What Are the Benefits of Joint Fluid Therapy?
Osteoarthritis affects millions in the US, and its prevalence and severity increase with age. Symptoms include pain, swelling, inflammation, and stiffness in one or more joints. Arthritis of the knee and hip are particularly common, and can lead to serious impairment of quality of life and the ability to function in daily life. Osteoarthritis is caused by an injury or just general “wear and tear” that results in inflammation and damage to the cartilage in the affected joint. Many patients have experienced great results with Supartz® joint fluid therapy.
Treatments for osteoarthritis generally revolve around symptomatic relief. Pain medications and corticosteroid injections can offer significant relief. Weight loss, physical therapy, and oral supplements may provide relief to some individuals. When osteoarthritis is severe, a complete joint replacement may be indicated. However, most patients would prefer to put off or avoid major surgery. This is where a treatment like joint fluid therapy comes in.
Joint Fluid Therapy
Normally, joints are cushioned, lubricated, and able to move fluidly. These characteristics are due to the hard, slick cartilage that covers the ends of the bones, and also to the viscous synovial fluid that fills the joint and provides lubrication. During the arthritic process, the cartilage is damaged and inflammation results in thinning of the synovial fluid. The idea behind joint fluid therapy is to replenish the lubricating joint fluid.
What to Expect During Treatment
Natural synovial fluid is composed primarily of a substance called sodium hyaluronate, also referred to as hyaluronan. It is a thick, viscous substance. It can be manufactured artificially and injected directly into arthritic joints, replenishing the lubricating synovial fluid. The treatment usually consists of weekly injections for three to five weeks, repeated every six months. It is most commonly applied to the knees, but it has been used in other joints.
What Are the Benefits?
Those in the early stages of osteoarthritis generally report significantly reduced pain and stiffness after treatment. Patients with more advanced cases may notice less beneficial effect and may want to consider joint replacement instead. Many people begin joint fluid therapy when their condition first manifests and use it to delay the need for a joint replacement for as long as possible or manage to avoid one altogether. The use of joint fluid therapy can also allow many individuals to avoid using pain medications, which can have significant side effects such as gastrointestinal bleeding.
Learn More Today
There are no known side effects of joint fluid therapy. In general, this treatment is considered to be very safe. At Longevity Regenerative Institute, we can help you find out if this treatment is right for you. Contact our office in Oklahoma City to schedule your first appointment.