Top 10 Causes Of Joint Pain In Adults

Top 10 Causes Of Joint Pain In Adults

Table of Contents

Joint pain is a common problem that affects adults of all ages, from the young to the elderly. This pain can range from a minor nuisance to a debilitating chronic disease, making it a critical issue to pay attention to. The causes of joint pain in adults differ from wear and tear caused by aging to injuries and genetics. In this valuable article from Dr. Sanaz’s website, we first provide a general perspective of the joint, its function, and its components and then examine the most important causes of joint pain in adults.

Top 10 Causes Of Joint Pain In Adults 01

Be aware of the value of handling body movement.

  • Types of joints in terms of function

According to the amount of mobility between the adjacent bones, joints are classified as follows:

    • Synarthrosis (immobility: Synarthrosis):  Synarthrosis joints are an essential part of the skeletal system, helping to provide structure and stability to the body while allowing for movement in specific directions.
      These joints are often solid and stable, helping to support the body’s weight while limiting motion in specific directions. However, they can also be associated with a higher risk of arthritis and degenerative joint disease due to their lack of flexibility and movement.
    • Amphiarthrosis: This type of joint allows for movement between two bones in two or more directions. The movement can occur in various planes, such as bending, twisting, turning, or rotating, making amphiarthrosis joints flexible and adaptable. They also help distribute the body’s weight evenly and absorb the impact shock during activities.
      Amphiarthrosis joints can also be more susceptible to injury than synarthrosis joints since they have more significant potential for movement and flexibility.
    • Diarthrosis: Diarthrosis allow for a wide range of movements, including fine motor skills, such as writing, typing, and playing musical instruments. This type of joint is particularly important in the hands, feet, and ankles, where the combination of diarthrosis and ligaments provides stability and support while also allowing for complex movements.

It is good to know that stringy joints can also be considered amphiarthrosis and cartilaginous joints synarthrosis, depending on their location and function.

Types of joints in terms of function
  • What does the joint consist of?

To get to know the joints of the body, we must first know about the anatomy of this vital body part. The joint has different structures and shapes and is generally divided into three categories: movable, semi-movable, and non-movable. Each of the joints consists of the following parts:

    • Cartilage:

It covers the ends of two bones as a single layer and helps two bones move smoothly on each other.

    • Meniscus:

They are seen in the knee joints, and their appearance resembles the English number 8. They act like washers, and their material is very similar to cartilage, and like a cushion, it absorbs the intense pressure applied to the joint.

    • Joint capsule:

In the form of a bag that covers the joint and is connected to the bone from the top and bottom.

    • Ligament:

 Ligaments or ligaments are the connective tissues that connect two bones outside the joint capsule like a strong string due to their high strength. This prevents excess movements in the joint and helps stabilize the joint.

    • Synovial membrane and fluid:

A layer of cells covers the inside of the joint capsule and causes synovial fluid to be secreted. A liquid that is slimy and slippery and helps the easy movement of cartilages and soft tissues at the ends of bones.

components of joint
  • How does the joint work?

Joints are responsible for moving connections between two or more bones. Each joint of the body consists of the surfaces of the involved bones, the joint cavity, and the joint capsule, and these joint surfaces of the bones are covered by a layer (thickness of 0.2 to 0.5 mm) of cartilage. 

It is interesting to know that the thickest layer of cartilage is in the kneecap, with a thickness of 6 mm. The function of the surfaces is to prevent excessive friction and wear of the joint’s bones, and the cartilage is responsible for transferring the pressure in the joint to the bone located in its lower part. 

The importance of this issue becomes apparent when the joints have to bear heavy loads, such as hip and knee joints, more than other parts.

Top 10 Causes Of Joint Pain In Adults 02

Is it arthritis or joint pain?

Do not be mistaken! Basically, arthritis is one of the types of joint pain.
Arthritis is one of the most common joint diseases that affects millions of people every year. 

Following the gradual destruction of the inter-articular cartilages, this condition causes the two ends of the bones to come into direct contact with each other, resulting in severe pain in various areas such as the knees, hands, neck, spine and other parts of the body. Parts.

Arthritis is one of the diseases that increase with age. On the other hand, research has shown that the probability of this disease occurring in women is higher than in men.

You may also be interested in reading the article “ What Are The Risk Factor For Spondyloarthritis? Practical Guide“.

Arthritis or joint pain?

Top 10 Causes of Joint Pain in Adults

Joint pain is one of the most common problems that can happen to people at any age. Of course, this disease increases and worsens with time in the elderly. 

Elderly and middle-aged people may feel this pain in one or most of their joints. 

Unfortunately, as age passes, joint pain becomes more and more painful. Knee pain is one of the most common joint-related diseases, followed by shoulder and hip pain. Of course, joint pain occurs in any part of the body, and the patient may also suffer from this disease in different parts of his body, such as ankles, shoulders, hands, etc. 

If you have any of the following symptoms, you may have joint pain, and it is better to see your doctor as soon as possible:

  1. feeling and occurrence of excessive softness in the joint;
  2. the feeling of heat in the joint;
  3. joint locking;
  4. limping when walking due to joint pain;
  5. joint weakness or stiffness;
  6. swelling and redness;
  7. Decreased or loss of joint range of motion;
Top 10 Causes Of Joint Pain In Adults 03

Joint pain can have causes such as:

  1. Arthritis
  2. Rheumatoid arthritis
  3. Osteoarthritis
  4. Psoriatic arthritis
  5. Gout
  6. Trauma
  7. Obesity
  8. Infections
  9. Fibromyalgia
  10. Osteoporosis

And so on.

Top 10 Causes of Joint Pain
  • arthritis

There are two main types of arthritis: inflammatory and non-inflammatory.

Examples of inflammatory arthritis include infectious arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and gout.

An example of non-inflammatory arthritis is osteoarthritis, the most common type of arthritis.

The location and pattern of joint pain, the presence or absence of joint swelling, the speed of its onset, and the presence of signs and symptoms outside the joint (such as skin rashes) can help diagnose inflammatory and non-inflammatory arthritis.

arthritis/ joint pain
  • Rheumatoid arthritis (RA)

   Inflammatory arthritis usually causes joint stiffness at rest, especially morning stiffness. 

Certain types of inflammatory arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), affect the joints symmetrically (that is, they affect the same joints on both sides of the body). Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) )) is a chronic inflammatory disease. 

It can affect many body parts but usually involves the joints and causes pain and stiffness. The cause of RA is unknown. This differs from osteoarthritis (OA), the most common form of arthritis. Arthritis occurs when the protective cartilage of the joints wears down over time.

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA)
  • Osteoarthritis (OA)

Non-inflammatory arthritis usually causes pain that increases with movement and weight bearing and is relieved by rest. Joints on one or both sides of the body may be affected.

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a non-inflammatory and painful disease affecting one or more joints. It causes cartilage loss, often accompanied by mild inflammation, changes in the bone near the joint, and muscle weakness around the joint. 

These changes lead to pain, stiffness, and difficulty moving the joint comfortably.

Osteoarthritis (OA) / joint pain
  • Psoriatic arthritis

Psoriatic arthritis or psoriatic arthritis refers to an inflammatory musculoskeletal disease that has autoimmune characteristics and is a type of inflammatory arthritis that is typically found in people with psoriasis skin disease.

The duration and severity of psoriasis skin disease increase the possibility of developing arthritis.

Inflammation of the joint synovium or synovitis in psoriatic arthritis is similar to rheumatoid arthritis, although the degree of hyperplasia and cellularity is somewhat less than in rheumatoid arthritis.

  • Gout

Septic arthritis, another name for gout, occurs when microbes can enter the inner parts of the joints and multiply in the synovial tissue of the joint, which is more blood-filled than other parts.

One of the main symptoms of this arthritis is severe pain with fever. The entry of microbes into the joints can happen in different ways. Deep tears on the surface of the skin or infectious diseases such as sore throat cause bacteria to enter the joints through the bloodstream.

Related: “What Is The Difference Between Intermittent, Remittent, And Relapsing Fever?

Gout / joint pain
  • Trauma

Trauma means any impact, damage, and injury by a source outside the body to the bones or organs of the body. When trauma occurs, moving the patient is a susceptible task because there is a possibility of cutting the spinal cord and inflicting more severe injuries on the person. The person should not move their limbs.

Trauma / joint pain
  • Obesity

Increased weight forces the joints to bear more load. When you are overweight, the stress on your joints, especially your hips and knees, is much greater. The fat cells that increase around the joint release toxic substances to the joint cartilage tissue and cause damage.

There is a comprehensive guide for this in the article “ Healthy Weight Loss Per Week For Obese.”

Obesity and joint pain
  • Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia (Fibromyalgia) is a chronic syndrome associated with pain in specific points, joint stiffness when moving, tiredness, sleep disorder, depression, and anxiety.

These symptoms and complications are only attributed to fibromyalgia syndrome if they are not related to a specific and known disease in an organ of the body. People with fibromyalgia are usually more sensitive to pain than others due to the brain’s abnormal pain processing.

  • Osteoporosis

Osteoporosis is one of the most common joint diseases, especially in women after menopause, which weakens the bones and makes them brittle in the long term. Fortunately, there are many ways to prevent this disease. 

These people, who are prone to sudden and unexpected fractures, often do not have any specific symptoms in the early stages of the disease, and they will not be aware of their severe osteoporosis until they suffer a fracture.

healthy bone vs Osteoporosis
  • Avascular necrosis

Avascular necrosis is a disease that occurs due to a temporary or permanent lack of blood supply to the bone. When the blood supply to the bone is cut off, the bone tissue dies and causes it to collapse.

The joint surface may also collapse if avascular necrosis occurs near the joint.

Symptoms of this disease include joint pain and limited range of motion.


In that regard, reading the article “The Science of White Blood Cells: Inside the Body’s Invisible Army” is highly recommended.

Avascular necrosis


A joint is a part of the body whose task is to provide the necessary conditions for the bones to move quickly. In simpler words, the ossification of the human body is not integrated, and they are connected in a part called a joint, and it is these joints that cause the bones to move quickly by reducing friction. 

Unfortunately, because the joints are part of the body’s movement system, they have much activity compared to other organs, and this causes them to suffer from joint pain, disease, and injury more and faster.

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4 Responses

  1. My father had a bump on his leg for many years and it was bothering him a lot and we did not understand where the problem came from. Thank you for your valuable article. Please write an article about gout. Is it possible to inherit? And what should be done?

    1. People with a family history of gout are likelier to develop the condition. This is because gout is associated with a genetic defect affecting how the body processes uric acid, which increases the risk of gout.

      Here are some tips to reduce the risk of gout
      1. Manage your weight
      2. Limit your intake of food and drinks high in purines, such as red meat, fish, shellfish, and alcohol. Eating more foods rich in folic acid, such as leafy greens, asparagus, and broccoli, may decrease the risk of developing gout.
      3. Drink plenty of water: Staying hydrated helps flush uric acid from the body, which is especially important for people with gout.
      4. Alcohol consumption can increase the risk of gout.
      5. Monitor your uric acid levels

      For a complete study in this field, refer to the “What is Gout and How to Control Gout Symptoms“.

  2. Thank you for your sharing. I am worried that I lack creative ideas. It is your article that makes me full of hope. Thank you. But, I have a question, can you help me?

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Author and specialist

Dr. Majid Zahrabi,


  • Board Certified Neurosurgeon
  • DHA certificate holder
  • Plantation certificate holder, France
  • Certified holder of Discogol, France
  • A pioneer in the non-surgical treatment of disc herniation in the Middle East and CIS countries.
  • Under the training and coaching of Professor Jacques Theron (founder of Discogel Therapy) since 2008
  • More than 400 successful cervical and 1300 lumbar discogel injections
  • Trained and certified several neurosurgeons and spine surgeons in the Middle East and CIS countries for the treatment of Discogel
  • Strong belief in patient-centered care planning and participation
  • Neurosurgeon and spine surgeon at Imam Khomeini and Amir Mazandarani Hospital, Sari, Iran, with more than 430 surgeries annually, 2000-2011
  • Neurosurgeon and spine surgeon at Farmaniyeh, Nikan and Yas Sepid Hospital, Tehran, Iran, with more than 400 surgeries annually, 2011-2012
  • Neurosurgeon at Iranian Hospital, Dubai, 2022-2023
  • Since 2015, he has been working as a reference doctor for the treatment of intervertebral disc herniation with Discogel and has trained many doctors of spine-related specialties in various countries of the Middle East and CIS in person/practically and online.



  • Individual training sessions under the direct supervision of Professor Jacques Theron in Discogel treatment, 2008-2020
  • Training sessions under the supervision of Professor Thierry Boye on spinal implants, 2007
  • Participation and presentation in several national and international medical and neuro-spinal conferences
  • Board certificate by Iran Neurosurgery Board, 2001
  • Neurosurgery assistant training course, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran, 1996-2001 (In 2001, he graduated from Isfahan University of Medical Sciences with the first rank in the country.
  • His thesis the titled:The Application of human amniotic membrane in repair of dura matter in dogs.” ( It was happening for the first time in the world. )
  • General medical education, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran, 1984-1993


Published books:

  • CT scan of the brain for doctors
  • Etiology and treatment of painful spine disorders
  • Atlas of diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of spine disorders
  • The most common mistakes in the treatment of spinal disorders
  • Reading brain CT scan in simple language (3rd place in the book of the year)
  • Treatment of head and spine injuries

Publications and articles:

  • Bacteriostatic and bactericidal effects of DISCOGEL® (https://www.researchgate.net/)
  • Muscle recovery, reduction of pain, and improvement of movement strategies in patients with lumbar discopathy after injection of Discogel.
  • The article on the initial results of the treatment of intervertebral disc herniation with discogel injection, which won the second-best poster rank at the Pan Arab International Congress of Interventional Radiology (March 14-16, 2015) and was accepted for presentation at the Chicago Pain Congress.
  • The use of human amniotic membrane in dura mater repair in dogs, a study for the first time in the world.



  • Annual Congress of Physiotherapists of Iran, 2019
  • Chicago International Pain Congress, 2019
  • Iran International Pain Management Congress, 2018
  • Annual Congress of Physiotherapists of Iran, 2018
  • Presentation of Discogel as an innovative solution for the treatment of spinal disc herniation in Armenia for orthopedic specialists and neurosurgeons, 2017
  • First Live Workshop and Seminar on Minimally Invasive Disc Therapy (DISCON), 2017
  • Presentation of Discogel as an innovative solution for the treatment of spinal disc herniation in Azerbaijan for orthopedic specialists and neurosurgeons, 2016
  • Seminar of Iranian official managers, 2016
  • Presentation of Discogel as an innovative solution for the treatment of spinal disc herniation in Tajikistan for orthopedic specialists and neurosurgeons, 2016
  • International Neurological Intervention Congress in Iran, 2014
  • Educational seminar for nurses on treatment approaches for head and spine trauma, 2014
  • Educational seminar for general practitioners on treatment approaches for head and spine trauma, 2014
  • Speech at the Retraining Seminar for General Practitioners and Specialists in Dubai (Discon) in 2017
  • Speech in the internal retraining courses of Irani Hospital, Dubai
  • Holding lecture sessions and practical workshops on the treatment of intervertebral disc herniation with discogel injection in Azerbaijan, Tajikistan, Ukraine, Oman, and Armenia during the years 2015 to 2021.
  • Giving a lecture and holding a practical workshop for neurosurgeons in Vietnam at Ho Chi Minh City University in 2023

Dr. Majid Zohrabi started treating his patients in Dubai in 2022 and continues his activities in private medical centers in the UAE.