OSTEOARTHRITIS:

Jun 12, 2014

OSTEOARTHRITIS:

Joints including muscle, ligaments, and tendons, as well as blood, nerve and lymphatic supply. Joint cartilage is a connective tissue that is not able to repair itself because it does not have a good blood, nerve or lymphatic supply.

Pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) is a relatively new approach to treating OA, emphasizing stimulation of tissue repair. Most studies to date have shown that PEMFs are effective in treating pain and improving function in OA, typically, at 8 weeks following treatment, and with virtually no toxicity or side effects. In these studies PEMF stimulation increased cell growth and extracellular matrix (ECM) production,inhibited inflammation, helping to reduce inflammation, and increased joint capsule cells.

The right and best approach would be to prevent progression of the OA process at the earliest stages possible. The later the stage and the more severe the problem, the more challenging it is to treat no matter what you do, short of joint replacement.

One study in guinea pigs, which develop arthritis very quickly, often with fairly severe arthritis at about 2 years of age, and evidence of arthritis beginning between 3 to 6 months of age, shows that the fundamental underlying process of progression of arthritis can be slowed or stopped, even in the presence of fairly severe arthritis (OA). The sham group showed increased cartilage surface degeneration compared to the two PEMF groups. The PEMF group also had much lower evidence of cartilage damage and degeneration.

Most people with arthritis will need to continue therapy for the rest their life in order to reduce or prevent progression of their arthritis. Whether the arthritic process can be reversed is still subject to further research. The research that Dr. Pawluk references in his full article, shows us that PEMF therapies can be a very important tool for the treatment of arthritis. Most adults will develop arthritis during their lifetime, becoming worse with age. He sates that the use of PEMFs even with mild arthritis will decrease the progression, probably allowing the person to avoid procedures and eventually joint replacement. What has to be accepted by anybody with arthritis is that treatment will have to be lifelong, whether the arthritis is mild or severe.

*The information shared above are excerptsfrom Articles written by William Pawluk, MD, MScBoard Certified Family Physician and Holistic Health Practitioner; Former Assistant Professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and University of Maryland. To read his full article, click here.