Arthritis: Symptoms & Signs

Medically Reviewed on 11/30/2020

Arthritis refers to inflammation of the joints. It affects people of all ages and has many different causes. There are over 100 arthritis conditions.

Signs and symptoms of arthritis depend on the exact type of arthritis. The hallmark symptom is joint pain, although other signs and symptoms can include

Arthritis can affect joints throughout the body -- in the hands, feet, ankles, wrists, knees, hip, back, or neck. Other associated symptoms and signs can include

  • difficulty walking,
  • muscle weakness,
  • bony outgrowths near the joints,
  • locking of the joint, and
  • decreased range of motion of the joints.

Causes of arthritis

Infections, wear and tear on the body, inherited conditions, trauma, or other disorders can cause arthritis.

Other arthritis symptoms and signs

  • Bony Outgrowths Near the Joints
  • Decreased Range of Motion of the Joints
  • Difficulty Walking
  • Joint Deformity
  • Joint Stiffness or Soreness
  • Joint Swelling
  • Joint Tenderness
  • Locking of the Joint
  • Muscle Weakness
  • Skin Redness


The term arthritis refers to stiffness in the joints. See Answer

Subscribe to MedicineNet's Arthritis Newsletter

By clicking "Submit," I agree to the MedicineNet Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy. I also agree to receive emails from MedicineNet and I understand that I may opt out of MedicineNet subscriptions at any time.

Jameson, J. Larry, et al. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 20th Ed. New York: McGraw-Hill Education, 2018.