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How Should I Treat My Hand Pain?

By    |   Tuesday, 08 Apr 2014 10:04 AM

Question: I am 75 years old and have a family history of osteoarthritis (maternal side only). About 15 years ago I started getting severe pain in my hands and my fingers became severely twisted. I take 500 milligrams of acetominophen every day, but it isn't helping.  What do you recommend, other than taking more drugs?

Dr. Hibberd's answer:
 
Injured joints are often where osteoarthritic changes begin and take hold. The question is whether your fingers were injured before they became twisted or became misshapen because of rotational deformities that have developed. Rotational deformities are more likely related to bone and joint erosion from destructive arthritis (such as rheumatoid arthritis), and are less common commonly seen even with severe inflammatory osteoarthritis.
 
Your daily dose of acetaminophen is insufficient for controlling joint pain, even if related to osteoarthritis, and will do nothing to control destructive arthritis such as rheumatoid arthritis. I recommend you see your physician for a directed evaluation and films of your hands to evaluate you for inflammatory or destructive arthritis. Sometimes a picture speaks a thousand words. In the meantime, consider adjusting your Tylenol dose up to 500 milligrams three to four times a day, if you are otherwise healthy, to help control your pain.

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Injured joints are often where osteoarthritic changes begin and take hold.
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2014-04-08
Tuesday, 08 Apr 2014 10:04 AM
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