Did you know there are more than 100 different types of arthritis and related conditions?
Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of arthritis and is also known as degenerative arthritis or degenerative joint disease. Osteoarthritis is a result of “wear and tear” on the joint overtime, causing the protective cartilage that provides cushion at the ends of your bones to wear down, and commonly affects the joints of the hands, knees, hips, and spine. This often results in pain, stiffness, and decreased range of motion at the joint. Arthritis symptoms may remain the same, but often progress with time, resulting in chronic pain, inability to do daily activities, and even joint deformity.
Inflammatory arthritis is the result of an overactive immune system, causing inflammation of the joints. Common types of inflammatory arthritis include rheumatoid arthritis (RA), psoriatic arthritis, and even gout, just to name a few. Unlike OA, which is caused by physical wear and tear, inflammatory arthritis is an autoimmune disorder, and is the result of a pathological misfiring of immune cells attacking healthy tissue and causing inflammation at the joint. Symptoms include joint pain and stiffness, swelling, redness, warmth at joints, weakness, and fatigue. Unlike OA, inflammatory arthritis conditions often affect multiple joints at once, tend to be symmetrical in nature (affecting both sides of the body), and symptoms can fluctuate in severity, known as “flares.” According to a 2009 study conducted by the Outcome Measures in Rheumatology Clinical Trials (OMERACT) RA Flare Group, the danger of untreated RA flares is they can place you at greater risk of joint damage, poorer long-term outcomes, and even contribute to worsening cardiovascular disease. Because of this, it’s important to listen to your body and be able to identify a flare when it starts and begin early interventions.
While both forms of arthritis vary in their onset, both are manageable with physical activity, lifestyle modification, and pain management interventions. At Monmouth Pain, our comprehensive team is well equipped in treating all your needs. Monmouth Pain’s number one objective is to provide pain management strategies that allow patients to rehabilitate without excessive drug use or unnecessary surgery. Because of that, our pain management doctors offer an abundance of less invasive treatment options, from steroid injections to viscosupplementation, and more. In addition to our pain management team, our physical therapists are skilled in various techniques and approaches, which are all tailored to your comfort. Our physical and occupational therapists are here to assist in regaining range of motion and strength, as well as educate you on joint protection techniques and environmental modifications to make daily tasks easier and pain free. In addition to therapy, our acupuncture team plays a critical role in helping you navigate your symptoms and manage pain.
If you have arthritis or are struggling with pain, please stop in to one of our offices and let us develop a customized plan that is comfortable for you!