Treating osteoarthritis. Maximising outcomes.
AfP | Published : 1998
BACKGROUND: Osteoarthritis is a common cause of disability in our community, particularly in the elderly. OBJECTIVE: The aim of treatment in those with osteoarthritis should be the relief of pain and maintenance of function with minimal risk of side effects. DISCUSSION: Non pharmacological therapy, tailored to the individual, should be the first line treatment of osteoarthritis patients. Paracetamol may be added if necessary. Non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs should only be used after assessing the patient for the risk of side effects. If the risk is high then alternative therapy should be sought, or measures taken to minimise the risk.