As baby boomers age, the frequency of chronic joint pain is growing. About 43 million people have sought out medical advice for the condition — and women account for 58 percent of these patients.
While it’s normal for our joints to wear our over the course of our lives, the rate of deterioration can depend on factors like trauma (tears/breaks), wear and tear, genetics and weight.
If you’re experiencing chronic joint pain the first step is to try some of the many non-operative options. These include: weight reduction, guided exercise, and physical therapy.
If these conservative measures are not effective at helping your pain, you can talk with an orthopaedic specialist about other non-operative options, like injections. Delivering medicine directly to the affected area, shots can provide pain relief and protect the joint for up to a year.
When to Consider Surgery for Joint Pain
If these non-surgical options don’t help, minimally invasive arthroscopic surgery to smooth the cartilage on the surface of the bone, remove loose chips of cartilage or repair torn cartilage (meniscus) may provide relief.
And, when nothing else is working, knee or hip replacement can be the answer. With advances like nerve blocks and anterior approach hip replacements, joint replacement surgery is becoming more popular – with a quicker recovery and return to activity. After surgery, most of our patients say that they wish they had done it long ago.
Our knee and hip replacement patients are usually walking again hours after their surgery and are home to rehabilitate by the third day. As an added bonus, most people who have joint replacements can now expect their implants to last 20 years or more.
Virginia Orthopaedic and Spine Specialists (VOSS), is a group of orthopaedic surgeons whose specialty interests include hip and knee replacement, knee arthroscopy and general orthopaedics as well as hand, foot and ankle, and spine surgeries. They see patients in Suffolk and Portsmouth, Virginia. To schedule an appointment with any of our surgeons, call 757.673.5680.