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Knee Arthritis - How To Know If You Are Suffering From It?

Dr. Pranjal Kodkani 85% (21 ratings)
M S Ortho, D - Ortho, MBBS Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery
Orthopedist, Mumbai  •  20 years experience
Knee Arthritis - How To Know If You Are Suffering From It?

If you are suffering from arthritis, it is important for you to know about how it affects your knee and other joints. Arthritis is a chronic disease which damages your joints and connective tissues. Your knee is commonly affected by arthritis and there are three primary types of arthritis that occur in the knees. They include osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and post-traumatic arthritis. 

Types of Arthritis 
The different types of arthritis affecting the knees occur due to different reasons. Osteoarthritis is a progressive condition, which wears away the joint cartilage over time. Rheumatoid arthritis is an inflammatory condition, which may occur at any age. Post-traumatic arthritis occurs after an injury is inflicted to the knee and may occur several years after a ligament injury or knee fracture. Major symptoms Arthritis pain may occur all of a sudden but develops slowly. 

In the early stages, the pain is observed in the morning after you have been inactive over the night. Pain is likely when you want to move around. Pain may be experienced even when immobile. Periodic inflammation is a common symptom of arthritis of the knee. You may have formation of bone spurs or excess fluids in your knee. The swelling gets pronounced after being active for a long period. The skin on your knee may look red and feel warm while you touch it. This may lead to chronic inflammation, and irreversible damage to the joint. 

Treatment 
There are several ways of treating knee arthritis. The mode of treatment depends on the severity and cause of knee arthritis. Appropriate physiotherapy may help in some patients NSAIDS or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are commonly prescribed for dealing with arthritis pain temporarily. Other medicines used for knee arthritis treatment are as follows: 

  1. Analgesics, which help in pain reduction act as good alternatives to NSAIDS. 
  2. Corticosteroids are used for reducing inflammation. 
  3. Certain DMARDs or disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs are used. 
  4. Certain injections that are used for helping with knee arthritis. 

They include: 
Hyaluronic acid supplements, which ease the pain and inflammation by lubricating your knee joints. Corticosteroid injections also soothe inflammation and pain. PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) BMAC (Bone Marrow Aspirate Concentrate) You may also require a surgery for dealing with knee arthritis when other modes of treatment fail. 

The most common surgeries are as follows: 

  1. Joint Preservation Surgeries: Arthroscopy, where a keyhole incision is made in the knee for treating the damaged parts.  
  2. Ligament repairs & reconstruction
  3. Cartilage repair 
  4. Meniscus repair & transplantation 
  5. Osteotomy, where the knee bones are modified for optimising the function of and damaged knees. This avoids replacement of any part of the knee with an artificial prosthesis like a joint replacement
  6. Joint Replacement Surgeries: Uni knee replacement/Total joint replacement where your knee is replaced with a prosthetic made of metal, plastic or ceramic.

It is recommended for you to consult a doctor, if you experience any symptom of knee arthritis. Early treatment will prevent the condition from worsening.

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