Dr. James Ashford and his team at Ashford Pain Solutions in Athens, Georgia, specialize in interventional pain management for chronic, painful conditions like osteoarthritis. Dr. Ashford is a board-certified anesthesiologist who uses minimally invasive, nonsurgical treatments to address your pain at its source. You can rely on Dr. Ashford’s medical expertise and skill as a physician as well as his commitment to providing patient-focused care in a warm and welcoming environment. Schedule your visit today. Call the office or book your appointment online.
Osteoarthritis Q & A
What is osteoarthritis?
Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis in the United States. It can affect any joint, but typically develops in the hands, knees, hips, and spine and occurs when the cartilage that cushions the ends of bones in your joints gradually deteriorates. If the cartilage wears down completely, bone rubs against bone when you move the joint.
While it’s commonly referred to as a wear-and-tear condition that’s associated with aging, osteoarthritis can occur as the result of an injury or trauma associated with persistent overuse of a joint during work activities, sports, or household chores. Osteoarthritis also causes changes in the bones and connective tissues that hold a joint together and can cause inflammation and swelling of the tissue lining the affected joint (synovial membrane).
What are the symptoms of osteoarthritis?
Osteoarthritis causes symptoms that typically develop slowly and usually worsen over time, which may include:
- Pain in the affected joints during or after movement
- Joint stiffness that’s typically more noticeable upon waking
- Tenderness with light pressure to or near the joint
- Loss of flexibility or inability to move the joint through a full range of motion
- Grating sensation or audible popping or crackling in the joint with movement
- Swelling of the joint caused by soft tissue inflammation
What causes osteoarthritis?
Beyond changes associated with the aging process, factors that may increase your risk of developing osteoarthritis include:
- Obesity, which adds stress to weight-bearing joints
- Increased level of fatty tissue, which produces proteins that can lead to inflammation in and around your joints
- Joint injuries, even those that occurred many years ago and seemed to heal well
- Repeated stress on the joint, caused by job activities, sports, or household chores
What is the treatment for osteoarthritis?
Dr. Ashford designs customized treatment plans for each of his patients, which may include:
- Joint injections to deliver medication that reduces inflammation and pain
- Weight loss, nutritious diet, and lifestyle changes that may improve joint health
- Routine, joint-friendly exercise program that increases strength, flexibility, and overall stamina
- Medical massage therapy
If you’re one of the millions of Americans experiencing the debilitating effects of osteoarthritis, Dr. Ashford can help. Call the office today to schedule an appointment or book your visit online.