September 20, 2017 by Dean Bellefeuille

Osteoarthritis Pain

It’s a group none of us want to join, yet even so, as many as 10 million Americans are members: sharing a diagnosis of osteoarthritis. Resulting from the wearing away of cartilage over the years, osteoarthritis usually has an effect on bigger joints, like the knees, and may be debilitating to a senior’s quality of life. With three main recommended treatment plans – over-the-counter drugs to help reduce inflammation, such as ibuprofen, prescription painkillers such as tramadol, or physical therapy – a good number of people with osteoarthritis have reconciled themselves to a life of limping, discomfort, modified activity levels, and not surprisingly, chronic pain.

And despite the fact that knee replacement surgery can be beneficial for some, not all arthritis sufferers are suitable; or, the potential health risks that come with such an invasive procedure are too great, especially for aging adults. Now, however, an impressive new treatment has entered the arena, and is providing great relief from chronic pain and without the potential risks or side effects of the other alternatives. Referred to as cooled radio frequency ablation (“Coolief”), the treatment works by “…changing the wiring of the knee…taking away the pain signal and interrupting it,” according to Dr. Amin Sandeep, a pain specialist at Rush University Medical Center. The impressive reduction in discomfort, swelling and stiffness also makes it possible for many patients to reduce their need for prescription drugs and to resume – or start – a more active lifestyle, leading to better overall health.

Similar to shots of cortisone, long-lasting but temporary respite from aches and pains is normally achieved for a period of about six to twelve months. Requiring only local anesthetic, the treatment is conducted on an outpatient basis within as few as 40 minutes. Risks and recovery time are minimal; nonetheless, it’s important to bear in mind that the treatment does not adjust, slow down, or end the progress of osteoarthritis. But for many, quality of everyday life is considerably improved as discomfort is diminished significantly.

Are you or a senior loved one dealing with the effects of osteoarthritis? A little help goes a considerable way towards improving quality of life for the elderly with chronic health concerns such as osteoarthritis and any other conditions of aging, whether through assisting with housework and doing the laundry, taking care of grocery shopping and preparing meals, making sure prescription medications are taken exactly as prescribed, or simply offering cheerful companionship to brighten up the day. Contact At Home Independent Living, an award-winning independent living care agency, at 315-579-HOME to learn more ways that we can assist! For a full list of communities where we provide care, please visit our Service Area page.