The impact of arthritis in Canada and the best treatment options

On October 27, 2021, the Arthritis Alliance of Canada (AAC) released its report entitled “The impact of arthritis in Canada: today and over the next 30 years”.1 This report tells us that over 4.4 million Canadians suffer from osteoarthritis, and that this number is expected to rise to 10 million in 30 years time. The consequences of this chronic disease are serious in terms of health and costs for all Canadians. We must act now to reduce the burden of arthritis. 4 strategies have been identified: improving access to joint replacement surgery, reducing obesity rates, developing an osteoarthritis pain management strategy, and implementing effective and inexpensive methods of early diagnosis and treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.

For their part, the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) and the American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons (AAHKS) have published: Clinical practice guidelines on the optimal timing of elective total hip or knee arthroplasty for patients with symptomatic moderate to severe osteoarthritis or osteonecrosis who have failed non-surgical treatment2. The panel’s key messages were as follows:

1. The decision to proceed with total joint arthroplasty must be made as part of a shared decision-making process between physician and patient, during which the risks and benefits specific to each patient are taken into account.

2. Do not delay total arthroplasty to pursue additional non-operative treatment, including physiotherapy, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, ambulatory aids, and injections.

3. Delay surgery to stop or reduce nicotine use and improve glycemic control in patients with diabetes.

For over 20 years, the surgeons at Clinique Orthopédique Duval have been committed to improving access to hip and knee arthroplasty for all Canadians, and support the opinions of the AAC, ACR and AAHKS. Clinique Duval is the Canadian reference for hip and knee joint replacement in the private sector.

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