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Archive for February, 2012

 

How will magnetic therapy help reduce the knee pain associated with osteoarthritis?

Nerves generate electrical signals – this is well known.  Sodium and potassium constitute positive ions while chloride and calcium make up negative ions.  The nerves help keep a healthy balance of negative and positive ions so that there is a slightly negative charge.  When this balance of ions shift and the nerve becomes more positive than negative pain signals are sent to the brain.  A strong negative magnetic charge can reduce these pain signals.  The magnet must be strong and it must be placed with the negative side down.

 



 

Studies show that the human body functions through chemical reactions and electro-magnetic interactions. Electro-chimical ions comprise the majority of the chemicals within our bodies.  These ions have negative or positive charges, and react to electro-magnetic fields.

Biological processes can be effected by the contact, equilibrium, and movement of ions.   The channels the ions move within can affect bodily functions, like sleep and circulation.  Pharmaceuticals, electric stimulation, and magnetic therapy can all affect ions and ion channels.



How to Use a Cane

February 24, 2012


If you have arthritis in both knees, hold the cane in whichever hand feels most natural for you.  If your osteoarthritis effects one knee worse than the other, hold the cane on the side of the least amount of knee pain.  Move the cane with every step.  Your doctor or physical therapist should teach you how to do this.  The cane stays in place as the unaffected leg swings forward.  Move the cane when you move the leg that hurts most.



 

Magnet therapy is an old idea.  Ancient Greek, Egyptian, and Chinese cultures have all written about using magnets to treat health conditions from arthritis, to gout, to headaches.  NASA recognized how important magnetic fields are for life on our planet back in the 1960′s. From then until now artificial magnetic fields are used in space for the health of the astronauts.  Magnets assist in preserving bone mineral density, improving circulation, and improving the quality sleeping.  The artificial magnetic fields  reduced the effects of being away from the planet’s magnetic field.

Magnetic therapy has been an accepted treatment option for centuries.  The National Health Services of Britain recently began permitting physicians to start writing scripts for magnets.



 

A cane needs to be strong enough to support your weight, especially if you are experiencing knee pain – so choose wisely.  A small person can get away with an aluminum or wooden cane.  A large person may have no choice but to use a steel or titanium.  The tip is also important.  Make sure the rubber tip is not worn to ensure proper balance.



A statement was released  by The World Health Organization that there aren’t any health risks when static magnetic fields are used in magnetic therapy.    Magnetic therapy when used properly has never been reported to cause health problems.

Some people who use magnetic therapy to treat knee pain experience a warming sensation.  Their skin may sweat or tingle when they first begin using a magnetic knee brace. This is a normal reaction and is due to increased circulation.  Do not use magnets if you have a pacemaker or if you are pregnant.



Using a cane can make life easier for people with arthritis.  However when a cane is too short it will throw the user off balance and cause them to lean to one side.  If a cane is too long it will be awkward to walk with it and the cane will be harder to lift.  Generally speaking a cane should come up to the bend in your wrist.



 

Knee braces provide protection and stability.  Magnetic therapy helps relieve knee pain.  A magnetic knee brace is a treatment option worth considering if you suffer from knee arthritis.  This knee brace is not a cure but a tool to help patients get up and moving.  If patients can exercise a bit more hopefully they can lose weight to reduce the load on their knee joints.  A little exercise and some light stretching can go a long way at relieving knee pain.  Adding magnetic treatment can help.  No drugs, no surgery… it’s worth a try.



 

Choose a grip that feels right in your hand.  The type and size of the grip depends on you.  If you experience hand pain, wrist pain,  or have trouble when grasping things with your hands and fingers then try using a larger grip.  Canes are a great help for knee osteoarthritis.



The Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases published in November of 2011 that cane use can increase function and decrease knee pain in patients with knee osteoarthritis.

Patients with knee osteoarthritis were divided into two groups: a cane group and a non-cane group.  They were studied over a two-month period.  Data like energy expenditure, pain levels, and general health was gathered during six-minute walking tests.

The study concluded that patients will experience a decrease in pain and an increase in function by using a cane.  Also that prescriptions for canes need to take into consideration that patients will expend substantially more energy during their first month of cane use.  And then as the patient gets used to using a cane that energy level will taper off to inconsequential measures.

 

A.Jones, et al. Impact of Cane Use on Pain, Function, GEneral Health and Energy Expenditure During Gait in Patients with Knee Osteoarthritis: a Randomized Controlled Trial.   Annals of Rheumatic Diseases 2012;71:172-179 doi:10.1136/ard.2010.140178