window).
  2. Use of Arnica cream (which this one) or heat conditioner against sore joints and muscles.


Please support our work by following us and sharing our articles on social media:

Youtube logo small- Please follow Vondt.net on YOUTUBE

facebook logo small- Please follow Vondt.net on FACEBOOK

Photos: Wikimedia Commons 2.0, Creative Commons, Freestockphotos and submitted reader contributions.

19 replies
  1. City says:

    Is it so that arthritis can lead to osteoarthritis? I took an MRI of the pelvis this spring and there they found findings compatible with arthritis in the IS joints (as well as prolapse in the back). New imaging study recently, CT, showed osteoarthritis. Why are not both displayed? Is it true that MRI can show previous changes? I have struggled for a long time with stiffness and pain in the back and pelvis (down towards the buttocks), knees, hips, ankles, neck and shoulders. Otherwise, I also have inflammation in the hip, hypermobile joints in the ankles and swaying back. I'm in my early 30's and thought it was older people who got osteoarthritis.

    • Thomas v / Vondt.net says:

      Hi Linn,

      It is not at all uncommon for people in their 30s to have osteoarthritis / osteoarthritis. Especially not considering that you have a prolapse in the lower back which indicates that there has been some compression load on you over the years - and that this gradually resulted in a disc prolapse.

      Arthritis simply means inflammation of a joint and can often occur in joints that are also affected by osteoarthritis. It is probably rather that you have less shock absorption due to dysfunctional intervertebral disc which means that there is more pressure on the joints and facet joints in the area - which in turn can lead to an increased incidence of wear.

      • City says:

        Thank you very much for the quick reply.

        It has been said that I may have arthritis / spondylitis. This was before I took the CT. Is it conceivable that the findings are due to the prolapse and not e.g. Repentance that has been mentioned? Or can it be due to both prolapse and rheumatic disease? I have rashes on Anti-CCP, but not HLA-B27. What activity is good to do? Swim?

        • Thomas v / Vondt.net says:

          Hi Linn,

          It is entirely possible.

          The exercises that are often recommended are elliptical machine and swimming - as well as hot water training if you have access to it. It is also possible that there is an offer near you - adapted to those with rheumatic disorders - if you consult with the municipality.

  2. Harrieth Nordgård (NORDKJOSBOTN) says:

    It should be mandatory that when you get such a disease, that we got such a prescription as this from the doctor. I think this was great!

    • HC says:


      Has low back, hip and shoulder pain.

      At times, I also have pain in my finger joints and ankles. I'm 36 years old. I have been bothered by this for many years and now the pain is so intense that I had to ask the doctor if it was not possible to refer me further to find out what is wrong.

      Was told that there was not much it could be. With a message to go to a physiotherapist and take brexidol. Just spent 2 weeks on the voltaren and do not think it helped much. The doctor took blood samples six months ago.

      I got a positive result on something that went on joints. In addition, I go on blood pressure medication. Should I rest assured that the doctor thinks there is nothing wrong with me? Have pain to such an extent that it is impossible for me to work and drive a car. The pain is made worse by sitting and lying down. Gets a little better when I move but they come back quickly. Is on sick leave several times a year due to this. Should I go to a private rheumatologist? Think this was terribly expensive. Hope you can make me wiser.

      • Nicolay v / Vondt.net says:

        Hi HC,

        This sounds both frustrating and debilitating. Being tossed around like a throwing ball in that way can really affect the psyche and overall health.

        1) What about training and exercises? Do you exercise regularly? What forms of exercise work for you?

        2) You write that the blood tests were positive on something that had to do with joints? Here you can ask him for a copy of the blood test results - in the event of a positive result, there is a strong indication that you may be going on to a rheumatological examination.

        3) You should consider going to another primary contact (chiropractor or manual therapist) who also has the right to be referred for a rheumatological examination. These two occupational groups also have the right to refer to imaging.

        4) Has previous imaging been taken? If so, what did they conclude?

        Please number your answers as shown above - this for a clearer dialogue.


        • Hc says:

          Thanks for the quick reply:)
          Yes, it is very frustrating and it is awful to have a lot of pain and a feeling of not being believed or taken seriously.

          1. I do not train as much as I have a fairly physical job and 0 profits. Have tried to train for periods, but have completely burned myself out on this. Feeling I'm getting tired and tired than usual. Takes supplements and does not lack anything according to blood tests. Have otherwise received some simple exercises to get the shoulder better.

          As for the blood tests, I was told that I could be referred to a specialist, but it was so rare that they actually found something that this was not necessary according to the doctor.

          3. I will read a little about manual therapist if this could be something.

          4. Pictures have not been taken as the doctor thinks this is something that has been more and more ignored and is seen as unnecessary.

          As you probably understand, I feel like I'm banging my head against the wall. Considering changing GP. Is it really the case that there is no point in mr or ct?

          • Nicolay v / vondt.net says:

            This is a clear indication of further examination by a rheumatologist. A referral in itself to a public examination is defended by this positive finding on your blood test.

  3. Rest says:

    Hi, can you recommend some doctors to any private clinic who are good at examining rheumatism and preferably tips for examining fatique?

    Is a person with a lot of misfortune and if something happens, then it happens to me… accident bird. Now there has been a lot of miscarriages, bile surgery, inflammation of the chest, etc. Then feel that the doctor soon does not think there is more.

    But what can it be;

    I struggle with constant fatigue and am never rested even after 8-10 hours of sleep. Must lie down to sleep during the day. Is 36 years old. Have had iron stores that go up and down, but the last blood test showed normal iron, but far too little vitamin D.

    I had surgery on the meniscus and cruciate ligament many years ago. But struggling with pain in both knees, finger joints and hip. Especially with weather changes.
    I often get cold, icy cold on my feet, fingers and buttocks.

    Exhausted and unconcentrated and unable to keep up. When someone says something, it is forgotten if it has not been written down.

    The pain in the hands and knees feels like aching pain. I have pain if I bend over, climb stairs, sit still or lie down. Gets completely stiff and hurries if I get up.

    I fly to the bathroom often and I feel like I pee more than I drink.

    Hope you can help.

  4. Mette N says:

    Hello. I am wondering about one thing. I have rheumatism and in some movements I "short circuit". Very nasty feeling, but lasts only a tiny moment and I'm back. Just son there is a jolt from the neck of the head.

  5. Merete Repvik Olsbø says:

    Hello. Why is ankylosing spondylitis crossed out?
    This was very good to read!
    Lots of useful information gathered.

  6. Anne says:

    Hello. I struggle with both thumbs and wrists hurting to be painful. Sometimes I lose the feeling in my arms - as if they are completely paralyzed. So then one just has to ask oneself and then wonder what one can do with this? Thank you in advance.

    • Nicolay v / Does Not Find says:

      Hey Melita!

      Scoliosis can not cause rheumatic inflammation of the iliosacral joints, but due to uneven curvature, one can experience that a pelvic joint is overloaded versus the other side - which in turn can lead to hypomobility and reduced function.

      But do I understand correctly if I understand you as having rheumatism? In that case, this could definitely cause irritation and inflammation of the pelvic joint (sacroilitis).

      With best regards,
      Nicolay v / Does Not Find

      • Melita says:

        I have been diagnosed with m46.1 spondylarthritis. Had ongoing treatment with two different biological drugs without satisfactory effect. MRI at the end of September still shows arthritis changes, bone marrow edema upper and middle left IS joints despite biological treatment for one year. The scoliosis was detected on X-ray in 2018. Right-convex thoracic and left-convex lumbar s-shaped, just before the start of biological drug treatment, but no one mentioned it before the last control in October last year. Because the biological treatment has little effect, they believe that scoliosis creates mechanical inflammation in the IS joint. Going for further examination in orthopedic, but the wait is terribly long. To me, it basically sounds very strange that scoliosis may be the cause and not the spondy arthritis that I was diagnosed with and which was MRI verified. Got far this, sorry but hope someone can bear to read and answer. I am desperate because I have been taken by biological medicine until the next check-up, when it will be decided what should be done next. I have received Vimovo, but it causes me so many stomach problems .. I am afraid the diagnosis will be re-evaluated and that I will be back to the start again.


Leave a reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to Contribute!

Write a comment

Your email address will not be published.