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Suggest treatment for arthritis in hips and lower back

Jul 2013
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Answered by

Orthopaedic Surgeon, Joint Replacement
Practicing since : 1996
Answered : 2148 Questions
Dear Sir: X-rays reveal that I have arthritis in both hips and lower back. Barring hip replacement surgery wht alternatives exist to assist me to walk more than short distances without pain and discomfort. Thank you... XXXXXXX Trans
Posted Sat, 15 Feb 2014 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. K. Naga Ravi Prasad 1 hour later
Brief Answer: Initial management is Conservative. Detailed Answer: Hi, thanks for writing to XXXXXXX The initial management of an arthritic hip is always by conservative (non-surgical) methods which are as follows - * ACTIVITY MODIFICATION -It is important to maintain as much activity and joint motion as possible, but it has to be kept in mind that impact activities will aggravate arthritis. Running and jumping will often accelerate cartilage loss from the joint. The key is to focus on low impact activities, such as swimming or cycling. These are the best forms of exercise with arthritic hips as they do not require significant weight bearing across the hip joints. * CANES - Canes or walking sticks are useful, particularly when the arthritis affects only one side. It is important to use the cane in the opposite hand from the bad hip or knee. This allows you to lean away from the bad leg, taking weight off of it. * WEIGHT LOSS - Protecting the joint from excessive load may slow down the rate of cartilage loss. It is also effective in relieving pain. The heavier you are, the more stress you put on your joints. Significant weight loss for obese patients can make a dramatic difference in the pain arising from arthritic joints. * NON STEROIDAL ANTIINFLAMMATORY DRUGS (NSAIDs) - This family of medications includes aspirin, ibuprofen, naprosyn, and other non-narcotic medications to decrease pain and inflammation. These medications have to be taken as and when needed. * GLUCOSAMINE / CHONDROITIN SULFATE - There is compelling evidence that this combination is relatively safe and works by decreasing pain & inflammation in the joint thereby reducing the need for regular painkiller usage. But, to produce its therapeutic effect, these combinations have to be taken for atleast 3-4 months. * HIP INJECTIONS - Injection therapies do not "cure" the underlying problems of arthritis, but can be useful for short term relief (potentially for a few months). With the above measures, you should get adequate pain relief making you to perform your activities of daily living (ADL's) comfortably. Hope I have addressed your query. Happy to help further Regards
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