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Knee Pain – When is Surgery Recommended?

Knee Pain TreatmentSports, strenuous exercise, and medical conditions like arthritis cause knee pain. The injury may be mild, acute or chronic, affecting routine activities. Leading Brooklyn based multispecialty healthcare centers offer various knee pain treatment options, including surgery. Many people who have knee pain want to know when they should consider surgery. This will depend on what exactly is causing the pain and how the condition responds to non-surgical treatments.

In people who have osteoarthritis, knee pain occurs when the hard cartilage that covers the knee wears out and becomes thin, making the bones rub against each other. Rheumatoid arthritis causes the synovial membrane that covers and lubricates the knee joint to become inflamed and swell, leading to pain and stiffness. In athletes and people who exercise vigorously, knee pain occurs due to muscle strains from repetitive stress, sprains, tendinitis, and more serious ligament and cartilage injuries. According to Brooklyn sports injuries treatment experts, knee injuries make up more than half of all sports injuries.

Knee pain shouldn’t be ignored. Effective treatment options are available, ranging from non-invasive, minimally invasive and surgical. If you have pain that refuses to go away, consult an orthopedic specialist. In a healthcare center offering specialized orthopedic services, your physician will first do a detailed history and physical to diagnose your condition. Imaging tests such as x-ray and MRI are often used to get a clear picture of the affected joint and tissues. Initial pain management options are non-surgical and will include: heat and ice application, medications, knee braces, weight loss, corticosteroid and hyaluronic acid injections, and physical therapy exercises. If your knee pain doesn’t respond to these treatment options, you should expect that the orthopedic specialist will recommend surgery.

The type of surgical intervention will depend on the knee injury:

  • Arthroscopic surgery: Keyhole surgery techniques are used to remove loose bodies from the joint, remove or repair damaged cartilage, and repair torn ligament
  • Microfracture: In less advanced stages of arthritis, this keyhole surgical procedure can stimulate the growth of new cartilage
  • Osteotomy: This surgical procedure involves cutting or reshaping either the shinbone or thigh bone to relieve pressure on the knee joint which will reduce pain and improve function. It is usually recommended for early-stage osteoarthritis.
  • Partial/total knee replacement: Knee replacement surgery is an effective option when knee pain does not improve with other treatments or other surgeries. It involves replacing only the damaged portion of the knee or the entire surface of the bones with metal or plastic components.

The orthopedic specialist will recommend knee replacement surgery in the following cases: chronic inflammatory pain severely limits everyday activities such as walking or climbing stairs, using cane or crutches, moderate to severe pain even while resting, or knee deformity.

When it comes to knee pain, each person’s condition is unique. So consult an orthopedic specialist in a reliable NYC healthcare center to learn about your options and understand which treatment is best for you.

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