Clinical signs of degenerative joint disease include lameness, joint swelling, and muscle atrophy (wasting) among others.
Treatments can be medical or surgical. Nonsurgical therapies include weight reduction, controlled exercise on soft surfaces, and therapeutic application of warm compresses to affected joints. NSAIDs (eg, aspirin, etodolac, carprofen, deracoxib, meloxicam, firocoxib, tepoxalin) reduce pain and inflammation. Caution is advised with long-term NSAID usage in dogs. The most frequently cited adverse effects include GI problems such as inappetence, vomiting, and hemorrhagic gastroenteritis.
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