Arthritis is a common disease that many people develop as they grow older. It involves the inflammation of one or more joints, leading to pain and stiffness. While arthritis can affect any joint, it’s frequently observed in the knees due to their constant use. This condition brings about pain and stiffness, leading to challenges in performing daily tasks such as tying shoes, standing up from a seated position, or taking short walks. There are over one hundred different forms of arthritis, with Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis being the most common. While there isn’t a definitive cure for this condition, there are treatment options available to help alleviate its inflammation and enable an active lifestyle.
A knee joint affected by arthritis is likely to be sore and inflamed. The discomfort usually develops gradually; however, a sudden onset is also possible. Other symptoms include:
The two primary forms of arthritis that affect the knees are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Osteoarthritis (OA) primarily targets the joints, gradually eroding the cartilage until it becomes frayed and uneven. This process leads to discomfort when bones interact directly and triggers the formation of calcium deposits or bone outgrowths.
Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), on the other hand, is a chronic autoimmune disorder that affects many parts of the body, with a pronounced impact on the knee joint, causing inflammation, swelling, and stiffness accompanied by pain. As an autoimmune condition, RA prompts the immune system to erroneously attack healthy cells, resulting in damage to cartilage and ligaments. In certain instances, it can even lead to bone softening.
Although a complete cure for osteoarthritis is not currently possible, there are several natural approaches that can be employed to manage the condition and enhance your overall quality of life.
Early treatment for any arthritic condition usually involves nonsurgical approaches. Your doctor may recommend a range of non-invasive treatments that you can begin implementing immediately, aimed at alleviating pain, enhancing mobility, and improving your overall quality of life.
These approaches include:
f your arthritis-related pain persists despite non-surgical treatments, your GP might suggest considering surgical options. You have the option to request a referral to Dr. Munjed Al Muderis and request a consultation through our clinic so we can determine the best approach for your pain.
As with any surgical procedure, it’s important to note that various types of knee operations carry inherent risks and potential side effects. Your doctor will provide a comprehensive explanation of these potential risks and side effects during your appointment, ensuring you have a clear understanding before making any decisions. Two common surgical treatments for arthritis are detailed below.
Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure used by doctors to both diagnose and treat joint pain. Through small incisions, slender instruments are inserted, allowing for visual examination and targeted interventions within the joint. Although arthroscopic surgery is not commonly employed for treating knee arthritis, it can prove beneficial in cases involving concurrent degenerative meniscal tears.
To learn more about the knee arthroscopy procedure, as well as what you can expect prior to, during, and after the surgery, please visit our Knee Arthroscopy page.