Alternative Ways to Easing Arthritis Pain (cont.)

Getting Started

Though more and more doctors are themselves investigating the benefits of alternative therapies and have no objections if their patients try some, most of them still suggest first following the medical guidelines for the treatment of osteoarthritis released by the American College of Rheumatology and the American Pain Society.

Begin with treatments such as exercise and weight loss, the guidelines advise, in combination with over-the-counter acetaminophen as directed by your personal physician.

"Try the simplest and cheapest regimen first," says Litman. "That should be your first line of defense."

Published Oct. 3, 2005.

SOURCES: Deborah Litman, MD, clinical assistant professor, Georgetown University. Larry Altshuler, MD, board-certified internist. Jason Theodosakis, MD, assistant clinical professor, University of Arizona College of Medicine. Erin Arnold, MD, Illinois Bone and Joint Institute. University of Maryland Medical Center web site: "Osteoarthritis Sufferers Seek Complementary Care." Arthritis Foundation: "Guide to Alternative Therapies." Vignon, E. Arthritis & Rheumatism, September 2003; vol 48: p S77. Reginster, J. Lancet, January 2001; vol 357: pp 251-256. WebMD Medical News: "Modest Arthritis Benefit Seen from MSM." Pavelka, J. Osteoarthritis and Cartilage, October 2004; vol 12: p S74. Tod Cooperman, MD, president Kerry Ludlam, spokeswoman, Arthritis Foundation National Office.

© 2005 WebMD Inc. All rights reserved.

Last Editorial Review: 11/4/2005