Tuesday, 13 November 2018

Mission to triumph over Arthritis

12 October 2018 | News | By Dr Mitta Ashwin Kumar

The primary goal in the treatment for Arthritis is arresting or slowing the progress of Joint damage.

Image Credit: Arthritis National Research Foundation

Image Credit: Arthritis National Research Foundation

Arthritis is very common but the condition is not really understood. There are more than 100 forms of arthritis and those which occur commonly are rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, psoriatic arthritis, etc. The different kinds of Arthritis are: Degenerative Arthritis (Age related and Injury related), Inflammatory Arthritis, Infectious Arthritis, Metabolic Arthritis (Disease related)”

Arthritis is accompanied by some common symptoms like pain in the joints, stiffness, swelling, decreased range of motion, difficulty in moving the limbs, fatigue, poor sleep, muscle weakness, malaise.

The primary goal in the treatment for Arthritis is arresting or slowing the progress of Joint damage. I advise people to consult for any persisting joint related pains even after using over the counter pain relieving medication for few days.The treatment should be initiated as early as possible for good outcome and preserve joint mobility.

For arthritis related to age (degenerative arthritis) mainstay of treatment is

  1. Life style modifications (avoiding overuse and overloading of affected joints)
  2. Physiotherapy (muscle and joint strengthening exercise)
  3. External supports (Braces and splints )
  4. Medications (which improve Joint mobility)

If the arthritis follows after any injury (Traumatic arthritis), it should be diagnosed early with necessary scans like CT and MRI and further progression can be arrested by early management of injury. In Disease related arthritis like Rheumatoid arthritis, Psoriatic arthritis, Gouty arthritis etc. a multidisciplinary approach involving usage of appropriate drugs, physiotherapy support usage of splints etc. is needed.

Despite doing all the above treatment modalities, if the arthritis is progressing, surgery is the treatment . Various types of surgeries like Joint Replacement surgery (knee, hip, ankle, shoulder etc.), Arthroscopy of Joints, Arthrodesis of Joints (giving fixed, pain free joint) will be considered. The type of surgery will be based on type and stage of arthritis and physical activity of the patients.

- Dr Mitta Ashwin Kumar, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon,Aware Gleneagles Global Hospitals, L B Nagar

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