Arthritis Pain Relief
Pain relievers, such as acetaminophen or medications known as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), can help control swelling and pain. It is important to consult your doctor before taking medication for joint pain.
Assistive devices, such as a cane or walker, can help reduce the pressure placed on joints and alleviate some pain. Resting after activity can also help control moderate joint pain.
The technique of joint replacement uses prosthetic implants to replace the damaged sections of bone and cartilage in the joint. The purpose of the procedure is to restore function and mobility and to provide relief from joint pain.
The most common reason joints are replaced is osteoarthritis, which is the diagnosis in 90% of patients receiving a new joint. However, patients may be candidates for joint replacement if they suffer from any of the following conditions:
Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)
This is significantly less common than osteoarthritis, affecting 1.3 million Americans, mostly women. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease, the cause of which is unknown. The body’s immunological system attacks healthy tissue, causing inflammation of the joint lining and subsequent joint damage.
Avascular Necrosis (AVN)
Also known as osteonecrosis, this is a disorder where the blood supply to the bone is compromised, causing weakness and potential bone collapse. Mostly occurring in people between the ages of 30 and 60, AVN most commonly affects alcoholics, people suffering from rheumatoid arthritis or systemic lupus, and people ingesting high doses of steroids.
Post-Traumatic Arthritis (PTA)
Injuries to the joint and cartilage which do not fully heal may lead to an arthritic condition.
A disorder whereby bone formation accelerates, creating changes in the shape and strength of the bone.