First of all what do you understand by Joint?
Joint is the place where one bone moves over the other.The bones are being held by the ligaments. The bone surface is being covered by cartilage that would stop the bones from rubbing each other. If at all Arthritis is caused its important to know which type of arthritis is being caused. Try to consult an doctor and try to know whether the cause is due to cartilage loss, infection, inflammation and lot more reasons.
Agree with you, along with that there is the synovial fluid in the joints which acts as a lubricant and prevents friction and damage. Arthritis is inflammation of the joints. Bursa are sac like structures above and below the joints which helps in the movement of the tendons around the joints. These can get inflamed causing bursitis.
Joint conditions are diagnosed by a physical examination. Sometimes blood tests, x rays, bone scan, CT and nerve conduction studies can help clinch the diagnosis. Treatment usually depends on the cause and painkillers are given if the pain is severe.
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