The most common kind of arthritis is osteoarthritis, which occurs when the cartilage between the joints starts to break down; this causes pain, stiffness, swelling, limited range of motion, and clicking or cracking when the joint is engaged. Without treatment, these symptoms can worsen over time. Depending on the type of arthritis you have, you may be referred to an orthopedist. Here are some of the things an orthopedic doctor can treat the arthritic symptoms that impact your musculoskeletal system.
Pain Management Injections
Corticosteroids injections are a form of pain management that is effective at reducing the inflammation that causes joint pain. They do this by mimicking the natural hormones that your body releases when responding to stress. Corticosteroids injections are excellent at relieving pain but serve only as a temporary solution; depending on your condition and level of activity they do offer relief but do not address the root cause of the joint pain.
Sports medicine specialists are experts when it comes to consulting and treating about prevention, physical therapy plans and long-term treatment beyond surgery when it comes to sports-related injuries and conditions. Sports medicine orthopedists can help you map a course of treatment for treating arthritic pain and symptoms, and can help you assess your condition with diagnostic tools like MRIs. For many athletes with arthritis, especially those with osteoarthritis, their sports medicine doctor is as important in their training regime as their coach, trainers, and physical therapist.
Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy
The platelets in your blood are responsible for clotting when you get cut or are injured, but they also contain properties to help in the healing process. With platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy, your doctor will draw your blood, then use a centrifuge to isolate the healing factors. Your doctor will then inject this extract from your own body back into the area where healing is needed. In the case of arthritis, it could be any joint, particularly in the hips and knees; PRP can also be used to treat tendonitis, ligament injuries, and joint sprains.
Stem Cell Therapy
Stem cells are the raw materials from which every cell in our body evolves, making them especially powerful as they can generate to become any specialized cell in the body. Once your doctor has extracted your stem cells, they can be processed and then injected into the affected joints. These injections can help repair joints, reduce inflammation, increase muscle mass, and even fight autoimmune disease, making them especially valuable when treating osteoarthritis.
Physical therapy is rehabilitative care that is used to restore physical abilities by improving strength, mobility, flexibility, coordination, balance and endurance. For those with arthritis, expect your physical therapist to be a valued member of your treatment team, working closely with your orthopedist to ensure that your joints stay strong and can sustain mobility.
If conservative treatment methods fail, an orthopedic surgeon can replace joints damaged by arthritis. For hip, knee, and shoulder joints affected by arthritis, an orthopedic surgeon can perform minimally invasive joint replacements that will help you recover faster and experience less pain than you would with traditional replacement procedures.
Orthopedic Doctor for Arthritis in Little Rock
At Bowen Hefley Orthopedics, our team of board-certified orthopedists and physician assistants are committed to providing world-class care to help you live pain free. If your arthritis is affecting your quality of life, know that you don’t have to live with it any longer. Call Bowen Hefley Orthopedics at (800) 336-2412 to schedule an appointment or use our online request form. With four convenient locations around Little Rock, there is an office near you.