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Body Talk - 23rd September

On the show tonight was Dr Christopher Kelsey, Consultant Rheumatologist, working at Spire Hartswood Hospital and based at Queens Hospital Romford. He was here to talk about Osteoporosis and Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Osteoporosis is a disease of the older generation, mainly affecting women after the menopause when bone density starts to be depleted. It isn't easily detected by presenting symptoms. If you know you have people in your family who were sufferers, or you have suffered from a series of fractures, then it is worth getting checked out. The procedure is relatively simple. Just visit your doctor, who will then send you for a scan. The scan takes about five minutes, and analyses the areas of the body that are most susceptible, hips, feet and arms.

The treatment is very effective, through the use of medication, the bone density can be stabilised and restored. Exercise is also therapeutic, particularly those exercises that are bone laoding, such as gym, running, walking, pilates , yoga and many more. Also, as ever, make sure you are getting a good balanced diet.

Rheumatoid Arthritis can affect people of any age, and again, is more common in women. It is thought to be the result of stress and hormonal influences. It shows up as stiffness in the joints. Often starting in the hands and fingers, and it doesn't wear off as the day goes on. Eventually it starts to cause swelling too. Early diagnosis is essential, as this disease can be very debilitating. At the moment there is no cure, but new drugs are coming out all the time which are proving to be more effective than ever in the treatment. Once more, diet and exercise are very important.

Dr Kelsey is an active figure in patient support groups for both of these conditions, and recommended that if you need to find out more search the internet for the National Osteoporosis Society , or the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society. If you don't have internet access then contact your doctor or Spire Hartswood.


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