A while back a reader wrote in because she was concerned about her doctor’s recent prognosis that the cartilage in her knees was breaking down to the point that only surgery to replace them will be the answer. Either that, or soon she wouldn’t be able to walk at all.
There are other doctors out there who disagree, though. Many go so far as to say that with the right support, supplements, and exercise, that the cartilage can be rebuilt, thereby avoiding the knife and very expensive surgery.
The reason cartilage deteriorates is usually due to three key causes:
-Arthritis or another similar disease process
-Wrong body positioning, placing excess stress on joints and cartilage
Whether you have started taking it or not yet, the supplement combination of glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate is a must. These two, especially together, both are effective at slowing and even stopping the progression of joint damage in most everyone who takes them.
They are very effective at putting out the fire in the single most damaging symptom of arthritis: inflammation.
There is even a growing body of evidence that they work to reverse the damage and promote the re-growth of cartilage throughout the body. The importance here is that there may be options other than surgery to not only prevent but heal this problem.
Other boxes that absolutely must be checked before accepting surgery as a viable option include losing the weight that might be killing you. Aside from the hypertension, risk of diabetes and cancer, and host of other ailments that are avoidable, it is absolutely imperative that your body weight get as close to ideal and healthy as possible.
Attaining a healthy weight will also aid in your recovery if you do opt for surgery.
Once you have your supplement and weight loss plans ready for execution, you want to get more information on the surgical alternatives that your doctor is offering.
There are two kinds of joint replacement: partial and total.
Your chances of avoiding the surgical suite altogether are much higher if you are a candidate for the partial. This means that, as in the case of the knee example, only a part of the joint will be replaced or reshaped, such as where the knee cap connects to the tibia or femur.
Even though these surgeries offer a much quicker recovery time than a total replacement, they still carry some risks that you will want to weigh carefully before consenting to the procedure. Looking at the risks and paired with alternatives, sometimes surgery isn’t the best option.
Risks include (but are not limited to):
-reaction to medications or prostheses
-deep vein thrombosis and other blood vessel issues
Alternatives, aside from those mentioned above, also would include physical therapy or chiropractics. These treatments can also offer some re-training on body positioning and mechanics to help you learn how to avoid some of the stress that is degrading your joints.
Equipment and other aides that reposition you or help you ambulate better can buy your body time to naturally rebuild its own cartilage. There are physicians who still believe that cartilage doesn’t regenerate like bone does, but some studies are proving them wrong.
One study listed in the Journal of Arthroscopic and Related Surgery followed more than 60 patients for over 12 years after experimental arthroscopy (less invasive than traditional uncompartmental knee replacement surgery) after implanting a paste of cartilage crushed from one part of the body into the damaged areas.
The study’s results showed that in almost 2/3 of the participants, they were able to re-grow viable, durable cartilage in the knee that was still intact more than 12 years after the procedure.
The body balance exercise in Christian’s Weight Loss Breeze and other programs are excellent to change the position of the body to stand and walk better and heal the knee.
For more information on naturally stopping and reversing the damage of arthritis, see my guide today. Arthritis Guide
by Shelly Manning