News for patients about bone and joint problems.

THURSDAY, July 30, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Knee replacement surgery can temporarily return the joint to an earlier, better level of function in patients with rheumatoid arthritis, new research suggests. The surgery "acts like a time machine" for these patients, said study senior author Kaleb Michaud, an associate professor of internal medicine in the division of rheumatology at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, in Omaha. "It's a very important treatment option, and our study is really about showing how their lives improved afterwards," Michaud said. Most studies of knee replacement surgery focus on patients with osteoarthritis, the "wear-and-tear" form of arthritis.

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THURSDAY, July 30, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- People with back pain that doesn't improve with treatment could have a rare type of spine infection, new guidelines suggest. The infection -- called vertebral osteomyelitis -- could lead to paralysis or death if it's not diagnosed and treated correctly. The condition is often overlooked because it causes back pain, a common problem typically caused by a pulled muscle or back injury, according to the guidelines published July 30 in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases. "Back pain is so common -- and usually not caused by infection -- that diagnosis often is missed or delayed," guidelines lead author Dr.

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TUESDAY, April 21, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Arthritis medications known as biologic disease-modifying drugs can cost Medicare patients more than $2,700 in co-payments a year, a new report finds. Researchers say the tab is an immense burden on patients with disabling conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, a chronic disorder that affects an estimated 1.3 million Americans. Biologic anti-rheumatic medications -- which include drugs such as adalimumab (Humira), anakinra (Kineret) and etanercept (Enbrel) -- have allowed patients to gain better control of rheumatoid arthritis when taken early in the course of disease, the researchers explained.

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THURSDAY, June 4, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Having arthritis and other chronic health conditions can often harm a person's social life and ability to work, a new study finds. About one in seven American adults has arthritis and at least one other chronic health problem, according to the study authors. The researchers found that having a number of chronic health conditions was linked to work disability, significant mental distress, and limitations on social activities. The negative effects were even greater if one of the chronic conditions was arthritis. Among adults with one chronic condition, those with arthritis were much more likely than those without arthritis to have work disability (16 percent versus 9 percent), according to Jin Qin and colleagues at the U.S.

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TUESDAY, April 7, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Physical therapy may be just as good as surgery for older adults with a type of chronic lower back pain, new research suggests. Standard treatments for lumbar spinal stenosis -- a painful, often disabling narrowing of the spinal canal -- are an operation known as surgical decompression or physical therapy. But physical therapy is much less invasive and less risky than surgery. "Adverse events from surgery range from 15 to 20 percent, with half of those being serious or life-threatening," said study author Anthony Delitto. Related MedlinePlus Pages Back Pain Rehabilitation Spinal Stenosis

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FRIDAY, May 22, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Many young athletes who undergo surgery for a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) need a second operation later on, a new study shows. Torn ACLs are widespread among people younger than 21, said researchers at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City. "This is the first study to evaluate, on a population level, the percentage of patients under age 21 who had subsequent ACL or non-ACL knee surgery following a primary anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction," lead investigator Dr. Emily Dodwell, a pediatric orthopedic surgeon, said in a hospital news release.

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It’s nearly baseball season and that means thousands of boys and girls will be hitting the field, bat and ball in hand. Shoulder and elbow injuries are common in baseball, especially among young pitchers. Now, a new study pinpoints 3 reasons they may be at risk. The researchers included 420 youth and adolescent pitchers… During pre-season training, they evaluated their performance using high-speed video analysis. They also collected information on their pitching and injury history. 31 percent of the participants reported a previous injury…30 percent reported current pitching-related pain. The data showed that pitching velocity, the pitcher’s height and playing for more than one team increased the likelihood of a history of injury.

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THURSDAY, April 23, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- As the most flexible joint in your body, your shoulder can move and position your arm in many ways. But this flexibility also makes it prone to instability and injury. Shoulder muscles, ligaments and tendons can be injured by sports, household chores and heavy lifting. These injuries sometimes take months to heal and can interfere with everyday tasks, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons says. In 2010, about 16 million Americans visited their doctor for a shoulder problem, and more than 2.7 million were diagnosed with sprains and strains of the shoulder and upper arm, according to the academy.

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TUESDAY, March 31, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Acetaminophen -- best known as Tylenol in the United States -- does not appear to help ease lower back pain and offers little relief for the most common form of arthritis, according to a new report. The review of data from 13 studies could challenge existing recommendations on pain relief, experts say. "These results support the reconsideration of recommendations to use [acetaminophen] for patients" with these conditions, concluded a team led by Gustavo Machado of The George Institute for Global Health at the University of Sydney in Australia. Related MedlinePlus Pages Back Pain Osteoarthritis Pain Relievers

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