Thanks for this educational blog from Warm Socks about ERA.
Originally posted on ∞ itis:
Enthesitis Related Arthritis is a form of arthritis that begins in people under 16 years of age. Although it is more commonly diagnosed in boys, girls can also have ERA. Onset is usually between the ages of 9-12.
ERA is also sometimes simply called enthesitis. If a child has been diagnosed with enthesitis by a pediatric rheumatologist and requires long-term follow-up, verify with the doctor that the full name of the disease is ERA aka enthesitis-related juvenile idiopathic arthritis. Not only is enthesitis one of the forms of JIA, but it is also part of a group of diseases called spondyloarthropathies.
This type of arthritis is significantly different from osteoarthritis, which is the type of arthritis typically seen in older people and athletes. In osteoarthritis (OA), the cartilage cushion at the joint between two bones wears away. Bone-on-bone is extremely painful. With OA, tylenol can help. So can surgery to replace grandma’s worn-out joint. In stark contrast, ERA is an autoimmune disease (from G. autos – self, and L. immunus - from which we get our word “immune”). In autoimmune diseases, the immune system commits treason and turns on the body’s tissues that it’s supposed to be protecting. Tylenol does not help. A full-body attack by the immune system is dramatically different than the wearing away of a single joint.