Herbal remedies/ bone spurs
by Nathan Wei, MD, FACP, FACR
Nathan Wei is a board-certified rheumatologist and author of the Second Opinion Arthritis Treatment Kit. It's available exclusively at this website... not available in stores.
Click here: Second Opinion Arthritis Treatment Kit
Bone spurs are due to abnormal growths on a bone.
Bone spurs occur in two situations. One type arises near a joint with osteoarthritis or degenerative joint disease. Here, the cartilage has been worn away and the bone responds by growing extra bone at the margins of the joint surface. These "spurs" are called "osteophytes."
The second type of bone spur is the kind that occurs when the attachment of ligaments or tendons to bone become calcified. These can occur on the bottom part of the heel, around the Achilles tendon, and in the coracoacromial ligament of the shoulder.
Bone spurs, or osteophytes, are bony projections that form along joints are often seen in osteoarthritis. Bone spurs cause limitation in joint motion and can cause pain by irritating the joint capsule. Bone spurs can occur in any joint but are often seen in the shoulders, back, knees, and hips.
The reason for bone spur formation is that the body is trying to increase the surface area of the joint to better distribute weight across a joint surface that has been damaged by arthritis.
Spinal arthritis or osteoarthritis of the facet joints is a common problem due to bone spurs. This condition is a cause of back pain in the older patient population. It can cause stiffness and lower back pain that is usually worse in the morning, gets better after moving around, then gets worse again at the end of the day.
Enlargement of the bone spurs can sometimes lead to narrowing of the spinal canal and result in spinal stenosis. This condition can cause nerve pinching, leading to pain down the legs that is worse when the patient stands and walks, and is better with sitting.
Back pain or neck pain is very common as osteoarthritis leads to inflammation of the facet joints. Secondarily, the neck and back muscles become irritated. Patients usually complain of:
•Dull pain in the neck or lower back when they stand or walk.
•Radiating pain into the shoulder blades or upwards into the back of the head if the cervical spine is affected, and down into the buttocks and thigh if the lumbar spine is affected.
•Symptoms worsen with activity and often improve with rest. Lumbar arthritis symptoms often improve when an individual is bending forward and flexing at the waist, such as leaning over a shopping cart or over a cane.
As the nerves become compressed, patients complain of several symptoms including:
• Pain in one or both arms or legs.
• Numbness or tingling.
• Progressive weakness.
If the arthritic processes and stenosis is severe, progressive bowel and bladder dysfunction occurs.
Heel spurs develop as an abnormal growth in the heel bone due to calcium deposits that form when the plantar fascia pulls away from the heel. This stretching of the plantar fascia is usually the result of over-pronation (flat feet), but people with unusually high arches (pes cavus) can also develop heel spurs.
Diagnosis is usually made by physical examination. Other tests used to diagnose arthritis, trauma, and bone spur formation include:
•Electrical tests are commonly performed to document the degree and severity of spinal nerve injury. The EMG and nerve conduction test (EMG/NCV) tests can exclude peripheral nerve compression such as carpal tunnel syndrome.
•Computerized tomography (CT scans)and/or MRI scans can provide details about the spinal architecture and the degree of nerve compression.
Alternative and Herbal remedies:
•Hot linseed oil packs.
•Ice massages on the bottoms of the feet can be helpful.
• Dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO), applied topically to the affected area, has been touted by some. Note: Only DMSO from a health food stores should be used. Commercial-grade DMSO found in hardware stores may be toxic.
•Arnica and chamomile
Natural anti-inflammatory supplements which may be of help are whole leaf, cold processed aloe vera juice, glucosamine sulfate, shark cartilage, bromelain, evening primrose oil, and kelp.
Other Herbal Remedies:
•Rose hip and horsetail tea.
•Curcumin has been reported to be equally effective as corticosteroids without any of the associated side-effects.
•Apply a flax seed hot pack.
Get more information about herbal remedies bone spurs as well as...
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Second Opinion Arthritis Treatment Kit
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