Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Arthritis "Treatments" to Avoid

Advertisements for treatments claiming to cure or slow down arthritis can be found on the Internet, on television and in print ads. They include drinks, certain supplements and rubs. Most are a a waste of money. 

The ads target people in pain who want to avoid surgery. The problem is, the longer people wait, the worse their arthritis can get. In the beginning, even if these bogus remedies provide a false sense of security, people are actually worse off because they are not receiving the proper care.

The bottom line is that patients should be wary of any advertisement for a product claiming to cure arthritis.

Supplements such as glucasomine and chondroitin, more in the mainstream, are also purported to slow the progression of arthritis. However, in 2013, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons added these supplements to the list of treatments that provide little benefit.

Knee lavage or “washing out the knee” has also received a thumbs down from the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. The procedure has not demonstrated any benefit and should not be performed to relieve arthritis. People should be wary if a doctor recommends it.

Another useless “treatment” for arthritis is arthroscopic surgery, with tiny incisions and supposedly a quick recovery.  Although certainly much easier than joint replacement for both the patient -- and the surgeon performing the procedure -- studies show, and we know from experience, that arthroscopic surgery is of no benefit for arthritis and can actually make the pain worse. 

Arthroscopic surgery may be considered to fix a torn meniscus cartilage that is causing symptoms, such as locking or catching in the joint, that physical therapy has not helped. But for someone with arthritis, an arthroscopic procedure is of no benefit.

And not only is it useless, it often makes the condition worse. Every surgery carries some element of risk, so don’t be fooled by the words “minimally invasive.” Countless arthritis patients have come to me after arthroscopic surgery exacerbated their knee pain. One patient developed severe swelling and fluid in her knee after arthroscopy and needed to go back to the doctor every week to have it taken out with a needle, a very uncomfortable procedure.

Surgery is surgery, and all operations have risks and benefits. If an orthopedic surgeon tells you arthroscopic surgery will relieve arthritis pain or buy you time, find another doctor. In fact, if you’re ever unhappy with a doctor, go elsewhere. And it never hurts to get a second opinion, especially when surgery is being considered.

The only tried and true treatment for advanced bone-on-bone arthritis that's causing severe pain is joint replacement. Sometimes, if the arthritis is limited to just one area of the knee, we can do a partial joint replacement, and this is usually easier on the patient. The recovery is generally faster; plus, we preserve more bone.

It’s important to get the proper diagnosis sooner, rather than later. If people wait too long, the joint continues to deteriorate, and a partial knee replacement may no longer be an option. At that point, a total joint replacement will be necessary to relieve pain and restore mobility.©

© 2016 Geoffrey Westrich, MD. All rights reserved.  


  1. Hello,
    I am so happy with your blog site,Thanks for sharing the article.

    achilles' tendon singapore

  2. A natural arthritis treatment is something that many people use in order to live with the condition of rheumatoid arthritis. If you are experiencing any type of pain, due to the chronic condition of arthritis, you may want to find out more about natural treatment options, instead of taking an array of prescription pills each day.

    An HTO (Hight Tibial Osteotomy)Surgery: is a surgical orthopedic procedure performed in the knee correct damage caused by osteoarthritis (the most common form of arthritis that affects millions of people) or a physical deformity due to genetic (such as bowed legged) or injury. A tibial osteotomy is performed when only one side of your knee shows damage.

  3. There are so many people in the world who are suffering from arthritis. Only in United State around 50 millions off people are suffering from this disorder. Though it is impossible to cure arthritis, it can be control by treatment. Arthritis Treatment

  4. Thanks for sharing this great post. It’s very enlightening about arthritis treatment. I absolutely love to read informative stuff. Looking forward to find out more and acquire further knowledge from here! Cheers!

    Healing Exercises

  5. I really appreciate your article. the post has excellent tips which are useful.
    Total Knee Replacement in Bangalore | Total Hip Replacement in Bangalore

  6. very nice blog. If anyone searching for the best hip replacement surgery in Punjab, then EVA Hospital is the best option for him/her. This is the most trusted ortho hospital in Ludhiana.

  7. Very Nice blog. I am impressed of this blog, excellent explanation. when i was searching for orthopedic surgeon in bangalore i found the Koshys Hospital is also a Best Orthopedic Hospital in Ramamurthy Nagar, Bangalore. For more info :

  8. Great share..!Thanks for sharing its very helpful.
    Visit hip replacement surgery in thane for the best hip replacement surgery.

  9. Chronic back pain is the most rapidly disease of the united state. Almost 50 million people have a problem of disorder.
    Stem cell therapy new jersey give you the treatment of arthritis. Every type of arthritis are handled here. It's surgery free treatment. Your disease is done within a week. Thanks

  10. When it comes to treating osteoarthritis (OA) in your knees and hips, you may have more options than you realize. In March 2014, the Osteoarthritis Research Society International (OARSI), a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting osteoarthritis research and treatment, updated its recommendations for the treatment of osteoarthritis targeted to different patient characteristics. A group of 13 experts from around the world reviewed the latest research on OA treatments as the framework for the revised guidelines. OARSI published its first guidelines in 2008.

    For more information visit knee bursitis treatment

    The four groups of patients identified in the new guidelines are:

    Patients with OA in one or both knees only and no co-existing conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, kidney failure, GI bleeding, depression or obesity.

    Patients with knee-only OA who have co-existing conditions

    Patients with multi-joint OA (hip, hand, etc.) and no co-existing conditions

    Patients with multi-joint OA who have co-existing conditions

  11. I have really enjoyed and reading your blogs for these posts.Any way I’ll be replay for your great thinks and I hope you post again soon.

  12. Nice blog. Thanks for sharing.
    If you are looking for the best Ortho Doctor in Ludhiana then meet Dr. Rajinder Singh at Kalyan Hospital. Dr. Rajinder Singh is a maestro in the field of orthopedic and provides joint pain treatment, joint replacement surgery, physiotherapy, and other treatments.