Infectious Arthritis Treatment
For people with infectious arthritis, treatment can often cure the condition. Treatment options may differ, depending on what's causing the infectious arthritis (as well as other factors) and can involve medications, such as antibiotics or antifungal medications. Other forms of treatment include joint drainage, surgery, and splinting and rest.
How Is Infectious Arthritis Treated?
Infectious arthritis is not a long-term condition. With treatment, infectious arthritis can be cured.
There are several different infectious arthritis causes, and treatment will vary, depending on the cause. Treatment options may include any of the following:
- Joint drainage
- Splinting and rest.
For some types of infectious arthritis, early diagnosis and treatment is important to prevent permanent joint damage.
Medications Used to Treat Infectious Arthritis
The specific medications healthcare providers recommend for the treatment of infectious arthritis will depend on the results of the synovial fluid analysis (see Diagnosing Infectious Arthritis).
If the healthcare provider suspects septic arthritis, Lyme arthritis, tuberculosis arthritis, or gonococcal arthritis, he or she will probably prescribe antibiotics. Antibiotics may be given initially though an IV. After a period of time, the healthcare provider may have the person take antibiotics by mouth instead. The length of treatment with antibiotics will depend on the specific cause of infectious arthritis. Streptococcal arthritis can usually be cured with 10 to 14 days of treatment with antibiotics. Other types of bacteria may require three to six weeks of treatment.
Doctors treat cases of fungal arthritis with antifungal medication. Viral arthritis typically does not require any treatment.