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Is Arthritis Reversible?

Joint pain can stem from numerous causes, and finding the right treatment plan is essential. Once your joints are damaged due to arthritis, we can’t make them whole again. However, finding the most appropriate and effective treatment can slow the disease down and prevent additional damage.

The specialists at Mid-Jersey Orthopaedics want you to live a healthy, active life and enjoy health that allows you to do the things you need to do and the things you enjoy doing. Whether you need to get through a shift at work on your feet or you want to play with your grandchildren, we want you to have arthritis treatment that makes it possible. 

Arthritis is many conditions

Arthritis isn’t a single disease. More than 100 different conditions that affect the joints fall under the umbrella of arthritis. Around 60 million people in the United States are diagnosed with some form of arthritis.

The most common type of arthritis is osteoarthritis, referred to as wear-and-tear arthritis. It affects older adults and accounts for about half of all cases of arthritis. 

Osteoarthritis develops over time, though it may be worse following an injury. Athletes and people with physically demanding jobs have a slightly higher risk of joint damage. 

When the cartilage that cushions your joints begins to deteriorate, you experience the stiffness, swelling, and joint pain associated with osteoarthritis. Without the cartilage, the bones of your joints can rub against each other, causing inflammation.

Another common type of arthritis is rheumatoid arthritis, an autoimmune condition. Your immune system mistakenly attacks the lining of your joints, causing swelling, tenderness, inflammation, and pain. Most of the time, people with rheumatoid arthritis have flare-ups instead of constant, worsening pain. 

Gout is also a form of arthritis. It happens when uric acid crystals form in your joints and behave like a piece of sand or glass that irritates your joints. Most of the time, the joint of the big toes is affected when you have gout. 

There is no cure

Arthritis can’t be treated and reversed in the same way that conditions such as prediabetes or gingivitis can be. Once your joints are damaged due to arthritis, it can’t be undone.

Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, the two most common diseases of the joints, are progressive, meaning they worsen as time goes by. However, we can help you manage your symptoms and slow the course of the disease. 

Treatments for arthritis

Although we can’t reverse arthritis, we can provide treatments that help. You may need to see a specialist if you notice swelling, stiffness, or joint pain or feel you have less range of motion.

Our providers provide a thorough exam, including questions about your symptoms and diagnostic testing to learn the cause of your joint pain. We then create a treatment plan based on your unique situation. Your play may include: 

Surgical procedures like joint replacement may be the best course of action in some instances.

If you’d like to learn more about how we can help you manage arthritis symptoms, schedule an appointment today at one of our convenient Mid-Jersey Orthopaedics locations in Flemington, Bridgewater, or Washington, New Jersey.

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