Osteoarthritis sufferers already know just how painful and inconvenient it can be. Simple acts such as getting in and out of your car or opening a jar can be surprisingly challenging, and the pain, swelling and stiffness in the joints: can be debilitating. Osteoarthritis generally affects individuals after the age of 45 but is also common in athletes who are younger. As a disease of the joints where the cartilage in the joint begins to break down over time, Osteoarthritis typically affects the hips, knees, hands and feet. Since cartilage in the joint cannot heal itself, those who suffer from Osteoarthritis benefit from treatment once symptoms present themselves.
There are a number of surgical and non-surgical treatment options for Osteoarthritis sufferers.
Surgical treatment of Osteoarthritis may include:
- Joint replacement
- Bone realignment also known as osteotomy
- The fusing of bones
- Arthroscopy and debridement which involves the cleaning out of bone and cartilage fragments that may be the cause of pain and inflammation. There is some scientific evidence, however, that this sort of surgery may not give people any material relief in the long term.
Surgery can seem invasive; therefore many Osteoarthritis sufferers prefer non-surgical treatments for relief from Osteoarthritis. These are also quite effective. Non-surgical treatment options for Osteoarthritis include:
- Hot and Cold Therapy
- Medication that relieves pain and inflammation
- Physical therapy
- Weight reduction
- Targeted Exercise, such as that prescribed by a physiotherapist
- Assistive devices such as custom foot orthotics and custom knee bracing
- Durolane injections
Durolane injections have become very popular as an alternative treatment for Osteoarthritis and involve injections directly into the joint affected. Durolane is a gel that contains hyaluronic acid that lubricates joints. This improves joint-function and range of motion. Durolane’s cushioning of the joints also brings pain relief to Osteoarthritis sufferers. These injections are quick to administer and are an innovative drug- free alternative treatment.
As Durolane injections target the affected body part, they may also offer long term relief by helping to delay or reduce the need for hip or knee replacement. So starting on injections early in the course of osteoarthritis is imperative. This is why many younger people with osteoarthritis have Durolane injections.
Since Osteoarthritis is a disease that occurs more regularly within the aging population, seniors may prefer Durolane injections as they pose considerably less risk than surgery. While Osteoarthritis surgeries are performed every day posing minimal risk, many see Durolane injections as a method of avoiding the headache of possible post-surgical complications. Reactions to anesthesia, bleeding inside the joints, blood clots, blood vessel or nerve damage, damage to cartilage, muscles, ligaments or tendons or infection are unpleasant side-effects that Durolane treatments help Osteoarthritis sufferers avert. Each individual’s personal circumstances, health and lifestyle will play a role in customizing a treatment plan that works right for them.
In many cases the best treatment for Osteoarthritis can be found in sports therapy clinics that provide regular assistance to athletes and non-athletes who suffer from it. The best sports therapy clinics will likely provide access to a multi-disciplinary medical team. There are many treatment options for Osteoarthritis, therefore you may want to educate yourself and explore several at once. The additional benefit of sports therapy clinics is one-stop access to a team of professionals who can help in this regard.
For more information about Durolane injections, treatment for Osteoarthritis and alternatives to Osteoarthritis Surgery please call 416-800-0800 or visit www.aesm.ca