Osteoarthritis is a painful condition that affects the cartilage. It is very difficult when it occurs in the fingers and may limit you considerably. Although the worn cartilage between the fingers can no longer grow, nowadays it could help alleviate the pain and mobility to get back. What is osteoarthritis and what treatments are available?
Osteoarthritis is a form of a disease of the cartilage within the joint which the cartilage thinning, becomes softer and more irregular in shape. Usually these rheumatic disease develops gradually and gives pain. Moving the joints where it becomes more difficult to go through stiffness and pain.
It usually starts that there is of a stiffness in the fingers. The symptoms are worse after a period of rest. This is also called start pain. Especially after getting up in the morning gives the complaints. The stiffness disappears when the fingers move again. If the hand is heavily taxed or prolonged pain can occur. Especially when a force is put on the fingers. If the finger is thick and warm, there is inflammation.
The fingers may osteoarthritis some bony look like. This is because at the edges of the joints in the fingers, additional bone tissue grows. This also ensures that the finger sometimes can no longer extend or bend at all. There may also be loss of power occur in the fingers, making it harder to get something or squeezing. As a result, objects can easily fall out of your hands.
How exactly it occurs is not known. There is an abrasion or rheumatic disease. If by any damage as a result of an accident, for example, touching the finger damaged, there is a greater chance of developing osteoarthritis. It is more common in older people, women, people with a job in which the joints are heavily taxed and in people where it occurs in the family.
The diagnosis is usually easy to be determined on the basis of a clinical picture. The doctor will explain about arthritis and how to deal with it. If symptoms worsen, you often will be referred to another treatment. ?? S X-rays are rarely needed because osteoarthritis is not always clear on a picture to see.
Exercise is important, as long as there is no overload. So you can continue to move the fingers by stretching them and spread. This can be quite painful at first, but after a while the exercise pain will be less. If there is too much pain afterwards, it means that the exercise should be the next time less intensive. It is individual what exercises are best. It is wise to learn exercises under the guidance of a therapist.
Unfortunately, no cure for osteoarthritis. Medicines can certainly reduce the pain and sometimes contain an anti-inflammatory substance. There is a cream that can be smeared on the aching joints comprising an analgesic substance. Nor should just paracetamol. If this does not help enough, there may, in consultation with the doctor another painkiller such as ibuprofen, diclofenac and naproxen are used.
Because osteoarthritis is a chronic disease, it may mean that made prolonged use of medications. By regularly taking analgesics, prevent an incorrect loading of the joint. The joint is then used as normal as possible. If you take too much pain medication, the joint is loaded incorrectly so that the complaints will only increase.
Your GP can refer you to a therapist. This may include the following therapists: occupational therapist, manual therapist, rheumatologist, neurologist, orthopedic surgeon, plastic surgeon, arthritis nurse, social worker or psychologist. In addition to the physical discomfort can also arise from psychological symptoms due to the disease, for example because you can no longer exercise your profession or hobby.
How osteoarthritis runs in the fingers, is individual. Sometimes the symptoms may lengthy stay away or just keep coming back. These symptoms can persist for years. If movement of the fingers continues to serious problems such as lying awake at night ?? pain, then you can choose for surgery. An orthopedic surgeon for example, the joint ends smoothen or remove loose pieces of bone from the joint. If the joints are deformed, a plastic surgeon embellish the joint which is also a part of the movement can come back.
If the pain sufficiently can be combated by medications, the patient may sometimes benefit to be referred to a pain clinic. Here you will see the opportunities if it makes sense to block certain nerves so that no more pain signals transmitted.