Expert Advises Arthritis Patients On Exercise, Injection As Treatment

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Nigerians suffering from arthritis have been advised to engage in regular exercise as part of management of the ailment which is important in all the stages.

Mr. Chijioke Ofili, Physiotherapist and Medical Practice Manager, Nikea Consultants Ltd., said on Sunday that the first line of management was walking and swimming.

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“The first line of management will be exercise programmes including walking and swimming.

“The second will be an injection to the knee; not just steroids, rather the ones with constituents and fluids mimicking the natural knee joint fluids,’’ he said.

According to him, the third line of management may be knee arthroscopy and the last may be total knee replacement called Knee Arthroplasty.

Knee arthroscopy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure.

He said that exercises as part of management were important in all the stages and lines of management.

Ofili said that it was important that an exercise programme for knee osteoarthritis should not cause a significant increase in knee pain while doing or following the movements.

“In order to keep your knee comfortable, and to get the best results from an exercise programme, particular attention to technique, leg positioning, amount of weight and range of knee movement may be required,’’ he said.

According to him, an exercise for knee osteoarthritis should contain a mixture of cardiovascular exercise, important for maintaining overall fitness and weight management.

“Commonly, people with knee osteoarthritis find an exercise bike to be a good option as its non-weight-bearing and encourages knee movement.

“Cycling has the added benefit of helping flush synovial fluid around the knee, which helps keep the joint surfaces lubricated and is good for the health of the articular cartilage.

“Swimming is also another cardiovascular exercise option people with knee osteoarthritis commonly find beneficial,” Ofili said.

He said that strength exercises included the front of thigh, buttocks calves and hamstrings.

Ofili said there should be a mixture of isolated muscle group exercises and combined or functional exercises. (NAN)

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