Arthritis Treatment Center :: General FAQ

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General FAQ

 

Important Information That Every Person Should Know About Arthritis

 

Q. Is it true that weather changes can cause joint pain and swelling?
Q. Why is it important to have blood drawn while you are taking arthritis medication?
Q. Why do I get stiff after sitting?
Q. How does an injury to a joint predispose it to arthritis?
Q. How can I get into a drug study?
Q. How do I know if I would qualify for a drug study?
Q. Once I'm in a study can I stop if necessary?
Q. Am I going to feel like a guinea pig in the drug study?
Q. Does exercise damage your knees?
Q. Are there any new treatments for knee pain without undergoing knee replacement?
Q. Can my weight be a factor contributing to my knee pain?
Q. Would ice or heat help my swollen and painful knees?
Q. Is walking considered a weight bearing exercise and do I need to carry weights?
Q. Will I get kidney stones from taking calcium?
Q. How much calcium do I need to take?
Q. Should I take Vitamin D with my calcium?
Q. How will I know if my shoulder pain is tendonitis?
Q. Why do they call bursitis "housemaid's knee"?
Q. Can I prevent tendonitis or bursitis?

 

 

Q. Is it true that weather changes can cause joint pain and swelling?

A. Yes. Barometric pressure changes are responsible for most of the discomfort. Humidity also can aggravate aches and pains.


Q. Why is it important to have blood drawn while you are taking arthritis medication?

A. Almost all arthritis medications can cause side effects. By monitoring blood tests, physicians can tell whether there's a problem before it becomes a "big problem." Also, blood tests help to determine if medicines are having a "good" effect on a patient's arthritis condition.

 

Q. Why do I get stiff after sitting?

A. Inflammation, whether it's generalized or localized to a few joints, leads to stiffness after inactivity.

 

Q. How does an injury to a joint predispose it to arthritis?

A. An injury alters the mechanics and metabolism of the joint. When these problems occur, the joint becomes much more susceptible to the arthritic process.

 

Q. How can I get into a drug study?

A. You can call our office at 301-694-5800 or 1-888-71-STUDY and speak with a nurse coordinator or a designated staff member who is familiar with available studies.

 

Q. How do I know if I would qualify for a drug study?

A. Every study has very specific criteria that each subject must meet. A knowledgeable staff member will discuss these criteria with you to determine if you qualify to screen for a research study. This gives you an opportunity to learn more about our studies.

 

Q. Once I'm in a study can I stop if necessary?

A. Your participation into any study is voluntary and you may stop at any time. If you decide to stop, this will not affect future medical treatment at this site. This is all explained prior to any study.

 

Q. Am I going to feel like a guinea pig in the drug study?

A. No. Before a research trial is started in humans, the drug is always tested in animals first with FDA approval on sufficient safety data. You are monitored carefully through testing.

 

Q. Does exercise damage your knees?

A. It depends. Impact exercises like running can make knee problems worse. On the other hand, non-impact, strengthening and stretching exercises may be very helpful.

 

Q. Are there any new treatments for knee pain without undergoing knee replacement?

A. A number of new treatments are available. These include visco supplements to help lubricate the knee. We're also doing research studies on drugs to slow down cartilage loss and rejuvenate new cartilage.

 

Q. Can my weight be a factor contributing to my knee pain?

A. Absolutely. Every extra pound you carry is seen as about 5 extra pounds by your knees.

 

Q. Would ice or heat help my swollen and painful knees?

A. Generally ice works better for arthritis related knee pain.

 

Q. Is walking considered a weight bearing exercise and do I need to carry weights?

A. Yes, walking is considered a weight bearing exercise. Walking as little as one mile a day can result in higher whole body bone density than those who walk shorter distances. Data suggests that the use of weights when walking is beneficial.

 

Q. Will I get kidney stones from taking calcium?

A. Patients with a history of kidney stones need to use caution and consult their physician when supplementing their calcium intake. Calcium Citrate has been found to cause fewer stones than other forms of calcium.

 

Q. How much calcium do I need to take?

A. For post-menopausal women who take estrogen therapy, 1000mg per day is recommended. In the absence of estrogen replacement, 1500-2000 mg is usually needed.

 

Q. Should I take Vitamin D with my calcium?

A. Yes, Vitamin D is necessary. Vitamin D increases the absorption of calcium and phosphorus from the intestinal tract. A dose of 400-800 IU per day is sufficient for most patients to protect against Vitamin D deficiency and osteomalacia (another form of bone loss).

 

Q. How will I know if my shoulder pain is tendonitis?

A. It really is difficult to know sometimes. Tendonitis generally tends to be aggravated by movement of the arm. There may be a history of repetitive motion prior to the onset of the shoulder pain. There may be pain at night as well. The key here is that if the shoulder pain persists for more than a week, your rheumatologist should be consulted.

 

Q. Why do they call bursitis "house maid's knee"?

A. Historically, one of the most common types of bursitis was bursitis involving the prepatellar area, the area just in front of the knee cap. This was found in women, mostly house maids, who spent a lot of time on their knees cleaning floors. Bursitis is inflammation of bursae. These are small, fluid filled sacs that cushion joints. Bursitis may affect virtually any area of the body.

 

Q. Can I prevent tendonitis or bursitis?

A. Not really. Both tendonitis and bursitis tend to come on as a result of repetitive motion. Age is also a factor. It's difficult to escape either of these factors. Until you can put yourself into a situation where you can have someone else do all your work for you or you can take an anti-aging pill, the risk of anyone getting tendonitis over time is almost 100%.

 

 

“I’ve been taking the Joint Food that Dr. Wei recommended for me about a year now.  Before I started using Joint Food I was using a knee brace when I went to work.  I really had a lot of pain in my knee.  Since I’ve been taking the Joint Food, my knee hasn’t been hurting near as much.  I contribute this to the Joint Food.  We went on vacation last year to Alaska and I didn’t need to use my knee brace.  In fact, I hardly use it at all now since I rarely have knee pain!” 
Nathan Frushour -
Smithsburg, Maryland

“The pain in my ankles required me to wear ankle splints.  I also had severe pain in my back and hips, and I ended up in the hospital.  In 1992, I came to the Arthritis Treatment Center because I was losing feeling in all my extremities.  Doctor's had never given me a diagnosis, but Dr. Wei provided one almost immediately.  We tried a couple of different medicines, which weren't very helpful.  Finally, we tried Arava and within four days I could tell a big difference in the pain in my wrists.  When my sciatica started acting up and gave me extreme pain in my right leg I started Celebrex.  Again, within one week my pain went away.  I can now hold my hands behind my back and bend my legs which I could never do before.  Everyone at the Arthritis Treatment Center has been wonderful and has taken good care of me.  Dr. Wei is an excellent doctor.”
Mary Lee Mauck -
Brunswick, Maryland
 

“I was feeling terrible.  The pain in my back was awful and I felt and looked bad.  Then I came to Arthritis Treatment Center for help.  I had two epidurals for the pain in my lower back and now my back is feeling wonderful!  I’ve had a problem with neck pain and received an epidural in my neck and now it’s feeling better.  Everything at Arthritis Treatment Center is great.  The staff is wonderful.  I feel the care I receive at Arthritis Treatment Center has been marvelous!”
Ethel Kennedy -
Myersville, Maryland
 


“When I was referred to Arthritis Treatment Center by my doctor, my hands were so painful that I couldn’t even hold a pencil.  I couldn’t write my name without it looking like I was scribbling.  Then I came to see Dr. Wei and was started in a drug study program within a few months.  My hands began feeling better.  I am no longer in the drug study because it has ended, but come in for lab work each month so they can monitor my medicines.  I can now work in the gardens around my house, especially my roses.  It’s a great feeling to be able to do these little things.  I consider Arthritis Treatment Center the most sane medical office in Frederick and highly recommend it to anyone.” Wendell Eaton -
Frederick, Maryland


 

 
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