‘Bones and Joints Matter’ health forum focuses on osteoarthritis

St. Gabriel’s Hospital in Little Falls is sponsoring a new “Your Health Matters” forum entitled, “Your Bones and Joints Matter,” from 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. Tuesday, in the Don Bargen Community Room of the Initiative Foundation in Little Falls.

The forum, which is free and open to the public, features two physicians and a physical therapist from St. Gabriel’s Hospital, who will discuss the latest treatments for osteoarthritis and answer questions from the audience. Serving on the panel are David Edgerton, DO, an orthopedic surgeon from Little Falls Orthopedics; Christopher Bell, MD, a specialist in family medicine from Family Medical Center; and April Thompson, PT, a licensed and certified physical therapist at St. Gabriel’s Hospital. The discussion will be moderated by Pat Rioux, manager of communications at the hospital.

Arthritis is a general term that describes inflammation in the joints. There are more than 100 forms of arthritis. Osteoarthritis, also called degenerative joint disease, is the most common type of arthritis. It is associated with the breakdown of cartilage in joints, most commonly in the hips, knees, spine and fingers. Osteoarthritis affects approximately 20 million people in the U.S. There is no cure for the disease, although new treatments are continually being developed.

Panelists will discuss the causes and symptoms of osteoarthritis as well as the latest treatments, including surgery, medications and exercise. There will also be discussion of the resources available locally to problems related to bones and joints and how to access those resources. Panel members will also take questions from the audience.

In addition to the panel discussion, there will be refreshments, prize drawings and, for those interested, two nursing contact hours for continuing education, at no cost to attendees.

For more information, contact Pat Rioux at St. Gabriel’s Hospital, (320) 631-5608.