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Doctors Explain How To Keep Joints Healthy

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BALTIMORE (WJZ) — With the warmer weather comes more people exercising.  But with an aging population, pain keeps many from doing what they love.

Andrea Fujii explains how to keep older joints healthy. 

Stuart Lumsden is only riding now because he’s replaced both hips.

“I knew something was going to be necessary because I couldn’t reach my toes,” said Lumsden.

At 56, he’s one of the many baby boomers around the country who’ve received joint replacement surgeries.

But Dr. Michael Mont, orthopedic surgeon with Sinai Hospital, says surgery isn’t the only option.

“You should always try to forestall the need for an artificial joint, try to keep what nature gave you,” said Mont.

Some patients opt for joint saving treatments, including getting to a doctor early. There are cartilage producing and saving injections instead of surgery, anti-inflammatory shots or medications.  There’s also exercise to reduce joint stress.

“About 40 percent of our U.S. population is obese, and that is leading to a higher incidence of arthritis in the knee and hip,” said Mont.

Medical journals report more than half of all replacement surgeries are expected to be people under age 65.

There are now about 1 million replacement surgeries. By 2016, that number is expected to double.

Surgery was the best option for Lumsden who can now peddle without pain.

To learn more about joint replacement or alternative treatments, click here.

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