Surgery is never the first option for treating a knee problem. There are plenty of alternative treatments that can alleviate the pain as well as it causes. With that said, your physician will have you try out a few alternatives in order to the ease the inflammation and pain. Read on to learn three non-surgical treatment alternatives:
Oftentimes, painful symptoms are caused by inflammation within the knee as the bones start to rub against each other. This is due erosion of cartilage. By reducing the inflammation with the knee joint, not only can it relieve the pain temporarily, but it will also delay the need for invasive surgery. A physician can prescribe anti-inflammatory medication to decrease the inflammation and swelling in the joint of the knee. The most common types of anti-inflammatories include:
There is a new type of medication known as “Cox-2 inhibitors” that are primarily used to reduce the inflammation, which in turn, reduces the pain. Another type of inflammatory medication used to reduce inflammation is a corticosteroid injection. This powerful injection is inserted straight into the inflamed joint, temporarily relieving any pain caused by the inflammation.
Attend Physical Therapy
Working with a physical therapist is another non-surgical treatment option. Physical therapists are specifically trained to create therapy regimes that strengthen muscles while lessening inflammation and pain. During therapy sessions, they will demonstrate the proper way to perform range of motion exercises. They may also apply both ice and heat for topical pain relief. Ultrasound and electrical stimulation may also be utilized to increase blood flow to the knee.
Before even considering injections and medication, most physicians will recommend lifestyle modification. You can change your lifestyle in many ways:
Losing weight. Carrying extra weight causes joint wear and tear.
Avoid activities such as running, which can further agitate the knee injury
Change the way you exercise in order to reduce the impact. High-impact workouts like HIIT can place an enormous amount of stress on your lower extremities.
Try out ways to relieve stress on your knee by changing your daily routine
Stem Cell Treatment
Stem cell treatments are deemed as the “miracle cure” for everything from knee inflammation to hair loss. The stem cells themselves are extracted through fat or bone marrow. Then, they are concentrated and finally injected into the knee. To make sure the injection is safely inserted, doctors use image guidance. Research has shown that stem cell treatment for knees can improve chronic knee pain and inflammation knee by doing the following:
Taking root and developing into essential cartilage cells.
Reducing inflammatory response, which lessens painful symptoms.
Releasing proteins known as cytokines, which reduce pain and slows the degeneration of the cartilage.
Hyaluronic Acid Injections
In addition to corticosteroid injections, hyaluronic acid injections may also lessen knee pain. Hyaluronic scud is found naturally in our bodies. However, as we get older, production slows, which can decrease shock absorption in the knee joint. Possible side effects may include tenderness at the injection site and swelling. In addition, inform your physician of any allergies you have, in particular, to eggs.
As mentioned before, knee surgery should only be considered as a last resort. Keep in mind that having invasive knee surgery does not guarantee that you will be pain-free. If you’re experiencing any kind of knee pain, consult your physician and schedule an appointment to get a proper diagnosis.