Knee pain is one of the most common types of pain among adults, especially athletes and elderly adults. That comes as no surprise, considering how often we use our knees throughout the day, and how much impact and bodyweight knees have to support. But knee pain can be caused by many different things.
Sports related injuries and overuse cause significant pain among adults of all ages. Meniscal injuries, such as torn meniscus cartilage or torn ligaments in the knee, can cause many complications that affect patients for years. Meniscal tears are often caused by twisting and pivoting during physically demanding activities like sports. However, older adults can also tear menisci doing everyday activities, since the cartilage in the knee grows weak with age. Regardless of age, meniscal injuries can lead to osteoarthritis as well.
Osteoarthritis is a major cause of knee pain among elderly adults and even affects some younger adults. It is a degenerative tissue disorder, or a disorder in which the cartilage in the knee wears down as the result of use. Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is another common cause of pain that affects the lining of the knee joints. It is an autoimmune disorder, meaning the immune system attacks its own tissue, rather than a disorder caused by overuse. In addition to pain and inflammation, RA can lead to serious complications, including bone erosion. Currently there is not a cure for osteoarthritis or RA.
While there are multiple causes of knee pain, some of which have no known cure, there are many ways to alleviate and treat knee pain. Exercise is a great way to prevent injuries and complications, particularly by strengthening the quadriceps and other muscles that support the knee. Even for those suffering from stiffness, light exercise, such as low impact cycling or swimming, is a great way to maintain flexibility and help pain caused by arthritis.
At Spine and Joint Pain Specialists, we offer different treatment options to help minimize knee pain. Bracing, for instance, provides stability and helps lessen the pressure placed on the damaged area of the knee, which can significantly reduce pain caused by arthritis. We also offer different knee injections, including stem cells and corticosteroids, as well as hyaluronic acid injections. These injections all help relieve pain and decrease inflammation, depending on the cause of the knee pain. The length of pain relief varies among injections from a few months up to a year. Call Spine & Joint Pain Specialists today to see which treatment option is right for you!