During the physical exam, your physician may feel around the joint to locate the cause of your pain. Your physician may also request imaging tests to observe your bones and joints.
Osteophytes are generally not painful, but accompanying arthritis may be. If you are in pain, pain relievers like ibuprofen or paracetamol, which you can purchase from a pharmacy, may assist. Ibuprofen is an NSAID (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug) that may aid with inflammation and swelling.
Moreover, if you are obese, losing weight will benefit you by reducing your joint strain. A physiotherapist may assist you by providing exercises to strengthen the muscles around the problem region and by assisting in the improvement of your range of motion.
Surgery is occasionally used to treat underlying arthritis in the joint. It may be beneficial if you have osteoarthritis in your joints, knees, or hips, especially those near the base of your thumb.
Unless an osteophyte irritates a nerve in the spine or reduces the range of motion of a joint, it is typically not necessary to remove it.
If you ever have surgery to remove an osteophyte, your surgeon will discuss the risks and advantages of the treatment to you.