What You Need To Know About Joint Conditions
Joints are basically the points at which two or more bones are joined and can either be rigid or movable. For instance, the joints between the bones in the skull are rigid meaning they cannot move while joints that make up the knees, shoulders and hips are movable.
Cartilage is the soft and flexible tissue that connects the bones that form joints allowing the bones to glide over each other preventing friction that would otherwise make movement difficult.
This article seeks to help you get a better understanding of joints conditions, what causes them, how they can be treated and what you can do to prevent yourself from experiencing these conditions.
Signs and symptoms of Joint Conditions
Joint conditions may be difficult to realize until you start experiencing some of the signs below which include:
- Pain in the joints
- Stiffness of joints
- Weakness of the joints
- Joints Tenderness
- Swelling of the joints
- Redness of the joints
Causes of Joint Conditions
Joints conditions can be caused by several factors including:
- Eating unhealthy diet rich in sugars and fats and processed meat can lead to joint problems
- Smoking can also lead to a number of health issues which in turn lead to joint problems
- Obesity: Having excess weight can lead to having joint problems especially those of the knees
- Injuries of the joints: Damage to the joints can lead to conditions like osteoarthritis
- Occupation: Some jobs can lead to one getting joint problems after a while, for example, jobs that involve doing a lot of lifting of heavy loads, bending of knees or even standing for long hours
- Infection: Some bacterial infections can lead to joints conditions such as septic arthritis, due to cartilage deterioration and damage to the bones
There are factors that increase the risk of getting joint problems and these include:
- Age: As one grows older, their risk of getting joint problems increases
- Genetics: There are specific genes that are related to high risk of joint conditions such as arthritis
Diagnosis of Joint Conditions
An initial consultation with a doctor is the first step to diagnosing what joint problem you have. A doctor or specialist will get to understand your symptoms by asking questions such as how long you have had the symptoms, whether your family has a history of joint problems, whether you are on medication and others that will help in the diagnosis.
The doctor will then carry out a physical exam to check for; the source of any pain you might be experiencing, evaluate the affected area, joint stability and range of motion, etc.
After the examination, other tests may be carried out if the doctor wants to confirm exactly what you are suffering from. These tests include:
- Lab tests to check your blood, urine or fluid extracted from the affected joint
- Imaging tests through x- rays to enable the doctor to view the inside of the body and determine the damage to the joints
The treatment of joint conditions depends on which condition you have and its extent. Some of the treatments for joint conditions include:
- Joint Replacement Surgeries for the shoulder, hip, knee, elbow, wrist and ankle
These surgeries are aimed at replacing part or the entire joint in the above parts. They can either be done using open surgery or minimally- invasive surgery that allows for faster recovery time, less pain and damage to tissue as compared to open surgery.
- Bone Tumour Treatment
This treatment is done when a person has bone cancer and involves removal of the affected part of the bone. After this, reconstruction to replace the missing part using prosthesis or implants is done. Plastic surgery to cover the part that has been operated on with muscle and soft tissue so as to improve the appearance can also be done.
- Geriatric Orthopaedics
This involves the treatment of broken bones. The Zimmer Motion Loc is a new implant that is being used in this treatment providing faster and stronger healing.
- Paediatric Orthopaedics
It is treatment done to correct limb or spinal deformities in children using surgical or non- surgical procedures such as the Ilizarov apparatus and back braces respectively.
Prevention of Joint Conditions
Most people view joint conditions to only affect old people, however, anyone can get joint problems especially due to lifestyle. Here are some things you can do to keep those joint issues away and remain healthy:
- Maintain a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetable and less fats and sugars
- Ensure you maintain a healthy weight
- Exercise regularly
- Do not smoke
- Avoid excessive intake of alcohol
- Practice good habits for example when sitting, doing daily chores, etc.
- Have regular check ups especially if you are at a high risk of getting joint conditions
- Getting treatment for diseases that can lead to joint conditions such as arthritis
- Wear protective gear when doing vigorous activities like playing hockey to avoid hurting your joints
Treating joint conditions in their early stages is less costly and more likely to be successful.
How IMT can help
We, at International Medical Treatment (IMT), are experienced facilitators who can link you with the best orthopaedists in our partner hospitals in India, Dubai and Thailand.
We are here to help. By using IMT you will be assured of the following:
You will get a free, dedicated client coordinator who will help you coordinate with our partner hospitals to provide you, for free, with treatment plans and quotes to allow you to make an informed decision about which hospital and treatment is right for you.
All our partner hospitals are internationally accredited (JCI) and are the top hospitals in each country. We only work with the market leading hospitals.
If you arrange things through us you will never pay more than if you were to contact the hospitals directly.
No hidden fees, no obligations- receive a free, dedicated coordinator from IMT to help coordinate and book your international medical treatment.
Find Out More
To find out more about IMT and the services available visit our website at www.intmedicaltreatment.com or call us today on +254 0740 409 727. You can also visit our office at The Mirage, 1st Floor, Tower 2, Chiromo, Westlands, Nairobi, Kenya.