This Is What Is Happening With Arthritis

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09/24/2013
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Interviewer: We've talked about arthritis as a condition that can be helped with these treatments. I think we all know that it's a painful joint condition, but what exactly is going on in your joint that causes arthritis? What is it?

Dr. Joel Baumgartner: Let's just stick with the knee because it's so easy to talk about. I'm a high school football player, boom, I get tackled, the guy sprains my knee. I'm a high school football player so I've got a perfectly normal knee, right? It's perfectly normal. What happened though is by spraining that knee I caused some instability in that knee. Over the next 10 years, compared to my other knee, that  knee that I sprained is a little bit loose. Over the years, there's just a little bit more movement in there. It's like your bike tire is slightly malaligned or the tire in front of your car instead of being perfectly straight is a little bit cockeyed. This tire is going to go bald and pop a lot before this tire is. It's the same thing in that knee. I had a vulnerable injury. It's kind of grinding a little bit. Over the years it starts to wear out that cartilage.

What arthritis is, is the loss of that protective cartilage. The cartilage is getting a little bit thinner because those ligaments aren't holding together very well. As you start to lose and shave off that cartilage, the body starts saying it hurts. It actually starts to create these little bone spurs. That's why people always talk about, "Oh, I've got a bone spur in my knee with that arthritis." What it is, is the bone is eventually kind of trying to say quit moving so much, you're unstable. It's kind of crazy these  bone spurs are trying to control that movement. Our goal is to say, "Okay, let's actually go back and stabilize those ligaments. Let's get the body to repair some of that cartilage that's wearing down and reverse some of those arthritic changes."

Interviewer: Can PRP or Prolotherapy help things like rheumatoid arthritis or real severe forms?

Dr. Joel Baumgartner: It can help really severe forms of osteoarthritis.

Interviewer: Okay.

Dr. Joel Baumgartner: The difference between rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis is this. With rheumatoid arthritis, it's an autoimmune attack of the body onto itself. It means the body is hyper-inflamed. It's eroding the joints. It's eating itself away. That's a different bug to tackle. With that, usually when we use Prolo or PRP, we try to calm down the inflammation of the body. We may do a food sensitivity test. We might do some adrenal work to see what's happening, why is your body so hypersensitive and attacking itself?

They both have the term arthritis on them, one is rheumatoid arthritis, the wear and tear, and 99% of people have osteoarthritis, which is the standard, the body is wearing out and just aging. It's a different approach and the stuff that we do is mostly to treat the wear and tear, the run of the mill, the body is breaking down type of arthritis.

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You either have or have heard of arthritis. But what is actually going on in that joint that causes it? Dr. Joel Baumgartner describes arthritis, and some of the issues behind it. He also discusses different kinds of arthritis and some of the new treatments for them.

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