By 2040, close to 80 million men and women in the United States will have seen a doctor for arthritis. This group of related ailments causes inflammation, and nearly 25% of the men and women affected experience workplace limitations. If arthritis is restricting your everyday activities or upsetting your career, call or make an appointment online today with the experienced medical staff at Carolina Medical Center in Walterboro, South Carolina.
Arthritis refers to any disorder that inflames your joints. There are more than 100 diseases and conditions included in the diagnosis of arthritis, and the most common include:
The different forms of arthritis have similar signs and symptoms. Your affected joints are likely to exhibit the following:
To diagnose you with arthritis, Dr. Michael Blubaugh and Dr. Sanjay Kumar review your medical history and symptoms before performing a physical exam. During your exam, they check your joints for signs of arthritis and ask you to perform a series of exercises to test your range of motion.
Blood, urine, and joint fluid are sent to a lab to diagnose the type of arthritis. Imaging tests, including X-rays, CT scans, and MRIs, help further diagnose and treat your arthritis when required.
There’s no cure for arthritis. The treatment offered at Carolina Medical Center helps relieve your symptoms and improve your joint function.
Treatment plans often include medications, physical therapy, and surgery. Here are some medications that Dr. Blubaugh and Dr. Kumar might prescribe for arthritis:
Analgesics reduce pain but don’t decrease inflammation. The most common analgesic is acetaminophen, the active ingredient in Tylenol.
NSAIDs reduce pain and inflammation. The most common NSAIDs include ibuprofen -- the main ingredient in Advil and Motrin IB -- and naproxen sodium (the active ingredient in Aleve).
Counterirritants, including creams and ointments containing menthol or capsaicin, interfere with the transmission of your body’s pain signals.
DMARDs are primarily prescribed to treat rheumatoid arthritis. This medication slows or stops your immune system from attacking your joints.
Biologic response modifiers are genetically engineered drugs that target protein molecules involved in your body’s immune response. Biologic response modifiers often complement DMARDs.
Prednisone and cortisone are taken orally or as injections into your joints affected by arthritis. Corticosteroids reduce inflammation and suppress your immune system.
If joint pain and stiffness make it difficult for you to move, call or make an appointment online today with the friendly and compassionate medical professionals at Carolina Medical Center.