Knee Pain Evaluation and Viscosupplementation Options for Pain
Knee pain is a widespread problem. It can start anywhere in your knee joint, kneecap and/or ligaments and cartilage (meniscus) of your knee. A number of issues can worsen the pain, including exercise, foot injury or movements of the surrounding muscles. Any person can be a victim, although older people are likely to suffer the most due to joint inflammation and deterioration they endure. A certain degree of ache can be stopped at home, of course, but if it’s severe, you should see the best doctor for knee pain NYC area.
Depending on the affected structure of the knee, your pain can vary. If it is because you have an ongoing inflammatory process, your entire knee might appear swollen. On the other hand, if you have a bone fracture or a ripped cartilage, pain will be localized. In case you have a baker’s cyst, pain will often appear in the back of your knee. Additionally, a knee ache can be mild, moderate or chronic. If you have the following symptoms, visit a New York pain specialist today.
- You can’t walk up or down a staircase. This pain might be due to a ligament injury.
- It’s so hard to bend or extend your knee
- You walk while limping due to discomfort
- You have redness and swelling
- Your knee feels unstable and you fear walking
- You shift all the weight to the opposite knee and foot due to pain
It is important to pay attention to your pain to know how it happens and what aggravates it the most. Having enough details about your problem is a must before seeing a specialist.
What causes pain in the knee?
As one of the leading complaints, a knee ache is something that doctors are used to treating. It has a wide range of causes, yes, but it is important to make a genuine diagnosis of the signs you are having. This can help the doctor determine the right treatment method. If you have soreness of knee, here are some of the reasons why:
- Arthritis – Knee arthritis is among the top causes of knee pain.
- Injuries to ligaments – There are different kinds of injuries that affect your knee ligaments. These are: ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament), LCL (Lateral Collateral Ligament), PCL (Posterior Cruciate Ligament) and MCL (Medial Collateral Ligament).
- Dislocating Kneecap
- Bursitis – The bursa above your kneecap is largely affected by bursitis and those at risk work while kneeling.
- Cartilage injuries – The common ones are meniscal tears and they affect people of all ages.
- Tendonitis of the patellar tendon – This is a big tendon found over the front side of your knee.
- Osteochondritis Dissecans or OCD – Affects teens when there is growth of the bone enfolding their knee joint.
- Gout – Although it’s less common, the knee should be closely examined to see if this form of arthritis is present.
- Chondromalacia Patella – This condition triggers knee pain under your kneecap when the cartilage has softened. It affects people between fifteen to thirty-five years.
- Osgood-Schlatter Disease – It occurs when the growth plate located at the front of the knee joint in teenagers is inflamed.
- Baker’s Cyst – It is the swelling located in the back of the joint and indicates presence of a meniscus tear.
- Plica Syndrome – It is uncommon but still a possible cause of your soreness in the knee.
Seeing the pain specialist – Diagnosing the pain
Knee soreness cannot be treated until it’s properly diagnosed. See a specialist doctor, therefore, to know why you feel pain. He or she will examine your knee and determine the following:
- Where on the knee the pain is felt – If the exact location of your pain is found, proper treatment actions can be taken. If the pain is felt on the side closest to the other knee, your doctor might conclude that it’s due to arthritis, medial meniscus tears or MCL injuries.
- Why your knee is swollen – A severe injury that affects your internal joint structure such as the anterior cruciate ligament can trigger swelling of the knee. Moreover, a fracture of the top of your shin bone can make your knee swell. There are other cases too, including a meniscus tear, ligament strain, osteoarthritis, joint infection, inflammatory arthritis or gout.
- The mobility of your knee – A few things can affect your knee’s range of motion. For instance, arthritis causes serious joint stiffness and inflexibility. It causes the joint’s surface to become irregular and this limits mobility. It could also be that your knee’s range of motion became limited by an acute injury. If there is swelling, this could be the case or possibly a torn structure within the joint.
- The stability of your knee joint – Any of the top rated pain management doctors will suspect that the ligaments that surround your tibia (shin bone) or femur (thigh bone) are the cause of your knee instability. If these are stretched or torn, your knee may feel as if it is collapsing beneath you.
- Why you have snapping and popping sounds – If these are painless, there is usually nothing to worry about. On the other hand, painful snaps and pops should be investigated by a specialist doctor. The leading cause of this sound is usually a torn ACL ligament. If there is a cartilage issue such as a disorder called chondromalacia, one may feel a grinding sensation when bending the knee or placing their hand on top of the kneecap. The same can occur when one has arthritis.
- Why there is a locking problem – It happens when one tries to bend or straighten out their knee. If it’s not something trying to stop the motion of the knee, then it is extreme pain that is preventing the natural knee movement to take place. When a numbing medication is injected in the knee, a knee pain doctor can determine whether you have something blocking movements. You can try to bend your knee after the medication has worked to see if the pain was blocking motion or if there is a structure doing the same.
Pain management and rehabilitation
If you feel pain and have not been examined by a medical expert, this is the right time to do it. By so doing, you will find out the cause of your symptoms and how you can be treated. Generally, treatment of the knee discomfort is directed at the specific cause. If you have the signs we afore-mentioned, do not wait any longer. Visit your doctor right away. There are a number of treatment choices offered to control and end the pain. The commonest therapy is viscomsupplementation treatment.
What is Viscosupplementation treatment?
This option is designed for knee arthritis victims. Did you know that knee osteoarthritis is the top cause of disability in the U.S? Once it begins, it spreads gradually until the pain becomes too much. The disease has no cure, but it can be managed through Viscosupplementation treatment. It is provided only after other forms of treatments have failed. These include weight loss, physical therapy, pain killers, corticosteroid injections and rest. Viscomsupplementation can be described as a treatment method where hyaluronic acid is injected into the knee joint. A naturally occurring gel-like fluid, hyaluronic acid is a synovial fluid that encloses our joints. It is a lubricant that prevents friction from hurting our joints. If you have osteoarthritis, your amount of hyaluronic acid in the knee joint is less than normal. So when you get a shot, the amount will increase and your joint will be well lubricated. A method that boasts the approval of the FDA since 1997, Viscosupplementation really works.
- How it is done – Based on the kind of product picked, you may receive one to five injections over a relatively long period. First, your chronic pain treatment expert will remove your aspirate (excess fluid in a swollen knee joint). Next, he or she will give you a shot using just one needle or two separate syringes. The leg should be left to rest for two days and after that you can try walking or standing.
- Are there side effects? – There might be warmth, pain, and slight swelling after the injection. But, these symptoms will disappear shortly after. Try using an ice compress to ease this discomfort.
- Complications – These are rare but they can happen to you. The main complication is an allergy-like response within the knee joint. So it becomes red, warm, painful and full of fluid. Let your doctor know about this.
- Does it work? – Viscosupplementation may not help everyone as some people can develop complications. For those who benefit from it, pain relief can be felt after many weeks. It doesn’t make your cartilage re-grow or reverse your osteoarthritis symptoms. It is mostly recommended when arthritis is just starting out.
- Knee radiofrequency ablation – Although the term sounds technical, the procedure is performed as an outpatient service. It entails only two phases. In the first step, the doctor carries out a test by injecting a certain medication into the knee nerves (genicular nerves). The medicine blocks your pain signals in a temporary manner. If a patient’s pain improves, the next step is done and it entails heat application via a special needle. Heat is placed right into the genicular nerves of your knee. This procedure stops your knee from sending out pain signals to your brain. Knee radiofrequency ablation is one of the latest treatments and it gives relieve only for six months. It has helped may people who lived with intense knee ache. So, see the best management doctor NYC as you could make a great radiofrequency ablation candidate.
- Genicular Nerve Block – This is often used along with the radiofrequency ablation(RFA) technique described above. Genicular nerve block includes placement of a small quantity of a local anesthetic on a patient’s genicular nerves. This is done to determine whether the patient has felt any relief and if he or she makes a great candidate for therapeutic neurotomy. Next, genicular nerve ablation is done via the radiofrequency ablation procedure described above. This is done to make the knee functional once again.
It is a better option than surgery of the knee, yet it can still be used to control pain after surgery. Genicular nerve block is ideal for:
- Degenerative joint disease of the knee
- Chronic knee pain
- Those seeking an alternative to knee replacement surgery
- Those seeking pain relief after knee replacement surgery
- Those who want pain relief after a partial knee replacement surgery
- Those who want knee replacement surgery but they are unfit.
- Iovera treatment – This technologically advanced treatment method makes use of your body’s natural response to cold stimuli. It treats peripheral nerves and totally reduces pain without any form of drugs. In other words, iovera treatment stops your nerves from conveying pain signals to the brain for a given period. This method is used to block pain and it is accepted by the FDA. Pain relief lasts until your nerve regenerates itself and restores your joint function. The relief is instant and it is, therefore, an ideal pre-surgery preparation procedure. Iovera therapy does not remove a disease that requires a surgical treatment.
- PRP and Stem Cell Therapy – Apart from the above mentioned techniques some patients are treated via PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) treatment. It is ideal for people with osteoarthritis of the knee and it entails one or two injections of the knee to reduce the pain and stiffness. Improvement can be felt in six to 12 weeks. Another kind of therapy is called Stem Cell Therapy and it is a great alternative to surgery. Stem cells are made in our bone marrow, adipose tissues and blood and they are similar to the cells that create our ligaments, bone, muscles, joints and cartilage. Hence, stem cells can be used to repair our joints and their components. Stem Cell Therapy entails injections that reduce the need to undergo surgery by activating re-growth of new and healthier tissues.
Pain in the knee joint is common and there are millions of sufferers around the globe. If I were you, I would search for a knee doctor near me to control my knee discomfort. It is better than living with pain or becoming disabled when you have a lot of constructive things to do.