3 reasons you may be experiencing knee pain
Knee pain has been described anywhere from a dull ache that started slowly and has gradually gotten worse with activity to a severe pain that comes on when climbing stairs or standing after sitting for an extended period of time. Pain in the knees can also be accompanied by a clicking sound and weakness in the legs.
No matter how you describe it, if joint pain is interfering with everyday activities, you are likely seeking relief. Treatment options for knee pain will often depend on the cause of the problem.
Here are 3 common culprits that may be to blame for your knee pain.
Sprains, strains and injuries - Pain in your knee can be attributed to a number of injuries, sprains, or strains. These types of injuries can happen as a result of athletic activities, but can also occur after falls or other traumas such as automobile accidents.
It is a good idea to have the area evaluated by a doctor so the level of severity can be determined.
Treatment may include something as simple as "P.O.L.I.C.E." (Protection, Optimum Loading, Ice, Compression, and Elevation) or something more complex like prolonged rehabilitation or surgical intervention may be recommended depending on ligament damage.
Osteoarthritis - Osteoarthritis is a prevalent type of arthritis caused by mechanical wear and tear of the cushioning on the joints. When the shock-absorbing cartilage of the joints wears away the bones rub together resulting in pain, swelling, and decreased mobility. One of the most common joints impacted by osteoarthritis is the knee.
As a person ages, their risk of developing osteoarthritis increases. Women and those who are overweight are also more likely to experience knee pain caused by osteoarthritis. Repetitive stress injuries from work or athletics can also increase risk of osteoarthritis of the knee.
Treatment options for osteoarthritis pain in the knee can include a combination of a weight loss and exercise plan, pain relief or anti-inflammatory medications, and/or corticosteroid or hyaluronic acid injections into the knee. If these treatments aren't working to relieve pain and increase mobility, surgery may be considered.
Rheumatoid arthritis- Differing from osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease - the body's own immune system is attacking the joints. You may notice tender, warm, swollen joints that are particularly stiff in the morning or after inactivity.
It is possible to have more than one type of arthritis. See your doctor for a diagnosis and to discuss a successful treatment plan for the specific type or types of arthritis you may have.
Treatment for knee pain due to rheumatoid arthritis will be similar to osteoarthritis treatment. Those who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis will benefit from early diagnosis and treatment. Your doctor may want to offer pain relief options in addition to prescribing medications to treat the disease.When is the right time for knee replacement surgery?
Schedule a visit with your primary physician if your knee pain persists for a long time, gets progressively worse or disrupts daily activities. If you don't have a primary physician, Reid Health Referral Line is here to find you one. Call us at (765) 935-8934 or click here for more information.