How to Deal With Joint Pain Caused By CAD


Of all the various types of aches and pains we all struggle with, joint pain and arthritis are among the most difficult. This is due to the fact that our joints are responsible for so many critical functions.

Our hips, knees, and ankles support our weight, help us to pivot and turn, provide balance and many other functions. Our lower back is the center of our core and influences just about every movement of the body. When people suffer from back pain, especially the lower part, it can hinder everything from walking to breathing.

The upper body joints in our arms, shoulders, and upper back are all just as important. These are the parts we need to lift and carry, pull and push and even perform simple tasks such as writing or brushing our teeth. When we suffer from severe joint issues, particularly those which CAD causes, it can impact every aspect of our lives.

What Exactly Is CAD?

Cold Agglutinin Disease is a rare condition which greatly affects people’s autoantibodies in colder weather. The typical range for this is somewhere between 32 and 50 degrees F. These antibodies attach themselves to red blood cells and cause them to deteriorate. This can lead to anything from anemia to joint paint.

The latter condition is what we are focused on today. Somewhere between 80% and 99% of people who suffer from CAD also struggle with moderate to chronic joint pain. What happens in this condition when the thermostat drops is those autoantibodies mistake healthy red blood cells with harmful bacteria.

As you are probably aware, red blood cells are crucial in just about every function of the body. When these antibodies attach themselves to the blood cells, they begin to clump together. The resulting clumps then hinder or block blood flow, which is critical to joint health.

What Does Joint Pain Consist Of?

Joint pain can be any combination of general discomfort, stiffness or tightness, tenderness, inflammation and various other uncomfortable sensations. While it is commonly brought on by advancing years, those who suffer from CAD can experience it at any age. The fact that joints include so many moving parts, it’s easy for this kind of condition to affect any of them.

Tendons, ligaments, bone, muscle and cartilage can all cause joint pain when any of them are damaged or not working properly. With CAD specifically, these symptoms are sometimes acute but in most cases they are severe. Colder weather can bring them on suddenly or make them worse if you are already experiencing issues.

What Are Common Ways to Manage These Symptoms?

While there is no cure for CAD, there are various ways to try and manage it to keep flare-ups at a minimum. If you are lucky enough to have one of the milder cases, you may be able to keep it in check with over the counter pain medicine.  Avoiding cold weather whenever possible is another option. In more severe cases, you may need prescription medication. Other possible remedies include moist heat applied to the joint and small range-of-motion exercises.