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OSTEOARTHRITIS

Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint condition characterized by the gradual breakdown of protective cartilage between bones, leading to joint pain, stiffness, and reduced mobility. It commonly affects weight-bearing joints and develops due to factors like age, genetics, and joint wear and tear.

Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint condition characterized by the gradual breakdown of protective cartilage between bones, leading to joint pain, stiffness, and reduced mobility. It commonly affects weight-bearing joints and develops due to factors like age, genetics, and joint wear and tear.

 

For people desiring reduced pain and swelling, increased range of motion, and healthier joints, achieving these goals goes beyond relying solely on medication. At the FMI Center For Optimal Health, our very own Dr. David Musnick MD has developed an integrative approach to comprehensively tackling Osteoarthritis in any joint of the body. He has contributed a chapter on Osteoarthritis to the book "Metabolic Orthopedics," published in 2018. 

 

Commonly, patients are advised to take nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) along with physical therapy to combat Osteoarthritis. However, this approach has drawbacks. NSAIDs can lead to severe side effects in the kidneys, stomach, and intestines. Furthermore, they fail to address many of the underlying inflammatory processes associated with OA. Osteoarthritis involves a range of factors, including:

  • Reduction in the number of healthy chondrocyte cells and deterioration of the matrix surrounding them.

  • Poor quality of synovial fluid, making it less effective.

  • Breakdown of cartilage cells due to enzyme activity.

  • Inflammation triggered by interleukins and other agents.

  • Calcification and growth of bony spurs.

  • Possible decrease in joint flexibility.

  • Diminished signaling for joint repair.

  • Altered biomechanics and loose ligaments.

  • Bone-related changes like edema, cysts, or decreased density.

 

Addressing all these factors is crucial, and it can be achieved with a thorough examination of your medical history and a comprehensive physical assessment. If you have X-rays, they will be assessed to gauge the extent of OA. Taking a Functional Medicine approach involves examining your diet, exposure to toxins, foundational supplements, and exercise routine. You'll also receive information about homeopathic and compounded medications to alleviate symptoms and support healing.

Options for various modalities will be presented, including Frequency Specific Microcurrent (FSM) to reduce inflammation and bone edema, and Pulsed Electromagnetic Field Treatment to encourage regeneration. During a consult,  a discussion on suitable exercise routines for joint health will take place including the potential benefits of Regenerative injections like Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP), bone marrow aspirate, or Prolotherapy for joint healing. Advice on the appropriateness of cortisone or Hyaluronic Acid injections, as well as potential surgical options, will also be provided. It all begins with a comprehensive evaluation to help you understand your choices!

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