Orthopedic News for Patients - Bone & Joint Pain

News for patients with orthopedic conditions & bone and joint pain.

April 2017 Print this issue Health Capsule Early Treatment for Rheumatoid Arthritis Is Key En españolThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. document.getElementById('cloak445a35024db0550b18598ad33c3fcfcd').innerHTML = ''; var prefix = 'ma' + 'il' + 'to'; var path = 'hr' + 'ef' + '='; var addy445a35024db0550b18598ad33c3fcfcd = 'nihnewsinhealth' + '@'; addy445a35024db0550b18598ad33c3fcfcd = addy445a35024db0550b18598ad33c3fcfcd + 'od' + '.' + 'nih' + '.' + 'gov'; var addy_text445a35024db0550b18598ad33c3fcfcd = 'Send us your comments';document.getElementById('cloak445a35024db0550b18598ad33c3fcfcd').innerHTML += ''+addy_text445a35024db0550b18598ad33c3fcfcd+''; Arthritis is an inflammationSwelling and irritation caused by the body’s protective response to injury. of the joints. There are over 100 types of arthritis. While their symptoms can be similar, their underlying causes vary.

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< PDF versions Many people with osteoarthritis have knee pain. They often try over-the-counter treatments to help the pain, and to avoid knee surgery. The supplements, glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate, are very popular. In 2012, Americans spent $813 million on these supplements, according to the Nutrition Business Journal. The knee pain is caused by the breakdown of the cartilage. This is the tough flexible tissue that covers the ends of the knee and other joints. Glucosamine and chondroitin are building blocks of cartilage. But they are not good for pain relief. Here’s why: These popular supplements don’t work. Many studies have shown that glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate do not help to relieve arthritic knees.

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WEDNESDAY, July 5, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Sending an electrical current directly into spinal nerves does no more than strength and mobility exercises for low back pain, a new study finds. The procedure, called radiofrequency denervation, has become an increasingly popular way to try to ease pain arising from joints in the spine, the researchers noted. But "our findings do not support the added value of radiofrequency denervation to a standardized exercise program," said study author Esther Maas, who conducted the investigation while at Vrije University in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. "Based on our results, a standardized exercise program alone has to be the first choice in the treatment of these patients," Maas said.

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SUNDAY, Sept. 3, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Backpacks can mean backaches for schoolchildren, but an orthopedic surgeon has advice for parents and kids about how to keep soreness at bay. "Parents should inspect their child's backpack from time to time," said Dr. Joshua Hyman of New York-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital in New York City. Kids "often carry much more than they should, with extra shoes, toys, electronic devices and other unnecessary items," he explained in a hospital news release. Hyman suggests that before sending kids off to school, parents should follow these backpack safety tips:Be a weight-watcher.

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WEDNESDAY, June 21, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with low back pain who are depressed are more likely to be prescribed opioids, and to be prescribed higher doses, a new study finds. Low back pain is a leading cause of disability in the United States and the most common reason for opioid prescriptions, the researchers said. "There is strong evidence that depressed patients are at greater risk for misuse and overdose of opioids," said study senior author Dr. John Markman. He directs the University of Rochester Medical Center's Translational Pain Research Program, in New York.

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THURSDAY, Aug. 24, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- How well you cope with knee arthritis depends a lot on your mental outlook, a new study suggests. Despite often-debilitating pain, people who remain confident in their ability to move about end up more active than their less confident peers, researchers found. Studies have shown that physical activity may be one of the best ways to reduce and manage symptoms of osteoarthritis. The Pennsylvania State University study was based on 135 adults with knee arthritis. "On days when patients felt more confident in their ability to be active, they indeed took more steps and spent more time in moderate-intensity activity, despite their level of pain that day," said study lead author Ruixue Zhaoyang.

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MONDAY, June 19, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- If you suffer from chronic low back pain, yoga might bring you as much relief as physical therapy, a new trial shows. The less positive finding: Both therapies fell far short of helping everyone. People who did yoga or physical therapy reported less pain on average after 12 weeks -- an improvement that held up over a year. And some were able to cut out pain medication. Still, many failed to get meaningful relief, the researchers noted. Experts said the findings reflect the reality of chronic low back pain: No single treatment has proven widely effective.

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WEDNESDAY, Aug. 16, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Alternative drug-free interventions to manage pain, including acupuncture and electrotherapy, may help reduce the need for prescription painkillers after knee replacement surgery, a new review suggests. "As prescription opioid use is under national scrutiny and because surgery has been identified as an avenue for addiction, it is important to recognize effective alternatives to standard pharmacological therapy, which remains the first option for treatment," the study team wrote. The finding stems from an in-depth look at 39 already-completed studies. These studies included nearly 2,400 total knee replacement patients. The studies looked at a number of different alternative treatments, including acupuncture and electrotherapy (the use of electrical energy to stimulate nerves and muscles).

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FRIDAY, June 2, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Patients deciding whether to have a double knee replacement must carefully consider the pros and cons, an orthopedic surgeon says. "Many people want to have a double knee replacement because they feel they can get it over with faster since there's one surgery, one hospital stay and one course of rehabilitation," said Dr. Geoffrey Westrich. Called a "bilateral procedure," double knee replacement enables people with severely arthritic knees to get back to their normal lives faster, "and for the right patient, it's a good option," said Westrich.

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