Arthritis Specialist

Orthopedic Associates of Southwest Florida, P.A.

Orthopedic Surgeons located in Fort Myers, FL

Over 22% of Americans deal with some form of arthritis each year. Arthritis can be painful and drastically limit your mobility. At Orthopedic Associates of Southwest Florida, P.A in Fort Myers, Florida, Edward R. Dupay, Jr., DO, provides both surgical and nonsurgical treatment for all types of arthritis. To learn more about your options for arthritis relief, book an appointment by phone or online today.

Arthritis

What is arthritis?

Arthritis is a chronic condition that causes swelling and tenderness in the joints. Arthritis causes stiffness, pain, swelling, and decreased mobility in affected areas. The most common types of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

What is osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis is caused by wear and tear on the cartilage of your joints. Cartilage cushions the ends of bones and allows smooth movement of the joints and bones. When this cushion becomes worn down, the bones begin to grind against each other, causing pain and limiting your mobility. Osteoarthritis happens gradually, but can be worsened by an injury or infection. 

What is rheumatoid arthritis?

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that causes your immune system to attack the joints. Rheumatoid arthritis causes painful swelling and inflammation to the lining of the joints. Rheumatoid arthritis can completely destroy cartilage and lead to bone erosion. Although the exact cause of rheumatoid arthritis is unknown, experts believe it to be genetic. 

What is gout?

Gout is a common form of arthritis caused by excessive urate crystals in the joints. This can result from an unbalanced diet, obesity, diabetes, and other conditions that increase levels of uric acid. Gout causes inflammation, limited range of motion, and severe joint pain. 

Are there other types of arthritis?

Arthritis is an umbrella term for a long list of conditions that affect the joints. They include:

  • Septic arthritis
  • Thumb arthritis
  • Psoriatic arthritis
  • Joint infections
  • Juvenile idiopathic arthritis

Your surgeon evaluates your physical health and condition to determine the type of arthritis you have. Your treatment options depend on the specifics of your condition. 

How is arthritis treated?

Before you begin treatment, your surgeon provides you with an accurate diagnosis of your condition. In addition to a physical exam in which your surgeon checks your joints for signs of swelling and inflammation, X-rays are also performed to show the level of damage caused to your joints. 

Arthritis can be treated through a number of methods. Depending on the type of arthritis you have, your surgeon may recommend lifestyle changes like regular exercise and weight loss to reduce the stress on your joints and improve your mobility.  

Medications are also used to effectively treat arthritis. Your doctor may prescribe a painkiller if your pain is severe. Medications are also used to reduce inflammation and stop the immune system from attacking the joints (rheumatoid arthritis). 

If your condition is unresponsive to medications and lifestyle changes, the team offers minimally invasive treatment options like arthroscopic surgery. Surgery is used to repair, replace, and fuse affected joints. 

To speak with a specialist about your options for arthritis relief, book an appointment by phone or online today.