neuropathic joint disease(redirected from Charcot joints)
neuropathic joint disease
Etymology: Gk, neuron + pathos, disease
a chronic progressive degenerative disease of one or more joints, characterized by swelling, joint instability, hemorrhage, heat, and atrophic and hypertrophic changes in the bone. Pain is usually less severe than would be expected by the appearance of the joint on an x-ray film. The disease is the result of an underlying neurological disorder, such as tabes dorsalis from syphilis, diabetic neuropathy, leprosy, or congenital absence or depression of pain sensation. Early recognition of the disease and prophylactic protection of the joint may prevent further damage in some cases. Surgical reconstruction is not usually effective because healing is slow. Amputation may be necessary. Also called Charcot's joint.