Why Does My Joint Hurt?
Joint pain is a pain that often cannot be ignored. People often do not realize how often they use a joint until it starts hurting. The simple act of walking or getting off the couch can result in discomfort if a joint is arthritic or painful. Joints can hurt for many reasons.Most healthy joints have cartilage which is a smooth rubbery connective tissue that cushions two bones from rubbing against one another. There is also a membrane called synovium that produces a thick fluid that helps keep the cartilage healthy. Cartilage does not have nerve endings and does not feel pain. With injury or wear and tear, the cartilage gets worn down and starts to expose the underlying tissue that does have nerve endings and the ability to feel pain. Once this layer gets exposed, it can induce an inflammatory response that stimulates not only the nociceptive fibers (pain sensing nerves) to send a signal of pain, but also a destructive process that leads to worsening joint destruction. This process ultimately leads to pain and arthritis. Once bone surfaces come in direct contact with each other, it results in additional inflammation and pain but also in the formation of osteophytes or bone spurs which can disfigure joints. The synovium can also become inflamed and produce extra fluid within the joint and lead to swelling and pain.
Joints are also supported by ligaments and tendons that help them stay in alignment and stable. Injury to the joint can stretch the ligaments and lead to increased movement in the joint or a malalignment of the joint. If there is excessive movement in a joint or an uneven distribution of force on a joint, in can result in increased inflammation and pain. It can also interfere with athletic performance. Balancing muscular strength on each compartment of a joint and tightening up ligaments with prolotherapy or bracing can lead to a more balanced joint and less pain. It is important to keep the big picture in mind during our Albuquerque joint pain clinic treatments and to not forget to balance the whole body alignment if possible. Everyone has had a limb that hurt at one point in time and noticed how they often offload this joint and put strain on other joints. This can be a slippery slope and lead to pain in other parts of the body as well.
When treating damage at our Albuquerque joint pain clinic, we utilize different modalities from exercise programs, physical therapy referrals, steroids, visco-supplementation, prolotherapy, manipulation, regenerative medicine and more, to ensure the most accurate and effective treatment for our patients. We understand that each patient and the circumstances they face are all different, which is why we take the time to create an Albuquerque knee and shoulder pain treatment plan or joint damage therapy that is uniquely tailored to individual needs.