Return to Index
Talking to Your Doctor About Osteoarthritis
- Bring someone else with you. It helps to have another person hear what is said and think of questions to ask.
- Write your questions ahead of time, so you don't forget them.
- Write down the answers you get, and make sure you understand what you are hearing. Ask for clarification, if necessary.
- Don't be afraid to ask your questions or ask where you can find more information about what you are discussing. You have a right to know.
- Do my symptoms suggest that I have OA?
- Could these symptoms be caused by any other joint diseases?
- What kind of tests, if any, will I need?
- When can I expect to feel improvement from the treatment?
- What comfort measures (such as heat or cold) might be helpful?
- Should I consider other treatments, such as corticosteroid injections or hyaluronic acid injections?
- Should I consider any surgical procedures?
- What is likely to happen without treatment?
What medications can I take to reduce pain and improve my ability to function normally?
- What are the benefits/side effects of these medications?
- Will these medications interact with other medications, over-the-counter products, or dietary or herbal supplements that I am already taking?
- Are there any alternative or complementary therapies that will help me?
- Do I need to lose weight?
- What is a healthy target weight that I should work to maintain?
- What kinds of exercise should I do to increase my muscle strength?
- Are there exercises that may help me feel better?
- Are there exercises or athletic activities that I should avoid because they overly stress my joints?
- Could my occupation be contributing to my joint disease and symptoms?
- How much rest should I get?
- Are there any assistive devices that might help me continue to function independently?
- Do I need to take supplements or vitamins?
- What is the usual progression of OA?
- How can I slow or halt the progression of OA?
- Do I have to give up or change any of my activities now or in the future?
- Reviewer: Warren A. Bodine, DO, CAQSM
- Review Date: 05/2016
- Update Date: 05/20/2015