Your Options PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 23 October 2009 01:09
 
kneepain
 
 
 
To better understand your options for managing joint pain we should first understand why we experience joint pain. Many different conditions can lead to joint pain and the most common of them are the following:
 
  1. Osteoarthrtis (OA), also called the "wear and tear arthritis", this usually effects people above 50 years old. After many years of using your joints the cartillages cushioning the ends of our joints literally wears away. When this happens bone rub to each other causing swelling and pain.
  2. Rheumatoid Arthritis  (RA), is an autoimmune disease that can affect multiple joints in the body. It usually starts at a younger age and women are morelikely to have it than men.
  3. Gout
  4. Post Traumatic Arthtritis. This type of arthritis years after injuring your joint.
 
 
Presently, osteoarthritis and many other diseases of the joint cannot be cured. The disease process in degenerative joint problems can be slowed down or modified and the pain can only be temporarily alleviated with various treatment. Eventually these forms of treament are not going to be helpful anymore and joint replacement may be necessary.

Your doctor will first try to diagnose and treat the condition that is causing your joint pain. The goal is to reduce pain and inflammation, and preserve joint function. Treatment options include:

Lifestyle Change
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

In early stages of osteoarthrtis lifestyle change may be all the treatment you need. If you are overweight, the first step is to decrease your weight. Studies shows that losing as little as 11 pounds can cut the risk of osteoarthritis by 50%.

Next, is to be involve in an exercise program or routine. Exercise improves mood and outlook, decrease pain and assist in maintaining a healthy weight. Exercising also allows us to maintain muscle coordination and strength which prevents fall related injuries and fractures. Your AOJR orthopedic doctor can make recomendations on which type of exercise has low impact on the affected joint but will  streghten the muscles around it. Sometime an appointment with a physical therapist is suggested.

During exercise make sure you are wearing shoes with extra protective padds or with rubber soles. Your doctor may even ask you to wear  braces  or joint supports. These materials not only feels comfortable it also prevent further damage to your joints. You may also want minimize wearing extra high heels, three-inch heel stresses your foot seven times more than a one-inch heel. In addition, heels put extra stress on your knees and may worsen your osteoarthritis.

 
 
 

Medications

 
 
After changing your lifestyle and you have not found relief, your doctor can give you oral and topical medication. Usually your doctor will start with anti-inflamatory drugs or analgesics for very mild pain or topical creams with methyl salicylate, depending on the intensity of pain.

nsaidFor patients (specially seniors) who are taking multiple medications for other conditions such as high blood pressure, the doctor should be the one to decide which painkiller to prescribe based on which is safest for you. Never self medicate. This is to prevent any complication with the other medicine you  are currently taking.  Always ask your docotor before taking any medicine even for over the counter drugs. If you want to change medication be sure to discuss all  the medications prescribed and non- prescribed you are currently taking.

 

Injections

injection

For people who don't find joint pain relief from oral or topical medications, the doctor can inject a steroid medication (which may be combined with a local anesthetic) directly into the joint every three to four months. Steroid injections are most commonly used in patients with arthritis, joint disease, or inflammation.

Other injection options include:

  • Removing fluid from the joint (this only relieves pain temporarily because the fluid eventually builds up again)
  • Viscosupplementation or Injections of hyaluronan, a synthetic version of the natural joint fluid
 
Operation
 
For severe pain which cannot be controlled by medication, theraphy & injections joint replacement procedure may be nescessary. Surgery may be the only option to be independent and mobile.
 
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This 2015 AOJR wants to talk to you and your community about arthritis. Take part and join us in  promoting awareness about the social, emotional and health impact of arthritis as well as its evidence based treatments. Help us improve lives by creating awareness. You can contact us by calling 710-8292 or email us at jointspecialists@aojr.ph 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Alcera" After the operation, I thought I wouldn't be ableto enjoy the same lifestyle as I had before. I was wrong, It's amazing how I can still enjoy activites likes dancing and aerobics."

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