Osteoarthritis Specialist

Valerius Medical Group & Research Center

Rheumatologists located in Los Alamitos, CA

Osteoarthritis is the country’s most common form of arthritis, but that doesn’t make it easy to live with. When the pain, swelling, and stiffness of osteoarthritis starts making daily life difficult, find a solution with Dr. Nathaniel Neal and Dr. Rebekah Neal at Valerius Medical Group & Research Center. These specially-trained rheumatologists have years of experience helping treat the pain and the severity of arthritis, and they may be able to help you too. If you’re located near Los Alamitos Long Beach, CA, call to schedule your appointment or book online today.

Osteoarthritis Q & A

What is osteoarthritis?

The most common form of arthritis, osteoarthritis, occurs when the protective cartilage at the end of your bone wears down. That creates added friction, leading to pain, swelling, and tenderness in the joint. Osteoarthritis can develop in any joint, but it often occurs in the:

  • Hands
  • Knees
  • Hips
  • Spine

Certain individuals may be more at risk for developing osteoarthritis. Women are more prone to get it than men, and the older you are, the more likely you’ll be diagnosed. Joint injuries or repetitive stress on the joint can also lead to osteoarthritis. Other risk factors include:

  • Obesity
  • Genetics
  • Bone deformities

What are osteoarthritis symptoms?

When you have osteoarthritis, you experience pain, stiffness, and swelling in your joints. These can occur both when you move the joint and afterward. When you first get up in the morning, or after a period of inactivity, stiffness may be worse.

Osteoarthritis can also reduce flexibility and decrease your range of motion. In some cases, it creates a grating sensation and may even lead to bone spurs.

Over time, osteoarthritis causes the deterioration of cartilage -- the firm, slippery tissue found between your bones. That eventually leads to painful bone-on-bone friction.

Can osteoarthritis get better?

Once osteoarthritis develops, it doesn’t go away and is irreversible. In the majority of cases, it slowly gets worse over time. Although the condition is chronic, the symptoms are treatable, and you can slow its progression with the right treatment.

Dr. Nathaniel or Dr. Rebekah develops a customized treatment plan to address your arthritis concerns. This plan may include medications for pain management including:

  • Acetaminophen
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Duloxetine
  • Cortisone injections
  • Lubrication injections

In addition to these medications, your rheumatologist may suggest increasing physical activity. Staying active and maintaining a healthy weight are also vital to the success of osteoarthritis treatment. To encourage physical activity and reduce pain, Dr. Nathaniel or Dr. Rebekah may recommend the following:

  • Physical therapy
  • Occupational therapy
  • Yoga
  • Tai chi

If the pain and discomfort of osteoarthritis interferes with your life, contact Valerius Medical Group & Research Center today. Call to book your appointment or schedule it online easily.