Understanding the Basics Behind Osteoarthritis
What is Degenerative Joint Disease?
Degenerative Joint Disease, also known as osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis that affects over 32.5 million adults in the U.S.
In a healthy joint, cartilage surrounds the bone connection and acts as a layer of protection. This prevents bones from grinding against each other. However, in some instances, the cartilage gradually wears away until the bones of the joint directly touch. Over time, this unprotected articulation causes the bones to grind, which leads to inflammation, discomfort, pain, and even immobility. As a result, many people seek osteoarthritis treatments in Kansas City for relief.
The key to proper recovery comes from the expertise of your orthopedic specialist. Our orthopedic and fracture clinic in Kansas City focuses on diagnosis and treatment for all types of broken bones. With over 100 years of combined service in practice, we utilize the best technologies and techniques customized to each patient.
Causes of Degenerative Joint Disease
While some people are more prone to degenerative joint disease, several underlying factors can lead to osteoarthritis. These include:
Older people have a higher risk of developing osteoarthritis.
Osteoarthritis is more prevalent in women.
Injuries can increase the risk for osteoarthritis, even if they are years old.
Certain repetitive physical activities (such as playing a sport) can put repetitive stress on joints that could lead to wear and tear.
Extra force on your joints can cause stress and even inflammation.
Some people are born with abnormal joints or cartilage.
Certain metabolic diseases:
Metabolic conditions such as diabetes or hemochromatosis (when the body has too much iron) can lead to osteoarthritis.
Symptoms & Signs of Degenerative Joint Disease
Diagnosis for osteoarthritis requires an examination from a specialized provider, along with tests such as X-rays or ultrasounds.
Common osteoarthritis symptoms include:
- Joint stiffness, especially after you’ve been sitting or lying down
- Pain and swelling around the joint (can be a sharp pain or dull ache)
- Feeling of the joints crunching when you move
- Inability to move for basic tasks such as cleaning or putting on clothes
- Joint Replacement Surgery
- Other Specialized Treatments
Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance Degenerative Joint Disease Assessment
Assessing the Injury
Finding the right osteoarthritis treatment in Kansas City starts with an assessment.
You can think of osteoarthritis as a spectrum, with some instances being more severe than others. The Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance orthopedic specialists always focus on each individual patient and their concerns before creating a treatment plan.
Therefore, during your initial appointment, we will often ask questions such as:
From there, we can decide whether more conservative osteoarthritis treatments will suffice or whether you would find the most benefit with surgery.
- Does your pain currently limit you or your activities?
- Has your pain progressed or worsened recently?
- Have you noticed any change in your symptoms that have made it more challenging to function?
- What are your lifestyle goals?
- How has pain affected those goals?
How to Prevent
Degenerative Joint Disease
Osteoarthritis isn’t 100% preventable, but it is always important to take proper care of your joints. When your joints are healthy, they are less likely to become worn down, though some wear and tear is expected as years pass.
Taking care of your bones and joints is something you should implement in your daily life. We recommend regular exercise, eating a balanced diet, maintaining a healthy weight, and monitoring your blood sugar levels if you’re diabetic. In doing so, you may reduce the amount of stress on your joints to slow down any potential degenerative process.
You should also assess your pain levels. Rather than waiting until the problem becomes severe, note when your pain deters you from your daily activities. It’s often best to seek medical attention from one of our osteoarthritis specialists to help manage these problems when you are experiencing limitations in your activity.
About Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance
Meet Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance
Our board-certified, fellowship-trained physicians and surgeons are highly experienced in their respective fields and are considered among the top orthopedic providers in the Midwest.
Along with our Physician Assistants, Nurse Practitioners, and support staff, Kansas City Orthopedic Alliance physicians deliver the utmost level of dedicated care across a range of subspecialties.
While diverse in background and capabilities, the common thread that brings all of our team members together is our patient-centered approach.
Get help for your Degenerative Joint Disease from the best orthopedic physicians in Kansas City.
Our care is personal. Our team is knowledgeable. And we’re more available than ever.
With access to board-certified specialists across Kansas City, we have the tools to meet almost every musculoskeletal condition.
Overland Park, Kansas10777 Nall Ave Suite 300 Overland Park, KS 66211
Leawood, Kansas3651 College Blvd. Leawood, KS 66211
Kansas City, MissouriSaint Luke's Medical Plaza #1 4320 Wornall Rd., Ste. 610 Kansas City, MO 64111
Belton, MissouriBelton Regional Campus 17067 S Outer Rd #301 Belton, MO 64012
Merriam, Kansas7450 W. Frontage Rd Merriam, KS 66203
Frequently Asked Questions
Dr. Ting and his staff are the best!
Dr. Ting and his staff are the best! Sarah his nurse is kind and supportive. Dr. Tings nurse for surgery was absolutely the best! Dr. Ting, I have complete faith in. He is who I shall go to for anything he handles! Can’t say enough about him! Thank you all for making a scary time a completely peaceful event. You are the best!!
Staff is great
…just did my husbands hands on Wed. last week and can’t believe how well he is doing. We have already recommended you to our son and a few others. Your staff is great and my husband doing well. Thanks to you.
I left a very happy patient.
…I arrived a little bit late. I got checked in quickly and was back in a room within 10 minutes. Dr Rhodes was very friendly and took the time to pull up pictures of my surgery and show them and explain them to me. I left a very happy patient.
Dr. Scott Ellsworth is one of the best
Dr. Scott Ellsworth is one of the best I have ever worked with. He is knowledgeable, efficient, caring, and knows his patients. He has a special bedside manner that makes any patient in any situation feel comfortable. All of the nurses and office staff are wonderful as well.
I'm consistently impressed
In the process of treating my particular problem I’ve been to Apex probably 4-5 times. I’m consistently impressed by the professionalism of the staff and the amount of care & time they spend with me as a patient. They’re always very careful to make sure I understand the nature of the medical problem, the reasons for the diagnosis, and the type of treatment recommended. Stephanie’s care and concern is especially appreciated.