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Osteoarthritis Treatment Health Feed

Osteoarthritis Pain - Can Ayurveda Help?

Osteoarthritis Pain - Can Ayurveda Help?

Osteoarthritis is referred to as a degenerative condition where the protecting cartilage of a particular body joint (which helps in smooth movement) slowly wears away with time. Osteoarthritis occurs mainly in joints of the hand, neck, hips, spine and knees. As time passes, osteoarthritis might result in severe and unbearable pain along with increased stiffness in the affected parts of the body. The affected body joints might also lose flexibility, which might result in a particularly unpleasant sensation.

Causes and risk factors
You could be at risk of suffering from osteoarthritis due to any of the following factors

  • If you are suffering from obesity.
  • There is history of osteoarthritis within the family
  • You have suffered severe injury in one or many body joints in the past.
  • You are beyond the age of 60.
  • Your job requires you to put considerable stress in one of the body joints.

Ayurvedic approach to osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis tends to be a chronic condition and can never be fully cured although it can be controlled and reduced drastically. Ayurvedic treatments can offer a suitable and potent remedy to patients suffering from osteoarthritis. In Ayurvedic scriptures, Osteoarthritis occurs as a result of an imbalance of the Vata Dosha. This condition occurs primarily because of a regular consumption of stale and unhealthy foods, which result in severe pain in the joints. The Ayurvedic remedies offer to prevent further degeneration as well as restore the ability of the affected cartilage. Apart from encouraging the consumption of freshly cooked meals and drinks, the other useful Ayurvedic remedies are as follows:

  • An application of a mixture of dried ginger powder and hot mustard oil on the affected body joints might help to cure the pain.
  • Mix turmeric, camphor, garlic powder in hot sesame oil. Then apply it daily on the affected areas. This will not only provide relief from pain, but will also improve mobility.
  • Daily consumption of Triphala powder might help in the subsequent cure of osteoarthritis by purifying the colon.
  • Daily consumption of 30 ml herbal juice extracted from the Deodar tree roots, might cure osteoarthritis. You need to consume this preparation 2 to 3 times daily.
  • Daily massage with groundnut oil on the affected area may also reduce the symptoms of osteoarthritis.
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Osteoarthritis - 5 Effective Ways To Keep It At Bay!

Osteoarthritis - 5 Effective Ways To Keep It At Bay!

Osteoarthritis is among the most common ailments that people on the other side of 50 are affected with. Few of the primary reasons behind osteoarthritis are age, obesity and weakened bones. Sometimes, osteoarthritis stems from joint injury or some sort of stress on the bones. It leads to acute pain and stiffness and can only be cured through medication and exercise. The symptoms may vary from mild creakiness in the joints and swelling to the loss of cartilages between bones.

Long periods of inactivity can also trigger extreme stiffness as well. While it is an extremely painful disease, it does not spread to the other parts of the body. Inflammation of various degrees in the ligaments and joints is the primary cause of osteoarthritis and sustained treatment can only result in abating of pain. Osteoarthritis is usually treated through detecting the symptoms and through other imaging tests, while joint replacement may be a viable solution, there are other non-surgical processes that reap fruitful results while battling osteoarthritis.

It usually involves an optimum mixture of exercises and drug therapy. While there are several cures available, prevention should always be a priority:

  1. Physical activity: Obesity is one of the primary causes of osteoarthritis. Certain prescribed exercises can go a long way in improving muscle strength and reducing joint pains. However, excessive exercises must be avoided. Other preventive methods include medicinal spa, massage and chiropractics. These are extremely beneficial in cases osteoarthritis.
  2. Medicines and drugs: Osteoarthritis can be kept under control and averted through specific medications. Drugs can be consumed orally or can be injected directly as per the prescription of the doctor if he or she forebodes an onset of osteoarthritis. Knee lubricants have also been helpful in curing osteoarthritis. For more severe conditions, specified medical attention may be required.
  3. Nutritional Supplements: For obtaining relief from joint pains, a proper and healthy diet is necessary. An enhanced supply of calciumvitamin D and Omega-3 fatty acids is thus mandatory for remedying and preventing osteoarthritis. A healthy diet builds your immunity and prevents such diseases.
  4. SurgeryAlthough not the favorite, knee replacement surgery is often undertaken even if initial signs of osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis are detected. These are relatively hassle-free surgeries which go a long way in providing relief. However, you must follow the advice of the doctors thoroughly before opting for this.
  5. Acupuncture: Acupuncture has gained a lot of popularity in the recent times. Based on ancient techniques, this involves gently needling the various pressure points to purify the system from within and reduce the joint pains. They have extremely health boosting properties and contribute to one’s overall well-being.
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Osteoarthritis - How Ayurveda Can Help?

Osteoarthritis - How Ayurveda Can Help?

When it comes to things which have a pretty high ability to cause aches and pains, osteoarthritis can be said to be near the top of the list, for sure. But, what exactly is to be done so as to reduce the adverse impact that it has on the life and wellness of a person? Well, for questions such as this one, it is great that the ancient and proven field of medicine that is Ayurveda has all the answers that one would need to be aware of!

If a person is an enthusiast of food cooked in a south Asian or east Asian style, then turmeric is something which would be quite familiar, to say the least! In addition to just the food, turmeric can go a long way in the effort to help people who are suffering on account of osteoarthritis. Turmeric has an ability to work against three enzymes in the body which cause inflammation, which are lipo-oxygenase, cyclo-oxygenase, and phospholipase A2.

So, it can be said that this is one item from the kitchen, which is worth keeping in mind for its alternative uses. As a matter of fact, it is not, by far, the only one as ginger is another which is useful in the treatment of osteoarthritis. This is especially true when it is a case of osteoarthritis of the knee. How ginger helps is that it prevents an enzyme which creates inflammation from having the full effect that it normally would have had. So, the amount of pain which is felt by the person is quite a bit less a good thing, is it not?

An aspect of curing osteoarthritis has to do with the diet, as well. So, it is important that in order to avoid the osteoarthritis from getting worse, fried foods are avoided, especially the things which are spicy. In addition to this, it is a good idea to use lentil soups as these provide nutrition but at the same time also help to reduce a person’s tendency to eat too much. The weight loss will also help make movement a fair amount easier. Quite a combination of benefits!

For someone who is going through pain on account of osteoarthritis, it is important to be on a regular meditation. While a person would not see the link between the two from a normal perspective, it is to be kept in mind that Ayurveda looks to balance not only the body but also the mind. So, there can be a reduced sensation of pain if a person meditates, which will help him or her live life better.

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Osteoarthritis - Why Is Choosing Homeopathy A Good Option?

Osteoarthritis - Why Is Choosing Homeopathy A Good Option?

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a degenerative disease that affects the various bone and joints health, leading to painful movement and thereby limiting the patient's mobility.  Knees, hips, joints of hands and legs are affected.

Symptoms of OA

The symptoms revolve around the bones and joints including:

  1. Pain and stiffness of the joints
  2. Swelling of the joints
  3. Inability to form a clench
  4. Difficulty holding things 
  5. Stooped posture 
  6. Weakness of legs and hands
  7. Reduced height over time

Treatment options in allopathy are limited to nonsteroidal analgesics to control pain and in severe cases, surgical correction, in case of OA.  However, homeopathy takes into account the triggering symptoms, the associated symptoms, and the status of the immune system before deciding on a treatment regimen.

With this holistic approach, homeopathy achieve the following:

  1. Reduce the pain, swelling and stiffness
  2. Slows the pace of further degeneration
  3. Improves mobility of the affected joint(s)
  4. Improves the body's overall immune system, thereby allow the body to promote healing on its own
  5. Homeopathic intervention in the early phases is particularly helpful, as it will arrest disease progression
  6. It also enable better absorption of minerals and nutrients essential for bone health. This allows healing of existing bone fractures and avoids further bone damage by strengthening the bones
  7. Homeopathic treatment also enables the body's chemical state to withstand stress and illnesses better
  8. It vitalizes the body's natural healing and ability to repair itself, to create a better state of health and well-being

Some of the popular homeopathic medications based on areas and associated symptoms are listed below:

Knee joints:

  1. Bryonia Alba: Pain worsened with movement, relieved with rest; associated with swelling and stiffness of the joints; difficulty in climbing stairs.
  2. Calcarea Carbonica:  Swelling and pain that is worsened when getting up from a seated position. The joints feel cold and painful.
  3. Sulphur: Worse with climbing stairs, prolonged standing, feeling of warmth in the knees. 

Hip Joints:

  1. Colcynthis: Cramping pain improved by pressure.
  2. Rhus Toxicodendron: Pain when getting up from a seated position.
  3. Pulsatilla Nigricans: Associated with muscle stiffness and cramping.

Finger joints:

  1. Antimonium Crudum: The pain pain gets worse in cold weather, improved by applying something warm) 
  2. Benzoic Acid: There is an associated crackling sound when the fingers are moved or if there are nodes in the area of joints. . The urine is highly offensive in these people. 
  3. Calcara Fluorica:  There are stony hard nodes formed in the joint area, greatly reducing the mobility.

These medications are safe, completely natural, do not induce habit formation, and are approved by FDA. They don't just treat the symptoms but help manage the patient as a whole. This justifies why homeopathy is definitely a good option in treating osteoarthritis. These medicines can be consumed post getting directions from your physician as the dosages and potency can be decided post seeing the severity of the ailments.

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Knee Osteoarthritis - What Should You Know?

Knee Osteoarthritis - What Should You Know?

The cartilage is the natural cushioning between two joints. When it wears off, the bones rub uncomfortably against each other as there is no shock absorption. Pain, swelling, stiffness, difficulty in moving and sometimes, the formation of bone spurs are the results of the rubbing. This condition is called osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis in the knee is very common, and can even occur in younger people, though the risk of developing it rises after age 45.

Causes of Knee Osteoarthritis

1. Age: The cartilage doesn't heal as effectively as a person gets older.
2. Weight: The more the weight, the more the pressure on the knee.
3. Hereditary: Genetic mutations and inherited abnormalities like the shape of bones lead to osteoarthritis.
4. Gender: Women over the age of 55 are more susceptible to osteoarthritis than men.
5. Repetitive stress injuries: People like weightlifters and such, who kneel, squat or lift 55 pounds or more, are likely to develop osteoarthritis in the knee due to the constant pressure on their joints.
6. Athletics: Athletes who play soccer, tennis or other sports that involve long-distance running can develop osteoarthritis.
7. Other illnesses: People who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis, metabolic disorders like excess growth hormone or iron overload are at risk of developing osteoarthritis.

Symptoms of Knee Osteoarthritis

1. Feeling pain while moving but it gets a little better after resting
2. Swelling
3. Joints feel warm
4. Knee joints feeling stiff, especially after sitting for too long
5. Getting in and out of chairs, or going up and down a flight of stairs get difficult
6. Hearing a crackly sound whenever the knees move

Treatment for Knee Osteoarthritis

1. Weight loss: Even losing a small amount of weight will relieve stress from the joints.
2. Exercising: Strengthening the weak muscles around the joints through exercise makes it more stable and decreases the pain.
3. Pain relievers and anti-inflammatory drugs: Non-prescription drugs like acetaminophen, ibuprofen, or naproxen sodium can be taken to ease pain: But if problem persists, visit a doctor.
4. Injections of corticosteroids or hyaluronic acid into the knee: These are steroids that help with the inflammation.
5. Alternative therapies: Topical creams, supplements like glucosamine may be effective.
6. Physical and occupational therapy: Physical therapy strengthens muscles and increases flexibility in joints. Occupational therapy teaches how to do daily things, like housework, with less pain.
7. Surgery: If other treatments fail, surgery is a good option.

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Role Of Intra-Articular Injection For Knee Osteoarthritis!

Role Of Intra-Articular Injection For Knee Osteoarthritis!

According to the recent estimates of UK, almost half of over 50-year-olds experience knee pain on an annual basis. One of the most common causes of knee pain is Osteoarthritis (OA). Knee Osteoarthritis is also known as wear-and-tear arthritis. In this type of problem, the natural cushioning between the cartilage and joints gradually worn out. When this occurs, the bones of the joints rub firmly against each other resulting in loss of shock-absorbing ability of cartilage. This causes pain, stiffness, bone spurs, and affects the ability to move. This can occur due to various reasons like age, heredity, gender, repetitive stress injuries, or knee illnesses.

There are many treatments and physical therapy available to treat this condition and lower the pain of the knee. Physical therapy includes lifestyle changes, exercises, yoga, etc. Oral pharmacological strategies such as anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), simple analgesia, or dietary supplements may also help in relieving the pain. However, this may not be beneficial for every patient. This is why there are other options available to treat advanced or symptomatic Knee Osteoarthritis pain. This includes the intra-articular injections which are used to provide relief from chronic pain.

Intra-articular Injection for Knee Osteoarthritis

The role of intra-articular injections for Knee Osteoarthritis is to reduce pain and improve the knee function. Some of the most common intra-articular injections are:

Viscosupplementation

Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a type of glycosaminoglycan that naturally occurs in all synovial joints. It has several functions such as energy dissipation, shock absorption, and lubrication within the joints. It is a vital component and primarily responsible for the lubrication of synovial joints. It also has an anti-inflammatory effect. However, patients with Knee Osteoarthritis are deficient in hyaluronic acid.

Viscosupplementation reduces the deficiency of Hyaluronic acid. It is a procedure in which hyaluronate (a thick fluid) is introduced into the knee joint. This injection reduces the inflammation and pain, and increases the lubrication in the joint. For this process, patients required 3-5 injections per week.

Platelet-rich plasma (PRP)

Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections are used increasingly in recent years for the treatment of Knee Osteoarthritis. According to the study from the Hospital for Special Surgery, platelet-rich plasma (PRP) can successfully treat Knee Osteoarthritis. It reduces pain and improves the functioning of the knee joint.

Corticosteroids

Corticosteroids are a common intra-articular injection that provides relief from pain and inflammation of the knee joints. These injections have a wide range of anti-inflammatory properties that helps in limiting the symptoms of Osteoarthritis. There are a variety of corticosteroids options available to the doctors and they usually advise a particular type of corticosteroid based on the patient’s condition. Hydrocortisone, methylprednisolone, triamcinolone, and betamethasone are some of the most commonly used corticosteroids.

Take Away

There are several treatment options available for treating Knee Osteoarthritis. Some of them include Intra-articular Injection. However, it is advisable to consult an orthopedic doctor before going for any treatment.

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Osteoarthritis - Everything You Should Know!

Osteoarthritis - Everything You Should Know!

There are so many things we take for granted. For example, have you ever thought about how your fingers bend or how your knees open and fold to help you walk? It is only when these simple acts start becoming uncomfortable that we take a closer look at them. Osteoarthritis is a common musculoskeletal condition that affects the cartilage in our joints. As the cartilage breaks down, bones lose the buffer between them and every movement becomes stiff and painful.

Here are a few things you should know about osteoarthritis.

  1. Osteoarthritis is common: Osteoarthritis can affect both men and women but men have a higher risk of osteoarthritis as compared to women. This risk increases with age. Other risk factors associated with osteoarthritis include obesity, genetics, muscle weakness and previous joint injuries. The joints most commonly affected by osteoarthritis include the knees, hips, and spine. It is important to note that though this condition is common, it is not inevitable.
  2. You can reduce your risk of Osteoarthritis: By making a few lifestyle changes you can reduce the chances of suffering from this condition. Controlling your blood sugar and weight are primary amongst these. Regular exercise is also necessary as it increases flexibility and keeps the joints supple. It also strengthens the bones and muscles. If your work involves heavy lifting avoid placing stress on your knees and instead lift the weight with your hips.
  3. Different people have different symptoms: This condition has a very slow progression rate and hence may go unnoticed in its early stages. While some people experience pain in the early stages, others may not realize anything is amiss until an X-ray shows the degenerated cartilage. It also progresses at different rates for each individual. The condition will progress faster in the case of people living with heavy stress or those with a sedentary lifestyle. Some of the common symptoms associated with osteoarthritis include pain, stiffness, and swelling of the joints. Along with an X ray, blood tests will also be conducted to diagnose osteoarthritis. This helps rule out any other type of arthritis. In rare cases, osteoarthritis can cause joint deformities.
  4. Exercise is the best treatment for osteoarthritis: At present, there is no known cure for this disease. Medication can help relieve the pain caused by movement but cannot help stop the cartilage degeneration or help new cartilage grow. However, exercise can be very beneficial. This helps strengthen the muscles around the joint and can even slow down the rate of degeneration. Low-intensity exercises such as walking, swimming, yoga, and cycling are ideal for osteoarthritis patients as they do not put any pressure on the joints.
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All You Must Know About Osteoarthritis!

All You Must Know About Osteoarthritis!

There are so many things we take for granted. For example, have you ever thought about how your fingers bend or how your knees open and fold to help you walk? It is only when these simple acts start becoming uncomfortable that we take a closer look at them. Osteoarthritis is a common musculoskeletal condition that affects the cartilage in our joints. As the cartilage breaks down, bones lose the buffer between them and every movement becomes stiff and painful.

Here are a few things you should know about osteoarthritis.

  1. Osteoarthritis is common: Osteoarthritis can affect both men and women but men have a higher risk of osteoarthritis as compared to women. This risk increases with age. Other risk factors associated with osteoarthritis include obesity, genetics, muscle weakness and previous joint injuries. The joints most commonly affected by osteoarthritis include the knees, hips, and spine. It is important to note that though this condition is common, it is not inevitable.
     
  2. You can reduce your risk of Osteoarthritis: By making a few lifestyle changes you can reduce the chances of suffering from this condition. Controlling your blood sugar and weight are primary amongst these. Regular exercise is also necessary as it increases flexibility and keeps the joints supple. It also strengthens the bones and muscles. If your work involves heavy lifting avoid placing stress on your knees and instead lift the weight with your hips.
     
  3. Different people have different symptoms: This condition has a very slow progression rate and hence may go unnoticed in its early stages. While some people experience pain in the early stages, others may not realize anything is amiss until an X-ray shows the degenerated cartilage. It also progresses at different rates for each individual. The condition will progress faster in the case of people living with heavy stress or those with a sedentary lifestyle. Some of the common symptoms associated with osteoarthritis include pain, stiffness, and swelling of the joints. Along with an X-ray, blood tests will also be conducted to diagnose osteoarthritis. This helps rule out any other type of arthritis. In rare cases, osteoarthritis can cause joint deformities.
     
  4. Exercise is the best treatment for osteoarthritis: At present, there is no known cure for this disease. Medication can help relieve the pain caused by movement but cannot help stop the cartilage degeneration or help new cartilage grow. However, exercise can be very beneficial. This helps strengthen the muscles around the joint and can even slow down the rate of degeneration. Low-intensity exercises such as walking, swimming, yoga, and cycling are ideal for osteoarthritis patients as they do not put any pressure on the joints.
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Osteoarthritis - Symptoms And Treatment!

Osteoarthritis - Symptoms And Treatment!

The human body is able to move fluidly because there are various joints, muscles, tendons and cartilages that work together to make this happen. Movements of the hands, legs, back, hips, knees and wrists are controlled this way. For various reasons, however, these tissues grow stiff, thereby, reducing free movement. Any movement causes pain and stiffness and swelling of the joints, which forces the patient to reduce physical activity. This reduced activity further leads to the joints becoming stiff, thus putting the patient in a difficult position.

What causes it?

The ends of the bone are covered by softer tissue called cartilage, which is responsible for allowing the free movement. In patients with osteoarthritis, this cartilage is lost and the bones rub against each other, producing pain and a crackling sound with the movement. Some of the most common causes include the following:

  1. Age is the most common cause for osteoarthritis, with lifestyle habits playing a major role in this condition. Most joints would be affected here.
  2. Obesity is another major cause for osteoarthritis, as the additional weight of the person puts extra pressure on the knees and the legs, leading to the wearing of the joints. The back and lower extremities are more affected than the hands in this case.
  3. Joint injuries are another common cause for osteoarthritis, which is more localised to the area of injury.

What are the signs and symptoms?

As noted already, painful movement is the most common symptom of osteoarthritis. There could also be swelling and redness around the affected joint(s).
Diagnosis: The doctor will usually be able to identify osteoarthritis after an examination, but in some cases, an X-ray or MRI may be required to confirm the diagnosis.

Treatments available

The treatment for osteoarthritis is multipronged.

  1. For immediate relief of the pain, non-steroidal and anti-inflammatory drugs are used. In cases of localised symptoms, even topical creams or gels may be used.
  2. Weight loss is extremely essential, if there is obesity that is causing the osteoarthritis.
  3. Vitamins and supplements in good amounts can improve bone health and help in preventing and reversing the damage in some patients.
  4. Heat therapy has proven to be quite useful in many cases to provide temporary relief
  5. As much as the movement of the joints is painful for the patient, it is only with regular exercise that the joints can be made more flexible and mobile.
  6. The affected joints need to be specially cared for by avoiding injury and reducing unnecessary movements.
  7. Role of physiotherapy in the management of OA - Strengthening exercises, Taping, Manual therapy, Education/lifestyle changes,  Modalities, Agility and perturbation training.
  8. The definitive therapy of OA is joint replacement (total/partial knee/hip joint replacement).

In addition, support groups and counselling may also help significantly in patients who find their quality of life being reduced due to this condition. Remember, not all is lost with osteoarthritis. It is definitely possible to get your life back to its earlier days when you were able to move about freely.

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Homeopathy And Rheumatoid Arthritis Rehabilitation!

Homeopathy And Rheumatoid Arthritis Rehabilitation!
Rheumatoid arthritis is a heritable condition. True or false? Take this quiz to find out.
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