Living Well seminar: Arthritis and Joint Pain

Dr. John Badylak

Dr. John Badylak

Marie Milleage

“Living with arthritis or joint pain is not an inevitable part of aging,” is the message relayed by Dr. John Badylak at the September Living Well seminar. Arthritis affects one in five individuals and is the leading cause of disability for two-thirds of Americans under the age of 65.

If you experience increasing shoulder pain when swimming or playing tennis, or knee or hip pain when walking or playing golf, your frequent activities may be changing and limiting.

In his presentation, Dr. Badylak clarified rheumatoid arthritis as an autoimmune disease wherein the body’s immune system attacks and destroys the joint capsule, cartilage and joint surface. His focus was on osteoarthritis caused by factors of aging, heredity, weight gain, wear and tear and traumatic and repetitive stress injuries. This disease results in bone-on-bone contact with limiting and restrictive movements affecting one’s quality of life.

Several nonsurgical methods of care do not involve taking drugs, for example, physiotherapy, weight reduction, specific exercises, massage and acupuncture. Alternative treatments are pain relievers, whether over the counter acetaminophens or glucosamine chondroitin, or prescription pain medications available as Celebrex, Voltaren and others, or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to treat inflammation comparable to ibuprofen.

For more severe cases of osteoarthritis, Dr. Badylak explained how a fluid is injected directly into the joint. This nonsurgical, non-drug treatment restores natural fluids to cushion and lubricate the joint and offer better movement and functionality.

Is it time to consider joint replacement when none of these methods relieve chronic pain, stiffness and swelling? Many people say “yes” and consider surgical replacement as the best option for pain relief, improved mobility and the return to normal activities. Dr. Badylak described different approaches to surgery depending on the affected joint. The surgical goal takes into consideration tissue disruption and anticipated restrictions during recovery and rehabilitation.

Patient considerations are anticipated relief from pain and stiffness, benefits and risks of replacement surgery, the length of time it takes for recovery and rehabilitation and the resumption of leisure and sport activities. The goals of rehabilitation are improved muscle strength, increased flexibility and movement in the joint and more freedom to participate in everyday activities.

More than 50 residents attended the program and were able to pick up the handouts and supplements distributed by Dr. Badylak’s colleagues. DATCU credit union provided refreshments and door prizes for the seminar.

Living Well seminars are free and open to Robson Ranch residents. Advanced registration is required. For more information please contact Marie Milleage at or view the website

All content within presentations sponsored by the Living Well at Robson Ranch Committee is intended for general information only. It should not be treated as a substitute for the medical advice of a professional health care provider. Neither the Living Well at Robson Ranch Committee, Robson Ranch Denton HOA, nor Robson Communities is responsible or liable for the content and do not endorse any commercial product or service mentioned or advised in any presentation.