Overview

Center-For-Health-Science-ArthritisOsteoarthritis occurs as the protective, cushiony cartilage covering the bones wears away, resulting in bones rubbing together. Rheumatoid arthritis affects the lining of your joints, causing a painful swelling that can eventually result in bone erosion and joint deformity.

Rheumatoid arthritis is the most severe type of inflammatory joint disease. It is an auto-immune disorder in which the body’s immune system attacks its own tissues, damaging joints and the surrounding soft tissue.

Scientists are finding that both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are autoimmune responses triggered by inflammation.  Medications may have benefit short term for reducing pain and inflammation, however they have little or no long term benefit.

Successful management of bone and joint conditions calls for a careful examination of the causes of inflammation and life-long treatment of those causes. Inflammation may be caused by pathogens (viruses, parasites, bacteria, etc.), environmental pollutants, allergies and hypersensitivities to certain foods and airborne particles, inadequate nutrition and by many drugs.

Anti-inflammatory drugs are the main weapon that conventional medical doctors prescribe for chronic inflammatory arthritis.  NSAIDs such as aspirin, ibupofen, and gold compounds, and steroid-based drugs such as corticosteroids and immuno-suppressive drugs are widely used.


Natural Treatment Approaches

The Western Naturopathic approach to arthritis utilizes phytonutrients and other natural agents to reduce pain and inflammation by blocking inflammatory enzymes such as 5-LOX and COX-2. Phytonutrients (supported by limited research) include turmeric, stinging nettle, ginger, devil’s claw and capsicum.

Antioxidants are recommended to reduce arthritis progression. Continuing limited research supports use of Vitamins C and E, beta-carotene and superoxide dismutase.

Structural modifying agents with positive although limited trials include glucosamine sulfate, shown to significantly improve symptoms of pain and functionality compared to placebo; chondroitin, shown to slow progression of osteoarthritis by modestly reducing joint-space narrowing; SAMe, shown to modestly improve articular cartilage growth and repair; and MSM (Methylsulfonylmethane) 3 grams orally twice daily to inhibit degenerative changes in joints.

Traditional Chinese Medicine
 approaches arthritis symptoms as “Bi syndrome,” which manifests as pain, soreness, or numbness of muscles, tendons and joints. Bi syndrome is influenced by the external factors of Wind, Cold, Heat, and/or Dampness. The symptoms manifested by the individual depend on which external pathogenic factor is strongest.

Wind pattern is characterized by movement of symptoms from place to place. In the case of Wind Bi, there is joint soreness and pain which moves from joint to joint. Movement of joints is limited, and there is often fever, as well as an aversion to wind, or windy weather. A thin white tongue coating and a floating pulse are signs that help Chinese medicine practitioners diagnose Wind Bi. Leading herbs for this pattern include ledebouriella (Fang Feng), and ephedra (Ma Huang).

The Cold pattern is characterized by severe pain in a joint or muscle. This pain has a fixed location, rather than moving about.  The pain is relieved by applying warmth to the affected area, but increases with exposure to cold. Movement of joints is limited.  A thin white tongue coating, combined with a wiry and tight pulse are signs of Cold Bi. Leading herbs for this pattern include aconite (Wu Tou), and ephedra (Ma Huang).

The Damp pattern is characterized by pain, soreness and swelling in muscles and joints, with a feeling of heaviness and numbness in the limbs.  The pain has a fixed location and is aggravated by damp weather. A white, sticky tongue coating and a soggy, slow pulse are signs of Damp Bi. Leading herbs for this pattern include coix (Yi Yi Ren) and lancea atractylodes (Cang Zhu).

The Heat pattern can develop from any of the above three patterns. It is characterized by severe pain and hot-red-swollen joints.  The pain is generally relieved by applying cold to the joints. Other symptoms include fever, thirst, anxiety, and an aversion to wind. A yellow, dry tongue coating and slippery, rapid pulse are seen with Hot Bi. Leading herbs for this pattern include anemarrhena (Zhi Mu), gypsum (Shi Gao), and cinnamon (Gui Zhi).

Gout (gouty arhritis) is generally considered as a bi zheng (painful obstruction syndrome) characterized by damp-heat.


Natural Remedies Herbal Remedies

CHS recommends 5 steps in your approach to Arthritis:

1. IDENTIFY: Take a thorough inventory of symptoms, medications and supplements.  CHS has prepared a “Symptom Checklist” for this –see tab above or Click Here for Printer Friendly Version to print out and take with you to your healthcare specialist.
2. TEST: Have a complete physical and specific tests to identify contributing causes.
3. EAT a healthy diet and lead a healthy lifestyle. Certain nutrients are less available in our foods due to modern farming methods. Additional nutrients are needed to combat environmental pollution and the stress of modern life. Eliminate all artificial ingredients including preservatives, colorings, “conditioners,” “enhancers” and processed foods and ingredients you suspect you react to.

4. CONSIDER a food rotation and elimination diet to identify foods and other substances that cause symptoms. Click Here for a guide to elimination dieting.

5. CHOOSE a Natural Product that matches your beliefs, physical issues and symptoms. Please visit HealthNotes.us for guidance.

Unsure what to order? Please call us, we can help! Call a CHS healthcare Professional at 714-886-9026, or  for guidance.


Statements contained herein have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat and cure or prevent disease. Information provided by CHS is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. Any information given is only intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from scientific world literature. You are encouraged to make your own health care decisions based upon your own research of the subject and in partnership with a qualified health care professional.

Science

Millions of people suffer the painful symptoms of arthritis and related diseases, which include inflammation, swelling, redness, pain and stiffness. There are literally hundreds of different kinds of arthritis (a catch-all term that simply means inflammation of the joints). Osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and gout are the three most common.

Osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis, is a chronic degenerative disease which occurs when cartilage in your joints wears down over time. While osteoarthritis can affect any joint in your body, the disorder most commonly affects joints in your hands, hips, knees, neck and lower back. Osteoarthritis occurs as the protective, cushiony cartilage covering the bones wears away, resulting in bones rubbing together. This friction causes joint pain and swelling, and worsens as the cartilage breaks down further.

Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disorder that most typically affects the small joints in your hands and feet. Unlike the wear-and-tear damage of osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis affects the lining of your joints, causing a painful swelling that can eventually result in bone erosion and joint deformity. An autoimmune disorder, rheumatoid arthritis occurs when your immune system mistakenly attacks your own body’s tissues. In addition to causing joint problems, rheumatoid arthritis can also affect your whole body with fevers and fatigue.

Gout is a complex form of arthritis characterized by sudden, severe attacks of pain, redness and tenderness in joints, often the joint at the base of the big toe. The affected joint is hot, swollen and so tender that even the weight of the sheet on it seems intolerable. Gout is marked by the body’s inability to rid itself of uric acid, a naturally forming substance. This buildup causes needle-like crystals in the joints which can be extremely painful. Gout most commonly affects the toes, knees and wrists. Gout is treatable, and there are ways to reduce the risk that gout will recur.

Arthritis and joint pain may be caused by a number of treatable conditions. All joint pain is treatable, and the progression of the various joint diseases may be slowed or stopped. Unfortunately many people assume they are suffering from normal aging or are afraid to explore causes.

The first step in treating bone and joint issues is to identify contributing factors including underlying hormonal imbalances, nutritional deficiencies, infections, hypersensitivities, medications and inflammation. Appropriate lab testing is central to developing an appropriate arthritis treatment plan.


Natural Remedies Herbal Remedies

CHS recommends 5 steps in your approach to Arthritis:

1. IDENTIFY: Take a thorough inventory of symptoms, medications and supplements.  CHS has prepared a “Symptom Checklist” for this –see tab above or Click Here for Printer Friendly Version to print out and take with you to your healthcare specialist.
2. TEST: Have a complete physical and specific tests to identify contributing causes.
3. EAT a healthy diet and lead a healthy lifestyle. Certain nutrients are less available in our foods due to modern farming methods. Additional nutrients are needed to combat environmental pollution and the stress of modern life. Eliminate all artificial ingredients including preservatives, colorings, “conditioners,” “enhancers” and processed foods and ingredients you suspect you react to.

4. CONSIDER a food rotation and elimination diet to identify foods and other substances that cause symptoms. Click Here for a guide to elimination dieting.

5. CHOOSE a Natural Product that matches your beliefs, physical issues and symptoms. Please visit HealthNotes.us for guidance.

Unsure what to order? Please call us, we can help! Call a CHS healthcare Professional at 714-886-9026, or  for guidance.


Statements contained herein have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat and cure or prevent disease. Information provided by CHS is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. Any information given is only intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from scientific world literature. You are encouraged to make your own health care decisions based upon your own research of the subject and in partnership with a qualified health care professional.

Symptoms Checklist

Symptom Checklist

Name: _________________________________   Date: ___________________

Print out, complete, take to your healthcare professional

Click Here for Printer Friendly Version

Frequency: 1- occasionally, 2- nearly every day, 3 most of the day, nearly every day

Severity- 1- mild 2- disrupts normal activities 3- Debilitating

How long:  1- one or 2 weeks 2- one to 3 months 3- One or more years

Symptom Frequency (1-3) Severity (1-3) How Long (1-3)
Cognitive:
Fatigue
Anxiety, Fearfulness, Irritability
Sleeping Difficulty
Sleeping Excess
Brain Fog, Slowed Thinking
Anger, Aggressive Behavior
Behavior or Personality Changes
Mood Swings, Lability
Apathy, Reduced Interests
Hallucinations, Delusions
Frequent Sadness, Crying
Easily Distracted
Memory Loss
Changes in Appetite
Unplanned Weight Changes
Confusion
Immune Process:
Asthma, Cough, Breathing Trouble
Frequent Yeast Infections
Allergies
Frequent Flu Symptoms
Immunity Depressed, Frequent Illness
Heart, Blood, Circulation:
Blood Pressure High/Low
High Cholesterol
Heart Palpitation, Rhythm Abnormality
Nervous System:
Carpal Tunnell Syndrome
Restless Leg Syndrome
Numbness or Tingling Extremities
Difficulty Walking, Poor Balance
Spasm, Muscle Tics, Trembling
Senses:
Dizziness
Vision Changes, Blurred Vision
Light Sensitivity
Tinnitus, Ringing, Ear Sounds
Cold Sensitivity, Cold Extremities
Excessive Sweating, Night Sweats
GI System:
Abdominal Pain
Abdominal Swelling
Colic
Frequent Constipation or Diarrhea
Excessive Thirst
Indigestion, Heartburn, Gas
Weight Gain
Nausea
Weight Loss or Poor Appetite
Ulcers
Frequent or Decreased Urination
Reproductive System:
Absence of Menstruation
Irregular Periods
Breast Pain, Tenderness
Infertility
Painful Intercourse, Dryness
Hot Flashes
Loss of Libido
Erectile Dysfunction
Pain:
Migraines, Headaches
Bone, Back or Leg Pain (skeletal)
Joint Pain
Muscle Pain
Achiness
Muscle Cramps
Muscle Weakness
Skin, Hair, Nails:
Mouth Ulcers, Canker Sores
Sores in Corners of Mouth
Dry, Brittle Hair
Hair Loss
Dry or Itchy Skin
Tender or Bleeding Gums
Acne
Eczema
Pale Skin
Skin Rash
Edema, Swelling
Please List Any Additional Symptoms:
Diagnoses received in past 2 years (include chronic conditions): 
List all medications used in last 2 years
List dosage size (mg), frequency, how long taken (months)
How did the medication affect you? (good and bad)
List all supplements used in last 2 years
List dosage size (mg), frequency, how long taken (months)
How did the supplements affect you? (good and bad)
Family: List illnesses experienced by family members in last 2 years, or if deceased, in last 2 years of life