Following evaluation, the orthopaedic surgeon will discuss treatment
options with you based on the diagnosis and the severity of your
condition. Options may include medication, physical therapy, steroid
injections, joint fluid supplementation or surgery.
| Lifestyle modification:
Lifestyle and quality
of life is a key factor in deciding to proceed with reconstructive
surgery. For young patients, lifestyle modification may mean giving
up sports or playing less aggressively. In early to moderate joint
disease, avoiding certain activities may decrease pain to a tolerable
level, and still preserve a reasonable quality of life. For example,
limiting stair climbing, jumping and running activities may be a
reasonable alternative to considering surgery for a patient with
moderate arthritis of the hip or knee.
More severe arthritis may interfere with sleep and limit the activities
required to maintain a healthy heart and lungs. In such cases, even
for patients at an advanced age, joint reconstructive surgery may
significantly improve activity and overall health status.