Arthritis is an inflammatory joint pain that worsens with time if left untreated. Devastating outcomes of the respective disease include deterioration of bone, weakening it to an extent that leads to degeneration. It hinders physical activities and in extreme conditions causes an inability to move. Arthritis most frequently stabs feet, knees, hips, hands, and lower back. Naming few, Osteoarthritis, Ankylosing spondylitis, juvenile arthritis, gout, psoriatic arthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis are some of the common faces of arthritis we are familiar with.
An orthopedist looks for stiffness, tenderness, redness, swelling, and warmth over the affected joint. He may ask certain questions pondering the routine activities of the patient as a part of the examination to assess the cause of the disease. Certain imaging and blood tests are prescribed for evaluation. Blood tests help determine infection and uric acid levels that may be a cause of arthritis whereas imaging tests expose the damage that occurs to joints. Treatment for the disease varies as per the patient’s condition. Checking the severity of its attack orthopedist may opt for medicinal treatment accompanied by physical therapy and therapeutic injections for a cure. Matters, where an issue doesn’t solve with mentioned options bone fusion or joint replacement, has opted for improvement. Bone graft initiates the fusing process and immobilizes joints by fusing two bones forming a single solid body permanently. Joint replacement involves the removal of a diseased joint and insertion of the prosthetic joint in its place that imitates the motion of the natural joint.
Inflammation caused to the bursa is termed bursitis. Bursa is a sac filled with fluid that cushions the tissues of the body by reducing friction and preventing abrasive tears. Important points of their presence are tendons near the shoulder, hip, elbow, and knee joints. Bursitis doesn’t last long, it does not cause deformity but limits the range of motion. Repetitive actions, injury, overuse, and infection can give way to bursitis. It can also be associated with hitches like thyroid disease, arthritis, diabetes, gout, and tendonitis.
Symptoms observed are pain, tenderness in the affected area, limited range of motion, swelling, and redness can be seen if the bursa is close to the skin surface. Seek the help of an orthopedist for immediate relief.
Useful examination and assessments are conducted by an orthopedist for evaluation. X-ray, MRI, and ultrasound is a few imaging tests patients go through for internal diagnoses. To detect infection prevalence blood tests are recommended and an aspiration procedure is commenced wherein the needle is used to remove a fluid sample from the swollen bursa. The fluid is tested in the lab to check if the infection exists. After diagnostic tests, treatment is provided depending on the severity of the issue. For bursitis which is not infected and occurs due to soft tissue trauma or any other injury, medications are provided along with advice to rest. The swollen area is compressed using an elastic bandage and the joint is immobilized so inflammation doesn’t exuberate. In cases where there is a bacterial infection in the bursa aspiration method is used repeatedly to remove the fluid. In severe conditions, bursectomy is carried out for draining and removing the bursa. It’s an arthroscopic method to remove the affected bursa through a small incision which guarantees quick recovery. The patient is discharged from the hospital a few hours after surgery.
Dislocation is a kind of bone deformity in reaction to forceful impact. With dislocation, bone is subject to displacement from its normal position inducing pain and restraining movement. Fingers and shoulder joints are a common site for this ailment whereas knees, elbows, and hips are also liable to this disorder. The patient suffers extreme pain with discoloration, swelling, and immobility. It’s better to seek the abrupt assistance of a doctor for timely treatment.
Associated soft tissues also damage in the event which needs to be addressed equally for complete treatment. Physical and imaging examinations help assess the severity of the matter. Through physical inspection, doctors look for deformities and try to press dislocated bone back in its natural position through skillful manipulation. X-rays and MRI are recommended for internal diagnosis to see for soft tissue damages and any fracture to the bone. Once dislocated bone is back in position the joint is restricted to move through a plaster cast, splint or brace unless damaged nerves, blood vessels, and soft tissues heal.
In some cases, the surgeon is unable to reposition the bone or damages to nerves, blood vessels and ligaments need treatment to heal, here surgery fits best. The affected area is cut open to relocating bone and damaged ligaments are treated for strength. Surgery is a good move for patients with recurring bone dislocation. Sometimes the whole joint is replaced for better fixation of bone. Whether it is an external or surgical procedure, in both cases doctors prefer localized anesthesia considering the sternness of the prevalent condition.
Any part of the body can be subject to joint pain most commonly the hand, knee, hip, feet, and spine experiencing this sort of ailment. Reasons are many as it may initiate due to overweight body, growing age, repetitive or overuse of joints, diseases like arthritis, and an injury. Joint pain may remain constant or hit at regular intervals. People suffering from joint pain are seen with a disability to pursue activities as a healthy person does. With good care and proper treatment, painful joints can be managed. At home, it is advised to apply warm or cold compresses to feel better and exercise the affected joints to gain strength. If the condition persists, consult an orthopedist for help who may provide oral medication to relieve pain. Your doctor will prescribe painkilling ointments or gel to apply topically for instant relief or immobilize the joint for a short period with a brace, splint, or cast. Every patient has a different approach to the treatment provided. Do as directed by the doctor as the method that works for one person may not prove effective for another.
The treatment plan depends on the condition prevailing, in a severe condition where mentioned methods are of no advantage surgery becomes the ultimate decision to ease the pain. Surgical procedures comprise cartilage repair through arthroscopy where the operation is conducted through a small incision by inserting an arthroscope. Crucial joint pain leads to replacement surgery wherein defected joint is removed and replaced with a prosthetic one made up of metal, plastic or ceramic material. The method proves fruitful in relieving pain in long term.
Joint swelling or inflammation
Inflammation is a natural phenomenon that ensues in response to an injury or infection in a joint. The body’s immune system tries to fight off harmful attackers to cease the progression of infection, swelling appears in reaction. Common symptoms experienced are pain, redness, stiffness, warmth, and swelling over the joint. The contours of the joint disfigure and it appears bigger. Joint swelling and inflammation may affect a single joint in response to injury or multiple joints can also be affected due to certain inflammatory diseases or infections.
Mostly this issue disappears on its own with proper care but some inflammations need medical attention to be sorted. Mild ones vanish after rest where the joint is immobilized, elevated, and compressed with an elastic bandage. Under severe conditions when inflammation triggers pain accompanied by fever and disturbed locomotion, a patient needs to consult an orthopedist to prevent ruthless conditions ahead. Treatment begins with diagnosis through certain imaging and blood tests. A joint aspiration test is also conducted if the cause is unknown. This helps to check for the reason behind infection as the sample is tested in the laboratory for evaluation. With all test results in front, the medical practitioner adopts the best-fitted treatment plan. Anti-inflammatory drugs are given along with therapeutic injections at the joint for quick relief. Physical therapy goes side by side to improve blood circulation and strengthen joints. Surgery may be commenced for internal repairs and in worse conditions, joint replacement becomes the last help to vanish symptoms.
Ligaments are the linking components between two bones or bone to cartilage. It is a tough band of tissues, fibrous in build. The strong force, fall, or high impact on the joint could be a reason for its tear. A popping sound is heard or felt at the instance of damage and visible symptoms like pain, swelling, bruises, and tenderness arise. Ligaments ensure alignment of bone, prevent a typical movement, are supportive bodies, and provide strength to joints. Damage to ligaments loosens up joints interrupting normal range of motion. Common tears occur to the thumb, neck, back, knee, wrist, and ankle. Physical examination to look for prominent symptoms is the first step in the checkup. The doctor moves the joint in a certain direction to see the extent of the damage. Internal visual is taken by X-rays or MRI which disclose the injury to bone and related soft tissues including ligaments.
Rest through immobilization of the joint is the immediate step taken tailed by cold presses, compression with an elastic bandage, and elevating the joint to restrain swelling. Certain anti-inflammatory and painkiller medicines are included in treatment for relief. Once swelling and pain subside physical therapy is provided for strength. Surgery is implemented where no development is observed through non-surgical methods. The torn ligament is sewn back and held in its position using surgical pins, screws, or plates. In more crucial conditions tendon graft is installed to provide a ground for ligament reconstruction. The Joint is immobilized externally until heals properly. The entire process is made with the patient under the impact of either localized or general anesthesia depending on the state of the patient.