Arthritis; Types, Treatments, When to See a Doctor
Did you know there are about 100 forms of arthritis? Usually, the major symptoms include joint stiffness and pain. Arthritis affects about 25.7 million individuals, interfering with their daily life activities. Typically, arthritis has no cure, but you can successfully manage it and live a better life quality. The arthritis Medford specialists at Southern Oregon Orthopedics provide integrated diagnosis and treatments for arthritis to restore your health and function. This article will provide you with more information about arthritis.
What is arthritis?
It’s a severe joint disease that causes damage to various body joints, including the spine, knee, and wrist. Arthritis occurs in more than 100 forms. The most typical ones include osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
This type of arthritis causes your immune system to damage the healthy tissues in the joints. Rheumatoid arthritis causes inflammation and chronic pain leading to limited joint movement.
It is a degenerative disorder that destroys the cartilage that protects the bone ends in your joints. Damaged cartilage causes bones to rub into each other, causing friction, pain, and inflammation.
Other types of arthritis occur when bacteria or viruses enter the joints. Metabolic arthritis results from the accumulation of uric acid in your joints, forming needle-like crystals. The crystals cause joint irritation, usually on the big toe leading to swelling and pain.
When to see a doctor for arthritis?
During the early stages, arthritis is not severe, and you can use over-the-counter medications or ice to ease the pain and inflammation. Rest, physical therapy, and at-home exercises can also help strengthen your muscles and enhance firmness in your joints.
If arthritis pain prevents you from performing your daily tasks, you need to schedule a diagnostic evaluation with the Southern Oregon Orthopedics & Paragon Orthopedic Center team.
The team uses X-rays, among other imaging tests, to assess your joints. They also conduct a physical exam to determine the strength and flexibility of your joints.
What are the available treatments for arthritis?
Over-the-counter medications may not provide you with optimal pain relief. Your provider prescribes you medications to ease your symptoms to allow you to participate in physical therapy. Other treatments may include the following.
Your provider may recommend corticosteroid injections if medications do not relieve your symptoms. They administer the injections directly to your joints, providing immediate results.
Joint repair surgery
Your orthopedic specialist suggests joint repair surgery to resurface and realign the joint ends.
Joint replacement surgery
In severe arthritis cases, surgery might be necessary to replace the damaged joints with artificial joints. The team at Southern Oregon Orthopedics also offers synthetic cartilage implants to rebuild the joint cushioning and enhance flexibility and pain relief.
Rehabilitation services are available after surgery to bring back your joint function.
If you are suffering from joint inflammation and pain, you are not alone. Arthritis affects about 58.5 million people in the US. The disease is likely to occur if you have other chronic conditions, including diabetes, heart disease, or obesity. Though it has no cure, there are medications and treatments to manage the symptoms and improve life quality. Contact Southern Oregon Orthopedics & Paragon Orthopedic Center today for an evaluation.