Many people find that their joint pain has severely limited their ability to do everything they’d like to. Not only do painful joints make it difficult to comfortably exercise and stay healthy, but they can stop patients from pursuing active hobbies, or limit their ability to work. If joint pain is stopping you from living your life to the fullest, our team at Phoenix Regenerative Medicine of Scottsdale, AZ, offers viscosupplementation as a way to help.
How Effective Is Viscosupplementation?
A Helpful Solution
Many patients who seek out viscosupplementation have already tried to manage their pain with corticosteroid injections or over-the-counter pain relief. Viscosupplementation injections may offer the additional support these patients need to reduce stiffness and swelling. This, in turn, allows for better functionality of the joint and improved comfort levels.
Whether this treatment is the right fit for you can depend on which joint you want to treat and how severe your condition is. In general, patients with mild to moderate arthritis may benefit from this treatment. It can often help patients stay comfortable, and delay surgery as long as possible. It’s commonly used for knee osteoarthritis, but may also be used for other joints, or rheumatoid arthritis if we believe it has a good chance of helping.
While a single shot can be helpful, one way to boost effectiveness is for our patients to come in for a series of initial treatments. This can help us set a new “comfort foundation” for you. Once better comfort levels have been achieved, the goal will be to support joint comfort and functionality through scheduled maintenance injections.
Ultimately when it comes to making treatment decisions, a consultation is always a good idea. When you visit us during your consultation, you can share your goals and needs with us, and we’ll be able to assess your joints. This will help us give you personalized advice on which treatments we believe have the best chance of improving your comfort levels.
How Quickly Should I Notice Results?
A Couple Weeks
These Viscosupplementation injections contain hyaluronic acid, which works together with your body to improve symptoms, rather than covering them up. As this treatment gets to work, it may be a few weeks until you notice the results. However, this timeline can also depend on individual factors. Some patients notice results within a single week, but a few weeks is considered normal.
Once you’ve begun to notice the benefits, we can talk about how much relief it’s offering you, and what kind of treatment schedule may be a good fit for you. Many patients find that either a single treatment, or a treatment series, every six months is a good way to stay on top of their results.
Understanding Hyaluronic Acid
If you haven’t heard of hyaluronic acid, it may sound like something out of science fiction. However, it is in fact a naturally occurring substance found in the body. This substance helps our joints stay flexible, strong, and well-hydrated. Viscosupplementation is when this ingredient is added to a gel base and injected into a stiff or painful joint.
Both the gel base and the hyaluronic acid work to lubricate the joint, while the hyaluronic acid also promotes joint health. This treatment can help improve your joint’s movement and function, and can slow the progression of joint disease. It can also help patients avoid more invasive treatments like knee replacement surgery for as long as they can.
What Happens During Treatment?
For maximum efficiency, the injection is directly delivered to the joint. Since all this treatment requires is an injection, you’ll be able to go back home once we’re done. The whole process is very simple, and we make it as easy and comfortable for our patients as we can.
Before you come in for your treatment, we may ask you some questions about your health. Some patients wonder if they have to do anything special before their appointment.
While we can go over this during a consultation, there generally isn’t much a patient has to do before they receive their treatment. If you’re getting a knee injection, you may want to wear loose, comfortable pants or shorts for your treatment so it’s easy for us to administer the injection.
If you like the sound of minimally-invasive treatments but aren’t quite sure if this is the right one for you, we do offer a range of different options.
We know it’s important to be as flexible as possible since each patient and their needs are unique. Regenerative medicine injections and PRP therapy are among the treatments we offer. We’d be happy to help you better understand your options, and what you could expect from each treatment.
What Are the Benefits of Viscosupplementation?
Joint pain can make the little things we used to take for granted a major chore. Crouching can become so painful, that even the simple task of picking dropped keys off the floor becomes a hassle. It can limit how often someone may want to walk up a set of stairs and make them more likely to avoid participating in physical activities, like playing with their grandkids or going on a hike.
By getting joint pain under control, it can help restore a sense of normalcy to daily life. A joint that’s working well can liberate patients to just enjoy their lives without having to hesitate as much as they used to.
Arthritis tends to really act up at night. Someone with arthritis who’s trying to get a good night’s sleep may find themselves restless due to joint stiffness and discomfort. This can make it harder to actually fall asleep, and can also make it difficult to stay asleep throughout the night. Insufficient sleep can leave people feeling exhausted, achy, and less able to focus on their daily tasks.
By improving your symptoms, you may be able to get a better night’s sleep. This can help you have a greater chance of ending the night in comfort and entering the next morning feeling well-rested and ready to take on the day.
Joint pain can create a vicious cycle. On one hand, gentle exercise is good for joints and can help patients maintain a healthy weight. However, painful joints can make exercise difficult. This can lead to the joint symptoms getting worse, and could lead to weight gain. Weight gain could put more pressure on the joints. The patient may then find themselves avoiding exercise to avoid pain, but ultimately ending up in more pain than before.
By managing their joint pain, the patient may feel more comfortable exercising. This can help them control their weight and improve their joint’s overall functionality. Exercise has so many benefits for every part of our bodies, including our minds, heart, and lungs! In this way, seeking out treatment can help improve a patient’s health.
Even if you’re only just noticing the first signs of knee osteoarthritis, it may be a good idea to seek out treatment sooner rather than later.
By staying on top of your symptoms and supporting the health of your joints, you may be able to help delay the progression of joint disease. This can help you comfortably use your joints for longer, with the knowledge that you’re doing all you can to protect their future functionality as well.
When surgery is the alternative, many patients would rather try injectable treatments first. Surgery tends to require a lengthy recovery period, and many patients just don’t feel ready to face it. On the other hand, viscosupplementation injections can offer relief without surgery, making it an appealing option.
When it comes to scheduling your injectable treatment, all you’ll have to do is make sure you have enough time to get to our office, receive your treatment, and get home. This treatment shouldn’t even take up a whole day. This makes it much easier to fit into a busy schedule than surgeries that often take up weeks of recovery time.
All that said, we recognize that joint surgery is sometimes inevitable. What’s ultimately important is doing what’s best for you and the health of your joints. Even if you do have to get surgery, feel free to reach out to us about the treatments we offer that can help reduce your recovery time after surgery. These treatments may include the use of specialized machines that are meant to help prevent scar tissue formation.
Are You Ready for More Information?
Reading articles can certainly be helpful, but getting personalized advice is a good way to make sure you’re setting yourself up for success. Our team offers multiple treatment options and wants to pair you with the right fit. If you’re ready to learn more about how we can help you achieve better joint comfort, contact us at Phoenix Regenerative Medicine in Scottsdale, AZ, today and get your consultation set up!