There are many forms of arthritis, including inflammatory conditions such as Rheumatoid arthritis, Psoriatic arthritis, & Reiter’s disease.
Most commonly however, the term ‘arthritis’ refers to the degenerative condition, known as osteoarthritis. It is basically a ‘wear-and-tear’ phenomenon, beginning with softening and thinning of the articular cartilage (the shock-absorbing cover over the bone). This type of arthritis can affect any joint in the body, but is most common in the spine, knees & hips. With current medical techniques, true degenerative arthritis cannot be cured. However many aspects of the disease are treatable. We can improve secondary pain, swelling, and stiffness. We can strengthen the related muscles, to take over some of the ‘shock-absorptive’ properties lost by the weakened cartilage. We also look for preventable factors contributing to the disease. For instance, poor muscle balance often leads to excessive torsion and stress on joints. This can cause or speed up the degenerative process. By modifying muscle performance, it is sometimes possible to slow progression of the disease.
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