Knee pain can be caused by osteoarthritis in the knee joints. It’s among the most common types of arthritis in the knees, and the odds of developing the condition rise quite a bit after someone turns 45. The Arthritis Foundation has found that around 27 million United States citizens or visitors are affected by this type of arthritis – also most commonly affecting the knees of this population. Various things can cause knee osteoarthritis – years of running and exercise, and general wear-and-tear of living make the top of the list.
While there are many different types of arthritis, osteoarthritis (or OA) is the most common type, as mentioned earlier. No one has to go through this kind of knee pain alone.
While osteoarthritis is the technical term for this condition, it can also be referred to as the wear-and-tear arthritis. This is due to the breaking down of the cartilage between the bones that make of the knee joint. The cartilage offers cushioning between the bones, and over time, the cartilage begins to grind and break down. This breakdown causes the joints to go stiff and causes pain.
There are two kinds of OA: primary and secondary. Primary is the kind that develops with age; however, not everyone will develop primary OA with age. Secondary OA is more often developed early in life. It occurs years after obesity, inactivity, genetics, injury, or even other diseases have made themselves known in life.
Often, osteoarthritis affects the hands, lower back, hips, knees, and even the neck. While there is no permanent knee pain relief when dealing with OA, learning to deal with the pain is crucial. Despite this, people with some conditions are more likely to develop the condition. They include:
The symptoms vary from person to person. However, most people experience some sort of swelling or cracking in the joints. The joint that is being affected might be completely stiff if not used for a long period of time. Some are left completely debilitated by their OA. Commonly, the person may go years between OA episodes.
Do not be discouraged! There are ways to experience knee pain relief, though they will not be permanent. These treatments aren’t usually difficult or complicated, and can include injections or exercises (from aerobic to stretching, and usually in water since it’s easier for those suffering OA). Water workouts are often the easiest for patients with OA because it’s less stress on the knees. However, patients should make sure they talk to their doctors before pursuing the injections or work outs to be sure that it will be safe for them.
Injections are often popular. The hyaluronan injections are the most common, and can include:
The injections are meant to help joints affected by OA move easier. They allow the person to enjoy activity and being mobile again. The injection is pretty much a lubricant to allow the bones to move across each other easily – especially if the cartilage is completely gone. However, only patients with mild or moderate OA are given injections.
For more immediate relief, a knee brace can be purchased. While it helps to realign the knee, it can also increase the function in the knees while relieving pain. They are often much cheaper than surgery and less invasive than the injections listed above. The braces also allow people to enjoy mobility again after having to deal with the symptoms of knee osteoarthritis.
Come visit us today at the New York Dynamic Neuromuscular Rehabilitation for a consultation to see what therapy may be best for your own situation.