Nowadays we are seeing an increase in the incidence of arthritis affecting young people. Degeneration of bones is one of the devastating chronic conditions that are affecting people of all age groups around the world. The diagnosis of osteoarthritis in young adults is difficult because of their pain resisting capacity but the mode of treatment applies to all. The management, early diagnosis, and treatment may help people to overcome the condition effectively. In this article, Dr. Shankar B S, Senior Consultant - Orthopaedic Surgeon, Manipal Hospital Malleshwaram explains the causes, symptoms and possible treatments for knee osteoarthritis in young adults.
What does knee osteoarthritis feel like?
A lot of people fail to get treatment on time because they don’t understand the signs and symptoms of knee osteoarthritis. If you are also eager to know what does knee osteoarthritis feel like here are its symptoms:
- Persistent joint pain in single or multiple joints or affecting different joints at different times
- Swelling in joints for more than three weeks is an indication of the early onset of arthritis.
- Decreased movement of joints with restricted range of motion, joint redness, and local warmth are symptoms of early onset of arthritis.
- Stiffness in one or more joints in the early morning is another sign of arthritis. This can be relieved through applying hot water packs or a hot shower, and exercise.
Types of Knee Osteoarthritis
There are two types of arthritis.
It is an autoimmune disorder that involves multiple joints and is usually genetic. It needs a different approach with lots of investigation. Blood tests, ultrasound, X-ray, and MRI scans are the different modes of diagnosis to reveal the type of arthritis. Treatment for rheumatoid arthritis involves Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, steroids, disease-modifying ant-rheumatic drugs, and biological, and monoclonal antibodies.
The second type of arthritis is osteoarthritis in young adults. It is mainly due to synovial issues, increase in uric acid, continuous alcohol intake, high intake of red meat, non-vegetarian food, also due to some vegetarian food like spinach, cauliflower, etc.
Knee Osteoarthritis In Young Adults Causes
What causes knee osteoarthritis in youngsters? The inflammatory and degenerating arthritis affecting young individuals are mainly due to:
- sedentary lifestyle
- poor posture
- chair-bound people having issues around the cervical spine area, and lumbar spine area
- In athletes, it is mainly due to persistent regular joint injuries leading to wear and tear of bone tissue.
- Chronic alcoholism and steroid abuse affects bone function and cause arthritis in people of all age group.
- The health problems like hormonal disorder, uncontrolled diabetes, history of osteoarthritis, and avascular necrosis in the hip lead to early arthritis.
Knee osteoarthritis treatment
Early treatment in young adults is very important because it interferes with daily activities, decreases output efficiency in the work, and increases stress among individuals causing depression. Soft tissue rheumatism also increases joint pain, and stiffness, and decreases mobility in the joints. The cause of the arthritis is analysed through a blood test. Vitamin deficiency, uncontrolled diabetes, and hormonal disturbances in hypo and hyperthyroidism are the few causes of arthritis in young adults.
Arthritis becoming deliberating in young individuals requires surgical knee replacement. Avascular necrosis of hip grade 4, requires total hip replacement. In the case of complete degenerative tricompartment arthritis, total knee replacement is required. Unicompartmental knee replacement for unicompartmental arthritis of the knee is recommended.
Joint replacement is performed in case of too much joint degeneration of bones and joints leading to disability to perform daily activities. Joint replacement is popular and effective in relieving pain, improving joint function, and showing good lasting results.
The non-pharmacological approach to managing arthritis is early diagnosis, intake of a healthy diet like vegetables, and fruits, regular cardiac exercise for around 30 minutes, the practice of yoga, and controlling diabetes. Regular follow-up with the doctor and intake of proper medications on time aids in relieving excruciating pain and improving the movement of joint function.
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