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Here’s a story from NJ.com that I wanted to share with everyone:

Philadelphia ranked as most painful city for arthritis sufferers
By Carly Romalino
March 01, 2010

For aches and pains, Philadelphia is at the top of the list, according to an arthritis relief supplement manufacturer.

Flexcin, an all-natural arthritis supplement, released findings that Philadelphia is the second-largest city for arthritis sufferers, second only to Chicago.  

According to spokesman John Sternal, the company annually compiles the numbers of inquiries and orders for the vitamin from all over the world, and Philadelphia moved up the rank from number five in 2009 to the second most-painful city in the country in 2010.

"We have been doing this for several years now. We take a combination of all that, and take the pulse of arthritis sufferers all over the place," Sternal said. "It gives a pretty good reading on who is feeling the effects."

Although Sternal is not sure what contributes to the high number of arthritis sufferers in this area, Underwood-Memorial Hospital's Dr. Raymond Adelizzi has a few theories that could account for Philly's rank.

Adelizzi, who performed his own survey, found that during spells of bad weather, 50 percent of arthritis sufferers polled noticed a definite relationship between cold, damn conditions and their pain.  

"It's not necessarily when it's raining or snowing, it's beforehand," said Adelizzi, who practices in Woodbury. "Rapid changes in atmospheric pressure could sometimes cause joint pain."

Arthritis has dozens of causes, but the pain comes from damage to joint cartilage, whether it's worn down or due to inflammatory conditions like rheumatoid, according to Adelizzi. Sometimes the cartilage gets worn down so severely that the joint bones rub against each other, causing agonizing pain.

Sternal, who is based in Florida, said he often hears pain complaints when it rains. In the Northeast, snowier-than-usual conditions when Flexcin's survey was conducted in January could account to the high number of requests for the supplement, which Sternal said works to rebuild the cartilage that is lost in the joints.

Adelizzi also theorized that requests could be due to the state of the economy. Some sufferers may not have health insurance, which leaves patients with expensive payments for doctor visits or prescriptions.

"It's economical," Adelizzi said. "Instead of seeing and getting a prescription drug, they get something over-the-counter."

Adelizzi said patients often try simple OTC remedies like Aleve (naproxen) and Motrin (ibuprofen) for pain relief, or supplements like Flexcin or Glucosamine-Chondroitin caplets that can cost between $8 to $40 versus prescription drugs that can cost up to hundreds without insurance.

"Especially in tough financial times, if they can't see the doctor, they go to the health store and find these products," said Adelizzi, who said a patient recently told him of their use of Australian Dream arthritis cream.




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