Arthritis of the knee joint is one of the most serious conditions that causes debilitating knee pain, stiffness, and swelling. There are over 100 types of arthritis, and the most common types that affect your knees include osteoarthritis, post-traumatic arthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis.
Arthritis of the knee can affect people of all ages; however, it is more common in people aged 50 or older. Although there is no cure for arthritis of the knee, there are some treatment options that a knee doctor can recommend to manage knee pain and potentially slow the progression of knee arthritis.
Let us discuss the most common treatment options to manage knee pain associated with knee arthritis.
Pain Management in Knee Arthritis Patients
Knee doctors can recommend various pain management strategies to help alleviate the pain and discomfort associated with knee arthritis. Typically, A knee doctor tries to manage knee pain associated with knee arthritis through:
Lifestyle modifications effectively reduce the severity of arthritis symptoms and possibly stop the arthritis from getting worse. Some lifestyle tips that can ease the symptoms of arthritis are as follows:
- Maintain a healthy weight to reduce stress on your knee joints.
- Engage in regular exercise, such as low-impact activities, for about 150 minutes per week.
- Avoid high-impact activities such as jogging and tennis.
- Wear shoes that provide cushioning and support
- Wear knee braces or sleeves
- Apply heat or ice to the painful knee area.
Besides lifestyle modifications, a knee doctor also recommends medications according to the severity of your symptoms and the stage of the disease. Examples include:
- Non-steroidal and anti-inflammatory medications like Advil and Aleve
- Dietary supplements such as glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate
- Topical ointments or creams
- Corticosteroid injections
- COX-2 inhibitor drugs
- Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs).
Knee doctors can also refer patients with knee arthritis to physical therapists. Physical therapists perform comprehensive evaluations and recommend exercises and therapeutic modalities that help improve strength and range of motion of the knee joint while alleviating pain.
People with stage 4 osteoarthritis (severe knee arthritis) who get no or very limited relief from non-invasive treatments are recommended for knee surgery. Depending on your unique knee condition, a knee doctor can recommend surgical options, such as:
- Partial knee replacement. A surgical process of addressing cartilage damage in a small part of the knee. This involves removing the damaged part and replacing it with an artificial part.
- Total knee replacement. This type of knee surgery involves removing the entire knee joint damaged or worn out and replacing it with artificial implants to provide pain reduction and long-term stability.
- This procedure is performed to address rheumatoid arthritis. It involves removing the lining of the joint, called synovium.
Knee Doctor in San Antonio, TX
If you think your knee might be due to knee arthritis and are looking for comprehensive evaluation and treatment, visit us here at the Center for Orthopaedic Surgery and Sports Medicine. Our highly experienced and top-rated orthopedic surgeons and sports medicine physicians can evaluate your knee condition and offer the best possible treatment options. Our knee surgeons use state-of-the-art techniques and tools to perform replacement surgeries that offer excellent outcomes and shorter recovery periods.