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Other causes of the inflammation can be infectious. Septic arthritis is caused by a bacterial or fungal infection. Lyme disease or Ehrlichia infection can also cause arthritis. Auto-immune diseases, or what is now called immune- mediated diseases, such as Lupus can cause swollen, painful, inflamed joints. More rarely, tumors can cause arthritis.
Treatment for arthritis should be directed to the inciting cause if possible. Surgery may be needed to stabilize a joint. Medical management of arthritis is best done using what is called a multimodal approach.
A multimodal approach may include nutritional changes, environmental changes (physiotherapy), Non-steroidal Anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs), pain killers (Tramadol) and/or chondroprotectives (Adequan/Cartrophen). NSAIDs have many types. In general, it is recommended to use NSAIDs developed for pets (Metacam), and not ones made for use in people as those are highly likely to cause ulcers in dogs, and most NSAIDs are toxic in cats.