Ayurveda views Osteoarthritis as a clinical condition which requires replenishment of lubrication around the affected joints, achievable through the process of bṛṁhaṇa (satiation). Osteoarthritis treatment in Ayurveda involves internal medications and external therapies, which are patient-specific and guided by the stage of the disease. The patient's response to treatment is determined by the duration and degree of the manifested disease, as well as their age and the cause of the condition. For example, Osteoarthritis of a degenerative cause and of recent onset can be reversed through natural treatment for osteoarthritis using specific medications and exercises, while patients with later-stage chronic symptoms will, at a minimum, see greatly reduced pain and an increased range of movement. At all stages, the progression of the degeneration can be arrested using Ayurvedic treatment for Osteoarthritis.
It should be clearly understood at the very outset that Osteoarthritis and Osteoporosis are common but two different conditions. While Osteoporosis causes bones to become fragile and prone to fracture, Osteoarthritis is a common, crippling and age-related degenerative condition, where the cartilage cushioning the joints wears down over time. It is the most common articular disease worldwide and one often hears of Osteoarthritis knee, Osteoarthritis ankle etc. Osteoarthritis typically affects joints of knees, spine, hips and hands. Osteoarthritis symptoms develop slowly and worsen over time. These include:
- Pain, in the affected joint during or after use, or after a period of inactivity
- Tenderness in the joint.
- Stiffness of the joint is experienced more while the person wakes up early in the morning or following a period of inactivity.
- Grating sensation while moving the joints
- Swelling in some cases
Osteoarthritis may first appear between ages 30 and 40, and is present in almost everyone by age 70. It occurs equally in both sexes up to the age of 55; after 55, the incidence is higher in women. It is estimated that approximately 4% of people are affected and in India the incidence of osteoarthritis in India is as high as 12 per cent. 45% of women over the age of 65 have symptoms of osteoarthritis, while radiological evidence shows OA in 70% of women above the age of 65. OA was estimated to be the 10th leading cause of non-fatal burden in the world in 1990, accounting for 2.8% of total YLD (Years lived with disease). In the Version 2 estimates for the Global Burden of Disease 2000 study, published in the World Health Report 2002(5), OA is the 4th leading cause of YLDs at global level.
Studies suggest that increasing age, BMI (body mass index) and history of more frequent physical activity in younger years were risk factors for knee OA.
Areas where the relief is not assured but significant relief can still be expected:
Osteoarthritis developed secondary to obesity and diabetes mellitus needs to be treated for the underlying disease initially, and their response to the treatment is variable.
In chronic and severe Osteoarthritis in which deformity has set in -and in those conditions where knee replacement has been advocated - treatment can give minimal benefits.
AyurVAID's treatment approach
As a disease of progressive nature, often requiring regular follow-ups, AyurVAID Hospitals typically recommends our Osteoarthritis Disease Management Program, based on Panchakarma principles, for maximum results. However, the treatment for Osteoarthritis does not necessarily require extensive therapies or medications. In many cases, a few key internal medications, along with some localized therapies, will suffice to relieve the disease. AyurVAID today stands tall as an Ayurveda Osteoarthritis Hospital in Bangalore, Karnataka; Kochi, Kerala; and Kalmatia, Kumaon Himalayas. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about the treatment program best for you.
While treating Osteoarthritis with ayurveda, the joints are the seats of śleṣaka kapha (lubricating substance), which facilitates the appropriate and effective mobility of these joints. Due to the aging process and other degenerative causes the vāta (one of the three humors that is responsible for all types of movements) increases generally, and in these sites. This in due course of time dessicates the lubricating substance. This is a condition termed as sandhigata vāta(osteo arthritis). This limits the range of activity of the joints, causing stiffness and pain.