Reiter’s Syndrome

Below you will find more information about Reiter’s Syndrome from Medigest. If you believe that you are suffering from any of the symptoms of Reiter’s Syndrome it is important that you obtain an accurate diagnosis from a medical professional to ensure that you obtain the correct medication or treatment for your condition. There are medical conditions that carry similar symptoms associated with Reiter’s Syndrome and therefore the information provided by Medigest is offered as a guideline only and should never be used in preference to seeking professional medical advice. The information relating to Reiter’s Syndrome comes from a third party source and Medigest will not be held liable for any inaccuracies relating to the information shown.

Definition

Reiter's syndrome is a medical condition characterized by three seemingly unrelated symptoms: redness of the eyes, arthritis, and urinary tract problems. It is a form of seronegative spondyloarthropathy, causing inflammation throughout the body, particularly in parts of the spine and at joints connecting the tendons and bones. Reiter's syndrome is also referred to as a form of reactive arthritis, because the resulting arthritis occurs as a reaction to an infection that started in a different part of the body.

Diagnosis

There is no specific test to confirm Reiter's syndrome; and as such, diagnosis can be difficult. When Reiter's syndrome is suspected, physicians must examine the patient carefully to rule out other potential causes of arthritis. The patient's medical history and current symptoms may provide indicative clues. Physicians may also use X-rays to help confirm a diagnosis of Reiter's syndrome. X-rays of afflicted patients often reveal spondylitis, sacroiliitis, swelling of soft tissues, cartilage damage, or bone deposits in the joints where the tendon connects to the bone.

Treatment

To date, there is no specific cure for Reiter's syndrome. Treatment is often directed towards symptom relief. Short periods of bed rest and exercise to stimulate affected areas are often recommended. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, corticosteroid injections, antibiotics, and immunosuppressive medicines are some of the medications used in treatment.

Symptoms and Signs

When caused by a preceding infection, the symptoms of Reiter's syndrome usually appear between 1-3 weeks after the infection. The most common symptom is inflammation of the tissues as a reaction to an injury or disease. Swelling, redness, heat, and pain are indicative signs. Although Reiter's syndrome can affect many different parts of the body, it most commonly affects the joints, urogenital tract, and the eyes. Less common symptoms of Reiter's syndrome include skin rashes, mouth ulcers, and heart-valve problems.

Causes

One of the most common bacteria associated with Reiter's syndrome is Chlamydia trachomatis, which is transmitted sexually. This form of Reiter's syndrome is also known as genitourinary or urogenital Reiter's syndrome. Several other bacteria associated with Reiter's syndrome, such as Salmonella, Shigella, Yersinia, and Campylobacter, cause infections via the digestive tract, usually as a result of food poisoning.

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