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Talking to Your Doctor about Osteoarthritis

Last updated 4 years ago

Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis, affecting nearly 30 million Americans. This condition is characterized by a breakdown of the cartilage cushioning your joints; as a result, you may experience pain, stiffness, and swelling. Discussing your symptoms with your orthopedic doctor is an important step in the management of osteoarthritis so you can enjoy a higher quality of life.

Make a List

Prior to your orthopedic appointment, make a list of questions you want to ask, concerns you may have, and symptoms you want to mention. Having this information at your fingertips when you see your orthopedic physician can help you get more out of your appointment because you won’t forget to address any of your concerns. Additionally, make a list of any medications and supplements, prescription or otherwise, that you are taking. Your doctor will need to see this list to evaluate your current health and before prescribing any additional medications.

Ask for Clarification

At any time during your discussion, don’t be afraid to ask your doctor for additional clarification. If you become confused, stop your doctor and tell him you don’t understand. Your orthopedic appointment is for your benefit, so you should leave feeling like you understand your condition better, rather than feeling confused. Taking notes and repeating back what your doctor has said can ensure you are both on the same page regarding your condition and care.

Tell the Truth

Although your physician may ask personal or potentially embarrassing questions, it is important to be truthful when you reply. This may include questions about your sexual activity, drug and alcohol use, diet, and medical history. Many lifestyle factors can have an impact on your orthopedic health; thus, your doctor needs a complete picture of your heath.

The Center for Joint and Spine Care at South Bay Hospital offers top-quality orthopedic care including joint replacement, arthroscopic surgery, and arthritis management and care. We invite you to click through our comprehensive website to learn more about your joint health, or call (888) 685-1595 for a physician referral today.


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