Gregory Kaplan

Gregory Kaplan, Physical Therapist with West Kendall Baptist Hospital, explains in a normal knee joint there is good spacing within the joint, but where the arthritis is present there is some breakdown of the bone, which will lead to pain.

About treatment, he says if it is too painful, joint replacement can be an option and he recommends speaking to your orthopedic physician about that. Gregory Kaplan, Physical Therapist with West Kendall Baptist Hospital, explains arthritis is an inflammation in the joint that affects the bone, the cartilage, the capsule, the ligaments and the muscles in the area.

Some of the symptoms of arthritis are pain in joints that does not go away, warmth and redness in joints, swelling, stiffness, and trouble moving joints in a normal way. Kaplan says people have stiffness in the joint, because the body’s natural reaction is limiting movement to not inflame that area anymore. Gregory Kaplan, Physical Therapist with West Kendall Baptist Hospital, says there are three types of exercises for people who suffer from arthritis: therapeutic exercise, rehabilitative exercise, and recreational exercise.

He explains therapeutic exercise is low-level, it is to manage inflammation and decrease pain; and rehabilitative exercise is to rebuild strength. Gregory Kaplan, Physical Therapist with West Kendall Baptist Hospital, explains cracking their knuckles won’t give you arthritis, but it can be a sign of instability in the joint. It releases pressure on that joint, it is a temporary relief. “It is not addressing the main avenues you really need to address as far as strengthening the muscles, working on a range of motion that would provide benefit.”

He also says some common areas with arthritis are knees, hips, shoulders, hands, and along the spine. Gregory Kaplan, Physical Therapist with West Kendall Baptist Hospital, explains between 17% and 21% of the entire population of Florida is affected by arthritis, which shows how common it is for individuals to suffer from arthritis.

He also says about 60 million individuals are affected across the U.S., it is something that affects everybody. He points out as we age, we are more prone to develop it, and women have greater odds than men to have it. Gregory Kaplan, Physical Therapist with West Kendall Baptist Hospital, says after a surgery because of arthritis, physical therapy assists in the recovery and people are able to get up, move and start walking the same day.

He explains after a hip surgery, a generally healthy person can recover after 2 or 3 weeks of physical therapy. “It depends on what it is you are trying to return to. The daily activities will come back pretty quickly.” Gregory Kaplan, Physical Therapist with West Kendall Baptist Hospital, says osteoarthritis in the hips is not as common as it is in the knees and the hands. Some of its symptoms are inflammation in the hip joint and also in the lower back or spine, and narrowing of the space within the joints.

He explains the body has a great way of continuing to adapt so you can still perform the movement, but it may be not in the right way. He recommends paying attention to your body and noticing when changes are occurring.

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