The knee is a complex hinge joint because it allows for extension and flexion as well as rotation of the lower leg. It is the largest joint in the body, and it is also one of the more frequently injured joints.
Knee pain that comes on slowly over a long period of time, such as from arthritis, can be initially treated at home with over-the-counter pain medications. Once it becomes persistent and chronic, it is time to see an orthopedic physician. Blunt-force trauma to the knee also requires medical attention, such as from a sports injury.
When Home Treatment Methods Do Not Work
You may first try to treat your knee pain via the traditional RICE method:
You may also use heat therapy and cold therapy to try to bring relief to your knee. However, if these methods are not resolving your pain, see an orthopedist.
Orthopedists are specialized medical doctors who focus their practice on the musculoskeletal system. This includes health conditions and injuries involving the joints, bones, muscles, ligaments, tendons, cartilage, and all of the ancillary tissues. Common ailments they treat include arthritis and inflammation due to overuse, such as from playing tennis or basketball.
When to Seek Immediate Treatment for Knee Pain
See an orthopedic physician if you experience any of the following issues with your knee:
- Deformed knee shape
- Inability to bear weight or move without excruciating pain
- Popping sound when moving the knee
- Inability to lift your leg to get into bed
- Weight of the lower leg pulling on the knee is causing pain
Any of the above symptoms could be indicative of an injury that should be treated quickly. The knee pain may be due to a torn ACL (anterior cruciate ligament), torn meniscus (cartilage), bursitis, or many other issues.
How Can an Orthopedist Treat My Knee Pain?
Because they specialize in diagnosing and treating issues with joints such as the knee, an orthopedist will be able to take care of your knee pain quickly and efficiently. The orthopedist will likely order an X-ray to rule out any indication of bone spurs or other issues, and the physician may also order an MRI or a CT scan for a more detailed picture of your knee.
The doctor may recommend a medication, and they are also likely to recommend physical therapy in order to get your knee back into good working order. If these noninvasive methods do not bring relief to your knee, the doctor may provide pain-relief injections in your knee. If minimally invasive injections are not working either, then surgery may be recommended to provide lasting relief.
The good news is that knee surgery has become so advanced that your orthopedic surgeon can now perform a knee operation via minimally invasive procedures. The surgery can be outpatient, so you can go home the same day of the surgery as long as you do not have any issues such as an infection.
Knee Doctors in San Antonio, Texas
If you have chronic knee pain due to arthritis, playing tennis, or an old sports injury, contact our friendly team at the Center for Orthopaedic Surgery and Sports Medicine to schedule a consultation with an experienced orthopedic physician. The doctor will be able to quickly diagnose and treat your condition so you can get back to doing what you love.
Call us today at (210) 692-7400 or fill out our easy-to-use online appointment form now. We look forward to seeing you here!