What is “Joint Preservation”?
By Steven Meier
Joint preservation is both a concept and a process.
The concept of joint preservation is, essentially, the attempt to restore and/or preserve as much of the natural anatomy of a joint as possible after injury. Whether a joint is injured due to athletic or exercise-related activity (such as running or tennis), physical trauma (such as falls or car accidents), or general wear-and-tear degeneration over time, the concept of joint preservation means that the treatment will be oriented toward restoration instead of replacement, whenever possible.
Joint preservation as a process refers to any treatment, surgical or non-surgical, aimed at preserving and/or restoring as much of the natural resources of the body’s joint(s) as possible. This could include surgical treatments such as cartilage regrowth and restoration, as well as partial instead of total joint replacements, and/or medical treatments such as joint viscosupplementation.
The goal of joint preservation is typically to relieve pain and to restore pain-free function to a patient’s natural articulation. Joint preservation as a process can involve a variety of treatments, including activity modifications, medication, physical therapy, injections, and surgery.
Dr. Steven Meier is an expert in the specialized field of joint preservation, and utilizes the proper combination of surgical and non-surgical treatments designed to achieve the best result for each individual patient’s needs.
To learn more about joint preservation and how it may be able to help you regain pain-free function in your body articulation points, contact us today at 310.736.2793 for orthopedic services and sports medicine.
Philosophy of Meier Orthopedic Sports and Regenerative Medicine
The overall philosophy of Meier Orthopedic Sports and Regenerative Medicine is to pursue a progressive approach to treatment in order to preserve the body’s natural joints. We believe that by doing this, we are able to reduce pain, increase mobility, and delay or prevent the need for joint replacement. We seek to preserve the organic structure and biologic materials of the joints through a combination of surgical and non-surgical techniques, including:
- Cartilage restoration/repair
- Ligament reconstruction
- Meniscus transplantation
- Physical Therapy Rehabilitation
- Biological Enhancement
- Viscosupplementation Therapy
Patients at Meier Orthopedic Sports and Regenerative Medicine are varied, including professional athletes, exercise enthusiasts, and those suffering from arthritis after motor vehicle accidents. Our goal in treating every patient is to determine what their optimal goal is, and to try to get them as close to that ideal as possible. Not everyone will be able to achieve the exact level of activity they were used to before their injuries, but we are experts at listening to the desires of the patient, and getting them back to functioning as pain-free as possible in their everyday lives.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What are the advantages of joint preservation over joint replacement?
A: The advantages of joint preservation are reductions in pain and inflammation, increased mobility, return to function, more natural range of motion and strength capabilities, and the delay or prevention of the need for full replacement/destruction of normal body anatomy.
Q: What surgical techniques do you offer at Meier Orthopedic Sports and Regenerative Medicine?
A: We offer a broad variety of surgical treatments for joint degeneration due to injury and/or arthritis. These procedures include cartilage restoration, ligament reconstruction, meniscus transplantation, and partial articulation replacement.
Q: What is osteoarthritis and who is most at risk?
A: Osteoarthritis is among the most common forms of arthritis. It refers to a condition in which the protective cartilage on the ends of the bones begins to wear down within the joint. This can occur from a history of traumatic injury to the joint, or simply due to the effects of aging. Osteoarthritis can affect any joint, but it is most common in the knees, hands, back, and hips. No cure exists for osteoarthritis, and the condition gradually gets worse over time. However, there are a variety of treatments available to slow the disease and improve the function of body articulation points. Those who are most at risk for osteoarthritis are people who have suffered joint injuries, women, the elderly, and people with congenital or acquired bone deformities. People who suffer from obesity can also be at risk for developing arthritis.
Q: What are the symptoms of joint degeneration?
A: Common symptoms of joint degeneration include joint stiffness that lasts longer than fifteen minutes, limitation of motion in joints, creaking or cracking in the joints, and swelling or tenderness in the body articulation points. Also, pain and stiffness after remaining in one position for an extended period of time can indicate injury to or degeneration of the body’s articulation points.
Learn more about joint preservation strategies from AAOS.org.
Contact a Doctor at Meier Orthopedic Sports and Regenerative Medicine
Do you suffer from joint pain or degeneration due to injury or arthritis? Is it causing you frequent pain or affecting your quality of life? Steven W. Meier, M.D. is one of the leading experts in joint preservation on the West Coast. Contact Meier Orthopedic Sports and Regenerative Medicine today at 310.736.2793 to get answers to all of your questions by scheduling a consultation with an expert.
Next, read our frequently asked questions for joint preservation.