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Arthritis

A significant percentage of aging athletes and seniors over age 55 will ultimately require treatment for arthritis. While there are numerous forms of arthritis that can be treated by PST, one of the most common forms of arthritis that is responsive to PST is osteoarthritis (degenerative joint disease). Osteoarthritis (OA) generally involves the degeneration of hips and knees, though any joint is potentially susceptible to arthritis. In fact, 30 percent of the general population over 55, and at least 50 percent over age 65, experience pain and lost mobility as a result of osteoarthritis. Additionally, an even higher percentage of patients who have had an injury will develop OA.

OA is characterized by progressive loss of cartilage with reactive changes at the joint margins and subchondral bone. Typically, there is a reduction in volume, solubility, density or strength of joint cartilage. Without the natural cushion provided by the cartilage, patients with OA generally experience joint pain caused by bone-on-bone contact. The affected joint is aggravated by use and eased by rest. Typically, patients will have morning stiffness, discomfort at night, and in the later stages of the disease, joint instability and/or locking may occur.

OA patients fall into a cycle that is hard to break. Pain causes a reduction in physical activity. Reduced activity leads to weight gain and loss of muscle, which not only intensifies the patient's joint problem, but also compromises his or her general health.

The traditional treatment for arthritis consists of:

  • Weight reduction to reduce the strain on the joint
  • Rest or bracing of the affected area
  • Exercise to bulk up the muscles around the joint to protect it
  • Over-the-counter or prescription anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Corticosteroid injections, and ultimately...
  • Joint replacement surgery

Patients referred to an orthopedic surgeon for evaluation will often be recommended for surgery. The rate of joint replacement surgeries in the US is at an all-time high, and the costs are staggering. While the success rate of operative treatment is good, the surgery is invasive, expensive, and results in permanent changes to the natural characteristics of the affected joint, to accommodate the artificial components implanted in the body. Additionally, replacement joints typically wear out after 10-15 years, so many patients outlive their joint and require a second surgery. The outcome the second or third time around is almost never as good, and the risks of surgery are inherently greater with age. Sometimes, the risks are too great for the patient to tolerate surgery, and the worn out joint cannot be replaced - drastically changing the patient's mobility and quality of life.

PST treatment is an alternative to surgery that is

  1. non-invasive,
  2. pain-free for most patients, and
  3. far less expensive.

The procedure, which involves nine one-hour treatments, eliminates the risks of surgery as well as the extensive post surgical rehabilitation. Eighty percent of patients receiving PST therapy experience benefits that can delay or eliminate the need for surgery. (Read about the research)

 

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