Outside of deep sleep, your joints are constantly working, allowing you to function in the world around you. Thanks to this enormous workload, almost everyone encounters joint pain at some point in their lives.
Anytime your body is in pain, it’s protecting itself, so that is one message you ignore at your peril. This is especially true of your all-important joints — if you don’t properly address a joint issue, you can be left with long-term consequences, including mobility issues or ongoing pain.
Here at No Mercy Sports Medicine in Miami, Florida, Dr. Moisés Irizarry-Román is a musculoskeletal and sports medicine specialist who focuses on joint health. With his state-of-the-art diagnostic technology, including musculoskeletal ultrasound, Dr. Irizarry-Romàn can quickly diagnose your joint issue and ensure that you get on the road to sustainable joint health as quickly as possible.
Here’s a look at some of the many joint issues we’ve seen over the years and why a proper diagnosis and early intervention is paramount.
The complexity of your joints
The joints in your body, big or small, are typically complex areas where bones come together to provide you with movement. While the bones are at the heart of the joint, most problems occur in the connective tissues, including:
- Ligaments, which attach bone to bone
- Tendons, which attach muscles to bone
- Cartilage, which protects the bone
- Bursa sacs, which prevent friction between bones
- Supporting muscles
Because the cast of characters in your joints is quite large, there are numerous ways in which you can be left with joint pain.
The most common causes of joint pain
To simplify the potential culprits behind joint pain, we break it down here into two common conditions.
In the first category, musculoskeletal injuries, any number of problems can crop up, such as:
- Sprains or tears in your ligaments
- Partial or complete tendon tears
- Bone fractures
- Cartilage tears
From a sprained ankle to a rotator cuff tear in your shoulder, these types of injuries can occur suddenly or develop over time due to overuse.
There are more than 100 different types of arthritis. More concerning, over 92 million people in the United States report doctor-diagnosed arthritis or arthritis symptoms.
The most common form of arthritis is osteoarthritis (OA), which typically develops in the joints you use most — knees, hips, hands, and ankles. With OA, the cartilage in these joints progressively breaks down, leaving you with increasing joint pain and stiffness.
The importance of a proper diagnosis
When it comes to joint pain of any kind, there are no medals for gritting your teeth and pushing through the pain. In fact, you run the risk of creating far more damage in the joint if you don’t get proper treatment.
To give you an idea, let’s take the most common joint injury — a sprained ankle. Each year in the US, 2 million people sprain an ankle and up to a whopping 70% develop residual disability, including chronic ankle instability.
This is just one example of many of the perils of ignoring joint pain and failing to get a proper diagnosis and treatment. Instead, we urge you to come see as soon as possible.
With our ultrasound technology, which excels in viewing soft tissues, we can determine what’s wrong with your joint and recommend the best treatment plan for, literally, moving forward. Following your diagnosis, your treatment plan might include:
- Joint injections
- Regenerative medicine, including stem cell therapy and platelet-rich plasma injections
- Physical therapy
If you have a joint that’s bothering you, don’t wait. Get a proper diagnosis and proper treatment. Contact No Mercy Sports Medicine in Miami today by calling the office at 305-614-6757.