In life, growing old is something that we can’t avoid. Apart from the experiences and memories we gain as we go along with our lives, we also acquire different diseases that goes along with aging. We can see that some of our loved ones hold on to their hips and knees because of joint pains. Osteoarthritis is one of the most common diseases as a result of aging. It occurs when the cartilage in your joints are wear down overtime; it is also known as degenerative joint disease. Joints that are usually affected with osteoarthritis are the hands, hips, knees, lower back and neck. There is no definite cure for osteoarthritis but there are treatments that can help relieve the symptoms. One that can help in the management of osteoarthritis is surgery such as in seriously arthritic hips. In most major operations however, there is a need for you to modify certain everyday activities after the hip replacement surgery like cracking joints which is said to cause arthritis.
What Causes Osteoarthritis (OA)?
The definite cause is unknown but it is mainly attributed to aging. The cartilage, a rubbery tissue, is there to protect the joint from continuous pressure and friction brought by the bones. Over time there is damage to the cartilage that may further lead to bone weakness or formation of extra bone. Heredity is also linked with the disease. If there is a history of osteoarthritis in your family, then you there’s a chance that you can have the disease. Being overweight may also be a factor in having the disease.The joints and cartilages will have to deal with more weight than they could handle and that could cause additional damage. Fractures and joint injuries can also lead to OA as well as long term overuse in sports or daily activities. These are just some of the things that may cause Osteoarthritis.
What are the Symptoms of Osteoarthritis?
Generally, most sufferers complain that they feel stiffness and pain on the affected joint(s). The term “morning stiffness” has been coined due to the pain and stiffness that they usually feel in the morning. The pain described in the morning can be relieved with mild activity but will persist once pressure is continuously exerted. Rest may temporarily take the pain away but not for a long time. The symptoms will depend on the extent of damage as some will not feel anything even if x-ray results show that they have osteoarthritis.
Treatment for Osteoarthritis
As indicated earlier,there is no sure cure for osteoarthritis as this is marked by gradual deterioration due to age. The treatment for this is palliative which means that we only manage the symptoms and avoid surgery. Drug therapy, physical therapy and lifestyle changes are among others that can help in the management of symptoms. The best option however is surgery, especially if joints are severely damaged. Surgery might not be ideal for all, as most sufferers are in their late 60’s and some are with other underlying conditions. Also, post- surgical complications may arise not just from the operation, but from defective devices such as in hip replacement surgeries which lead to some people filing for a DePuy Pinnacle Lawsuit. As a whole, the best thing for you to do is to talk to your doctor regarding the treatments to know what works best.
Tags: Health and Fitness