The first step before beginning any treatment is to understand exactly how arthritis affects the human knee. Osteoarthritis of the knee is the most common joint disease and it’s the second most common arthritic disease. Pro Physiotherapy centres in Jayanagar, Bangalore are very famous for arthritis management.
At least 111150,000 (approximately) people in India have X-ray evidence of moderate-to-severe osteoarthritis in their knees.
There are more than 100 different types of arthritis affecting people of all ages, including about 300,00000 children.
Arthritis literally means joint inflammation. “Arth” refers to the joints and “itis” refers to inflammation. Arthritis is not a single disease.
Because the knee is so complex joint, each patient needs to consider a range of individual treatment plans & options.
We at Pro Physiotherapy provide arthritis knee pain physiotherapy including electrotherapy like IFT, Ultrasonic therapy, SWD, etc, and exercise therapy, advice, and tips that can improve your quality of life and significantly reduce or totally eliminate your knee pain. Though it’s quite difficult to eliminate arthritis pain forever significant reduction in pain & other symptoms are possible.
Before discussing various knee conditions, let’s discuss knee structure in short.
Structure of the knee
The knee is pivoting joint composed of the combined bones of the femur and tibia. There are four ligaments that hold it together:
medial collateral ligament
lateral collateral ligament
anterior cruciate ligament
posterior cruciate ligament
The kneecap, or patella, forms the anterior part of the knee.
Underneath the patella, and along the edges of the femur and tibia, is the smooth and slick surface of the articular cartilage. This tough elastic tissue enables non-abrasive movement without pain.
The synovium, a membrane that surrounds the knee, supplies tiny quantities of a viscous fluid that moisturises the articular cartilage to keep it smooth and slippery.
The synovium is surrounded by the joint capsule, a sturdy external cover that shields and reinforces the knee.
What is arthritis in the knee?
Joint disorders of the knee fall under two categories:
mechanical knee problems &
inflammatory knee problems
Mechanical knee problems are caused by injuries like an abrupt wrenching movement or
a hard jolt which can force the knee to go beyond its normal capacity of motion. Inflammatory knee problems originate from arthritis.
In most cases, arthritis of the knee is most commonly diagnosed as osteoarthritis, a degenerative disease that causes gradual joint erosion ( wear & tear).
Osteoarthritis of the knee can cause mild, moderate, and total deterioration of the joint according to the severity. The accompanying inflammation, as is common in most rheumatic diseases, also results in joint impairment.
Rheumatoid arthritis of the knee is characterized by joint inflammation and damage to the supporting cartilage. It’s an autoimmune disease. Other ancillary parts of the knee, like the muscles, tendons, and ligaments are not escape from the disease.
Osteoarthritis can be triggered by an inordinate amount of strain on the joint caused by recurring injuries, deformity, or being overweight. The disease often strikes during middle age ( from 40 years) or older, however, younger people are also at risk of developing the disease due to the following:
genetics is involved – heredity is also a major factor when children and young adults develop osteoarthritis.
sports-related injuries – frequent damage in sports directly affecting the knee’s cartilage disk (meniscus) can also lead to osteoarthritis in young athletes.
Rheumatoid arthritis – Osteoarthritis in the young starts out as RA.
Arthritis In The Knee: Signs, Symptoms, And Diagnosis
Knee pain, knee swelling, and limited knee movement are indicators of arthritis in the knee. People who suffer from this disorder will find difficulty moving the joint in the mornings, however, stiffness decreases by gradually increasing motion.
At other times, as with other knee conditions, the joint produces clicking sounds when bent or straightened, and may lock suddenly.
An accurate diagnosis can be made after undergoing medical assessment and x-rays.
Other methods used diagnose rheumatoid arthritis include:
fluid analysis – laboratory analysis of fluid samples from the knee will help diagnose the type of arthritis suffered.
arthroscopy – a doctor may order this test to directly view and assess the extent of cartilage, tendon, and ligament damage. Arthroscopy is usually conducted prior to corrective surgical procedures to repair the knee
Where exactly does it hurt?
To make an appropriate medical assessment, a patient will need to inform the physiotherapist of the precise location or sites of pain. The specific areas affected by pain may point to different forms of the disease, like bursitis, arthritis, or chondromalacia patella, a softening of the patella cartilage of the knee.
Injuries of the collateral ligaments, arthritis, or meniscus tears cause pain at the sides of the knee. Anterior knee pain may be the result of arthritis, or Bakers cysts, a build-up of excess synovial fluid at the back of the knee. One other cause of knee pain can be attributed to infection.
Rheumatoid arthritis of the knee (inflamed synovium)
Rheumatoid arthritis causes the body’s immune system to attack the joints. White blood cells, which act as the body’s natural defenses, target the synovium, resulting in synovitis, an inflammation of the synovium.
This disease is characterized by knee pain, knee swelling, and reddening and warmth of the joint.
The disease is further indicated by a thickened synovium which causes the knee to swell and enlarge.
Further along in its progression, rheumatoid arthritis allows abnormal synovial cells to attack the joint and its cartilage, causing it to erode and deteriorate. This is the reason why rheumatoid arthritis is commonly known as “wear-and-tear” arthritis. In severe cases, the cartilage shell wears away, eventually causing the bones of the knee – both the tibia and femur, to rub against each other.
This leads to knee pain, knee swelling, and difficulty of movement. The knee joint gradually becomes deformed, causing the bordering muscles, ligaments, and tendons to weaken.
In addition, bone spurs known as osteophytes start to form along the joint perimeter, causing fragments of bone and knee cartilage to break away and drift within the joint area, bringing about an increase in pain and adding to joint destruction.
Osteoarthritis of the Knee (Joint Damage)
When the knee develops Osteoarthritis, symptoms set in that are similar to rheumatoid arthritis of the knee. Synovitis takes place, causing the top coating of the cartilage to slowly disintegrate.
The thinned-down cartilage causes the femur and tibia – the bones that make up the knee – to chafe against each other, bone scraping on bone.
The resulting knee pain, knee swelling, and incapacity of joint movement eventually lead to a deformity of the joint and its surrounding tissue.
Osteophyte formation occurs bone spurs that develop along the periphery of the joint which separates from the bone in due course, clogging joint space and adding to the pain and joint decay.
To Know more about knee arthritis you can consult Pro Physiotherapy centres in Jayanagar, Bangalore.
Arthritis In The Knee: Treatment Options
Note: We don’t prescribe any medicine or this is only for educational purposes only. You should consult your doctors about medicine. You should not take medicine without prescribing by a qualified physician.
Painkillers are usually administered to treat pain symptoms accompanying Osteoarthritis of the knee. The most commonly used painkillers include:
nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
During the pain we at Pro Physiotherapy centres in Jayanagar , Bangalore uses electrotherapy like
Once the pain reduces significantly exercise therapy is the best option like strengthening , ROM, stretching.
Avoid stair climbing, squatting, low sitting like siting for pooja , namaz etc. patients can use stool or chair for pooja or namaz .
Regular walking on plane surface is also very important, but avoid uneven surface for walking.
An appropriate exercise regimen can build up strength in the knee and improve joint movement. Physiotherapists also recommend losing weight to take the stress off the affected joint.
Advanced stages of rheumatoid arthritis in the knee may necessitate the administration of even more potent drugs in addition to physical therapy. More severe cases will require surgery for artificial joint replacement ( Total Knee Replacement).
For diagnosis and treatment of Knee Arthritis, visit Pro Physiotherapy Centres in Jayanagar, JP Nagar, Koramangala, vijaynagar, Padmanabha Nagar, HSR Layout, Bangalore. To schedule an appointment with our knee expert physiotherapists, you can call at 89-510-22334.