Pain and inflammation from arthritis can pop up at any time, but is your pain truly from arthritis or just from a wrenched muscle? A wrenched muscle can be painful, but over time it will heal and get back to normal, but with arthritis the pain can be constant. Just like the tires on your car, the cartilage in your knee wears away over time, which can lead to painful bone-on-bone contact. Untreated arthritis can cause a decreased range of motion and muscle pain in your wrists, hands, shoulders, hips, and knees.
Arthritis symptoms can include:
- Ongoing joint pain
- Joint swelling or stiffness
- Warmth and redness in a joint
- Loss of range of motion
You don’t need to live with the pain! Work with your physical therapist to develop a treatment plan that will get you back to your best as soon as possible. The treatment plan could include either a surgical or a non-surgical approach to treatment.
If you are diagnosed with arthritis, your doctor might recommend a non-surgical approach to stop or even prevent arthritis pain. Their treatment plan could include:
- modifying the exercise routine to help you avoid arthritis pain
- Maintain a healthy weight to minimize strain on your joints in the lower extremities
- Toning your joints to keep ligaments and muscles flexible
If non-surgical approaches don’t improve your pain, you might need a surgical treatment to repair or replace the damaged joint. Surgical treatment options include:
- Arthroscopic surgery or a minimally invasive procedure, surgeons use a small scope to examine and remove damaged cartilage and repair the joint.
- Partial and total joint replacement surgery replaces the worn surfaces of the joint with smooth-surfaced metal and plastic components. The durable materials used in replacement surgery let the patients continue their normal activities they enjoy pain-free for 15 years or more in many cases.