Top Tips for Managing Your Arthritis
According to Timothy Murphy, MD, a Greensboro orthopedic surgeon and member of the Cone Health Medical and Dental staff, many first experience arthritis symptoms in their 40s and 50s.
While arthritis can run in families, it is often caused by wear and tear or an old injury like a torn ligament around a joint. Many times, people experience arthritis in shoulders, hips and knees.
“People often describe arthritis pain like a toothache in the joint,” says Dr. Murphy. “Also, the pain is often worse when you start to walk after sitting for a bit.”
For periodic arthritis pain, over-the-counter medications like ibuprofen, acetaminophen or naproxen can help.
“When pain is interfering with having a happy, healthy and active life, it may be time to consult with an orthopedist who can evaluate your issues,” shares Dr. Murphy.
To start, an orthopedist may suggest bracing, icing and anti-inflammatory creams or specialized lubrication injections. Cortisone shots may help manage more severe pain.
Finally, for more severe arthritis in shoulders, hips and knees, surgery can get you back to activities you enjoy.
“If pain management options are not working, discuss surgical options with your doctor,” adds Dr. Murphy. “Cutting-edge total joint replacements for shoulders, knees and hips have high success rates.”
Today, thanks to advanced surgical techniques, some joint replacement surgeries can be done in an outpatient setting or require only a short hospital stay.
By working with your doctor, you can better manage your arthritis and improve your quality of life.
About the Provider
Timothy Murphy, MD, is an orthopedic surgeon in Greensboro, North Carolina.