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Category Archives: Knee Pain

An x-ray visualization of someone who needs knee injections for pain, as they're holding their knee in pain.

Do Knee Injections for Pain Really Work?

We can expect joint pain to increase as we age, whether through competitive sports or just aging — which is why knee injections for pain remain such a hot topic these days. It’s time to look for an alternative to over-the-counter pain relievers when joint pain interferes with your life.

However, another option is searching for the best non-surgical treatment for knee pain.


What are Knee Injections for Pain?

You can receive knee injections for pain directly into your joints or ligaments and tendons surrounding them. Inflammation can be reduced, pain can be managed, and supporting structures may be healed by these treatments.

Rather than being viewed as a standalone best treatment for knee joint pain, injections should be considered a means to an end. In order to achieve results, you must also do physical or occupational therapy.

It doesn’t matter if you have pain in one joint due to an injury or just wear-and-tear, or if you have osteoarthritis in multiple joints. You can receive injections for joints throughout your body, including your knees, hips, shoulders, ankles, sacroiliac joints, and facet joints. The economic burden of osteoarthritis in U.S. adults is estimated at $188 billion, with 27 million adults suffering from it in at least one joint.


When Injections are the Best Option

You should begin knee injections for pain by getting adequate rest, exercising regularly, and eating well. A pain management specialist or doctor will consider injections if every attempt has been made to maximize your health through other avenues and you are still experiencing pain.

Joint injections should be discussed with your doctor in an honest and thoughtful manner. The cost of this treatment is usually not covered by insurance. Due to the fact that some of these injections are still experimental and not FDA-approved, insurance coverage may not be available. You should talk to your doctor about your options before paying out of pocket.

Are you exploring other options, especially those covered by insurance? Do you think surgery would be better for you? In terms of recovery, what are your expectations? All of these questions are relevant when you’re searching for the best non-surgical treatment for knee pain.


Five Types and What You Should Know

The type of knee injections for pain your doctor recommends will depend on your needs. Corticosteroids and autologous cells are among the injectables available.


An injection of cortisone

As a first-line treatment, you will probably receive a cortisone shot or steroid injection — which happens to be the best way to relieve knee pain for so many patients out there. Inflammation and pain are quickly reduced by cortisone shots in many patients, but they do come with some precautions. You may experience side effects from steroids throughout your body over time, due to their toxic effects on cartilage in your joints. They might be useful for quick fixes. Another plan needs to be developed on a long-term, repeated basis. It is common for insurance companies to cover cortisone shots. Depending on the severity of the injury, relief may last for a long time. You will only feel the effects of steroids for about three months if you have chronic, long-term pain.


Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections and cell therapy

Injections of PRP involve taking your blood, isolating and concentrating the platelets, and injecting billions of platelets into your joint, ligament, or tendon. Cell therapies are injectables that use your own cells and tissues, such as bone marrow or fat. Your joint, ligament, or tendon is carefully injected with the cells after they have been collected, cleansed, and injected. In many patients, cell therapies have reduced chronic inflammation, and research suggests that they may stimulate a healing response over time.


Injections of knee gel

The fluid inside your joints is made up of hyaluronic acid, a thick substance similar to hyaluronic acid in gel injections. Gel injections may be covered by some insurance plans, but only in the knee (or sometimes in the shoulder). If you have mild to moderate arthritis, knee gel injections work well for most knee pain. There is usually a six-to-twelve-month period of effect. Gel injections are often used if you have tried other treatments like medication, exercise, or steroid injections without success — and still remains a best treatment for knee joint pain for many.


Getting a prolotherapy injection

The aim of prolotherapy injections is to relieve joint, ligament, and tendon pain using concentrated sugar water (dextrose). The injections may reduce the pain associated with osteoarthritis and chronic injuries of the tendons and ligaments, such as ankle sprains. They are rarely covered by insurance. Especially for knee arthritis and tennis elbow, prolotherapy has some strong research evidence.


A newer category of injectables

orthobiologics is made from your own blood or tissue. Orthobiologics has not been proven to restore missing tissue, and such products are not FDA-approved for treating arthritis or other joint disorders, but some studies suggest that it may promote healing in tissue. This treatment targets arthritic joints and chronic tendon problems pretty much anywhere on your body, and is not usually covered by insurance.

You may have arthritis in your ankles, hips, knees, shoulders, elbows, and wrists. It does not matter if it’s a tennis elbow, a hamstring injury, an Achilles injury, or tendinopathy of your hip — pain management specialists are able to handle it all. Especially in cases of sacroiliac (SI) joint pain, orthobiologic injections can be helpful. Spinal intervertebral joints connect your pelvis with your lower spine. A sprained SI joint ligament can be very responsive to regenerative injection treatment, as the ligaments that link over your bones can easily be sprained.


Knee Injections for Pain and The Cortisone Experience

It’s rare to experience an allergic reaction when you receive knee injections for pain. However, as with any treatment, there can be side effects, such as flushing and headaches with cortisone injections. Injection sites can also develop fat necrosis (divots in the skin) and hypopigmentation (pale skin).

Blood sugar levels can also temporarily rise. This usually lasts for a week or so.

The experts are careful about how often they inject because repeated injections can injure tendons. It is recommended to space them out over a period of three months. Pain management specialists and doctors usually won’t inject more than three times around a tendon.

Infection is another possible risk. The skin should be clean before you give the injection, and you should use a good sterile technique. A surgical site infection is more likely to occur if you have surgery on that area too soon after an injection, since the steroid suppresses the immune system. An injection of cortisone into a joint within two months of surgery is not recommended by most total joint surgeons.


The Cortisone Experience

There are fewer risks associated with cortisone injections than with oral steroids. The latter can increase weight, cause osteoporosis, and cause diabetes if used long term. Weight gain is not caused by cortisone injections, which do not cause systemic problems.

Since injections are usually the best non-surgical treatment for knee pain for many patients, it’s possible to receive them every month, depending on the condition being treated and the location where they are administered. It may be recommended that you only receive a few injections within one year if you have other conditions.

Athletic trainers and orthopaedic sports specialists should always be consulted before injecting professional athletes during their season. Yet, the need for constant injections may not be necessary for weekend warriors, knitters, or pianists. Your best way to relieve knee pain all depends on what your pain management specialist or doctor says.


Takeaways and Practices to Remember

Generally, the difference between these types of knee injections for pain is their duration. With a steroid, you’ll feel better in a month. Patients who receive platelet-rich plasma or prolotherapy may find they feel better for months or years afterward.

It is important to trust your doctor when it comes to joint injections, since false advertising and hype are prevalent. For your specific diagnosis, ask your doctor how long you might experience pain relief. Make sure you ask your doctor or clinic about their safety protocols before receiving the best non-surgical treatment for knee pain.

Last but not least, make sure you’re a true participant, both before and after the injection. Prepare yourself physically and mentally. Your procedure and rehab should be as effective as possible if you’re investing in yourself properly.


Wellness and Pain Can Help

A range of options for knee injections for pain are available at Wellness and Pain. We offer conservative treatments, routine visits, and minimally invasive quick-recovery procedures. We can keep you free of problems by providing lifestyle education and home care advice to help you avoid and manage issues, quickly relieving the inhibiting lifestyle conditions when complications arise.

At Wellness and Pain, we personalize patient care plans based on each patient’s condition and unique circumstances to relieve pain, improve mobility and mental space, and improve your overall health.


A close-up of someone holding their bruised knee that may require swollen knee treatment.

Swollen Knee Treatment for Tired and Heavy Legs

Many factors can lead to painful fluid building up in your knee joint, leading several patients to seek swollen knee treatment. Trauma — such as a sports injury — or health conditions such as arthritis or extreme leg swelling are the most common reasons.

When your knees or legs feel heavy, rest and over-the-counter medications can be used to treat most cases at home. But in many cases, a well-thought-out and planned treatment of swelling legs and knees by a pain management specialist is the smart course of action.


Swollen Knee Treatment: What’s the Swelling All About?

When your knees swell, there’s a buildup of fluid in or around your joints, which usually leads those suffering to get swollen knee treatment. Runner’s knee, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, post-traumatic arthritis, bursitis, gout, growing pains, and heaviness in legs are usually the causes.

Located between your thigh bone and shinbone, your kneecap joint is the largest joint in the body. There is also cartilage, muscle, ligaments, and nerves in your knees.

If your legs feel heavy as well, just know that both knee and leg swelling can be caused by anything that damages or irritates your knee. Knee swelling can occur if you’ve injured your knee or have a health condition that damages the tissue around it. All in all, swollen knees cause pain, stiffness, redness, or a feeling of warmth or heat.

With rest and over-the-counter medicine, you can treat most causes of knee swelling at home, but a sports injury or trauma should be treated by a health care provider or pain management specialist. Whenever your knee is in severe pain or if you can’t move it, see an expert immediately.


Swollen Knee Treatment Options and Therapy

Swollen knee treatment options — such as massage therapy, movement training, and physical therapy — can also improve mobility, ease pain, and prevent further damage. You may be able to get relief from sharp knee pain or even cure it.

Physical therapy can strengthen and increase flexibility of the muscles around your knee, which will improve its function. Mobility and function can also be improved by routine exercises. Just make sure to avoid overstraining the knees when exercising them.

In cases of severe knee pain or if your legs feel heavy, consult a knee acupuncture specialist when other treatments fail to relieve your issues. Ongoing chronic or acute pain episodes can develop when pain lasts for more than a few months. The length of time chronic pain lasts is usually much longer than you’d expect.

If either of these situations apply to you, seek the help of a pain management specialist for diagnosis and treatment. In developing a customized plan for a healthier and happier you, no matter who you consult, your exact condition and circumstance should always be taken into account.


A Different Kind of Treatment

Nonetheless, don’t discount knee pain acupuncture for treatment of swelling legs and your knee — altogether. It can reduce knee pain, improve function, increase range of motion, decrease inflammation, improve sleep, and enhance your overall well-being. There are energy channels throughout the body known as “meridians” that connect. A needle insertion triggers the release of endorphins, which relieve pain in a natural way. Acupuncture can improve your life, mobility, and health. As a complementary therapy to physical therapy and exercise, acupuncture has been shown to be highly effective in treating pain and extreme leg swelling.

Typically, a series of 30- to 40-minute treatments are required. The needle’s insertion is usually painless. A mild pricking sensation may be experienced by some patients. Symptoms such as tiredness or soreness often subside within hours after treatment. With this established method, pain can be effectively and safely treated. To treat knee pain with acupuncture, you must consult a qualified acupuncturist. A proper consultation should be conducted before you begin treatment.


Common Causes of Swelling: Swollen Knee Treatment

Knee swelling is classified as “traumatic” or “non-traumatic” by health care providers, pain management specialists, and those offering swollen knee treatment. An injury usually causes traumatic knee swelling.

ACL tears (Anterior Cruciate Ligament), MCL tears (Medial Collateral Ligament), meniscus tears, hyperextended knees, sprains, bone fractures, dislocations, and Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome (PFPS) are the most common causes of knee swelling. The very latter occurs when nerves and bone are invaded by pain within soft tissues surrounding the kneecap.

Knee swelling caused by arthritis is usually non-traumatic. Swelling can be caused by degenerative arthritis (Osteoarthritis) and inflammatory arthritis (such as Rheumatoid Arthritis and Psoriatic Arthritis). Non-traumatic knee swelling can also be caused by autoimmune disorders, infections, bursitis, and tendinitis.

Be sure to rule out water-on-the-knee if you’re experiencing pain. Inflammation of the knee, commonly known as knee effusion or water-on-the-knee, can result from a variety of factors, such as a traumatic injury or a chronic disease like Rheumatoid Arthritis. It’s important to seek medical advice if you experience new, sudden or worsening swelling in your knee. These may result in complications. You should seek medical attention if you have a fever, are unable to put weight on your knee, or cannot feel a pulse below the knee.


Another Reason to Seek Medical Attention

If your legs feel heavy, the cause of your swollen knees might be chronic venous insufficiency. This is evident by extreme leg swelling. These conditions may require treatment for swollen legs, in addition to your knees. When blood is pumped through your body, it flows back to your heart through your veins, and it is pumped upward against gravity. Blood does not flow backward through your veins since your veins and circulation are protected by valves on the inside. The vascular valves in your legs provide a very important function as they circulate blood back to your heart.

When vessels stretch, those valves cannot function as efficiently. The accumulation of blood and waste products in your legs can make them heavy, tired, and swollen. Vein valves may not function properly if they’ve lost elasticity over time, leading many patients to look into treatment of swelling legs.


Swollen Knee Treatment: Alleviating Pain at Home

Depending on the type of swelling and pain you have, your swollen knee treatment will look and feel different. Immediately seek medical attention if you have been injured.

The swelling in your knees, caused by non-traumatic injury, can initially be treated at home. Keep your knees healthy by avoiding sports or activities that cause stress. Pain and inflammation can be relieved with over-the-counter pain relievers or acetaminophen. If you take pain relievers more than 10 days in a row, you should talk to your pain management specialist or health care provider.

Here are some helpful tips when your knee is in pain or when your legs feel heavy:

  • Whenever possible, elevate your knees and legs above the level of your heart.
  • The best thing to do when you have an injury is to rest. While your knee heals, don’t overuse it.
  • To reduce swelling, wrap an elastic bandage around your knee for compression purposes.
  • For 15 minutes at a time, apply ice packs wrapped in a thin towel around your knee.

You may be recommended further at-home treatment and advice if you have a specific injury or health condition. It’s possible you might need crutches, a brace to hold your knee in place, physical therapy, or even corticosteroids (anti-inflammatory medicine) to treat your knee pain or extreme leg swelling.


When Surgery is an Option

The majority of people who experience knee swelling or need swollen knee treatment don’t need surgery. However, you may need a knee arthroscopy to repair damage inside your knee if swelling is caused by a torn ligament or meniscus.

When arthritis makes your daily routine difficult or impossible, your doctor may recommend a knee replacement (arthroplasty). If other treatments fail to relieve your symptoms, your provider will usually recommend surgery.

You can discuss your recovery time and expectations with your doctor or surgeon if you need knee surgery — and how it all relates to the rest of your body when your legs feel heavy.


Prevention is Important: Swollen Knee Treatment

Make sure you wear protective equipment when participating in sports or other physical activities so you won’t have to go through swollen knee treatment in the future. In cases of knee pain, do not “play through the pain.”

After intense exercise, allow your body to rest and recover. Also, before exercising or playing sports, stretch and warm up, and cool down and stretch afterward.

Trauma and injuries should be treated by a healthcare provider. When non-traumatic swelling doesn’t improve with at-home treatments in a few days, consult a provider. When you experience severe pain, or you cannot move or use your knee — or if you’ve been involved in an accident or a fallen-from-height incident — visit the emergency room immediately.

If your swollen knee is related to extreme leg swelling, you can reduce your risks and make healthier lifestyle choices. These measures include getting routine massages, taking cold baths, avoiding tight clothing, avoiding smoking, staying routinely active through each day, and exercising. Additionally, it involves eating healthier, keeping your leg muscles toned, elevating and resting your legs, making sure you get enough sleep, and wearing compression socks or stockings.


Wellness and Pain Can Help

A range of options for swollen knee treatment are available at Wellness and Pain. Here, we offer conservative treatments, routine visits, and minimally invasive quick-recovery procedures. We can keep you free of problems. We provide lifestyle education and home care advice to help you avoid and manage issues. Additionally, we quickly relieve inhibiting lifestyle conditions when complications arise.

We personalize patient care plans based on each patient’s condition and unique circumstances to relieve pain, improve mobility and mental space, and improve your overall health.

Learn more about your swollen leg treatment options.

An illustrative x-ray view of a man who requires knee pain treatment as he holds his knee.

Knee Pain Treatment Options for a Healthier You

It’s not unusual to have sore knees and seek out knee pain treatment the older you get. Fortunately, hurting or aching knees usually aren’t a sign of anything serious. Muscle strain, tendonitis, and arthritis are all possible causes. There are even times when a cause cannot be determined.

After a few days, you should start feeling better if you’re experiencing knee pain while at home. However, the pain is more likely to occur as you age. People who carry extra weight on their bodies are also more likely to suffer, and it’s also possible for pain to creep in from a sports injury.

It’s important to note that surgical interventions may not always be needed. Sometimes all it takes is some tender loving care. Some of the best non-surgical treatment for knee pain has been developed over the past several years. If you’re suffering, pain management experts have a variety of options to relieve your symptoms before the damage or inflammation becomes too severe.

For years now, many patients have reported in post-visit discussions that knee pain acupuncture is the best treatment for knee joint pain that relieves the pain without surgery. However, a qualified acupuncturist is required for this procedure, and proper consultation should be conducted before you begin treatment.

That’s just one solution. Today’s research and development has brought an entire set of options into the medical spotlight for those who are in anguish, misery, or discomfort every day.


Acupuncture Essentials

In addition to reducing knee pain, improving function, increasing range of motion, decreasing inflammation and improving sleep, knee pain treatment through acupuncture can also enhance your overall health and wellbeing. A thin needle is inserted into specific points around your knee, a practice that dates back centuries to traditional Chinese medicine.

“Meridians,” which are energy channels throughout the body, are believed to be connected to these points. Pain is naturally relieved by needle insertion because endorphins are released. The benefits of acupuncture include a reduction of inflammation, improvement of circulation, and reduction of pain — all of which make your life, mobility, and health easier to manage. Combining acupuncture with other pain treatments, such as physical therapy and exercise, has proven to be the best non-surgical treatment for knee pain for hundreds of thousands of patients worldwide.

In most cases, a series of treatments are needed, each lasting 30-40 minutes. The needle is usually inserted without pain, although there may be a mild pricking sensation for some patients. After the treatment, you may feel tired or sore, but these symptoms usually go away within a few hours. With this established method, pain can be safely and effectively treated.


Non-Surgical Knee Pain Treatment Options

For some patients, a number of medications can be injected directly into the knee — a solution for some who are exploring several types of knee pain treatment. To reduce inflammation, corticosteroids are used. Infusion therapy reduces inflammation by delivering medications intravenously and directly into the muscles.

To improve flexibility and joint support for other patients, rehabilitation medicine and exercise programs can stretch and strengthen the muscles and soft tissues of your knee joint. You may also be able to alleviate knee pain by changing the way you perform your daily activities, thereby limiting excessive strain on your knees. Therapeutics and other apparel designed specifically for knee pain can help alleviate the pain.

Some patients use a special brace to stabilize their knee joint — and it can work for a long time. The purpose of knee braces is to support and balance your joint, reducing pain and inflammation, as well as strengthening muscles. This brace decreases friction between bone surfaces, reduces pain, and increases mobility by putting pressure on the sides of the joint.


If you Don’t Want to use a Knee Brace

You may be asked to modify your daily routine, which may include reducing your weight and avoiding activities such as running and performing low-impact exercises, which will reduce knee stress. Also, some patients benefit from nutraceuticals when using them to help maintain knee joint health. Bones and soft tissues may benefit from vitamin and other supplements that contain glucosamine and chondroitin. Nonetheless, the best treatment for knee joint pain for so many victims is out there, waiting to be utilized.

Knee pain is also commonly treated with over-the-counter pain relievers, such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen. Temporary pain relief can also be achieved with topical “analgesics” — essentially, pain medication that’s applied directly to the skin, such as muscle rubs. Other prescription medications may also be recommended, such as antirheumatic drugs and biological response modifiers.

At the end of the day, you should consult a qualified and trained pain management specialist for the best non-surgical treatment for knee pain.


Joint Anatomy & Knee Pain

Knees are the largest joints — and some of the most important — in the body, which makes knee pain treatment a top priority for so many patients. Your knee is composed of bones, ligaments, cartilage, and tendons.

Three bones meet at the knee joint. These are the thighbone (also known as the femur); the shinbone (also known as the tibia); and kneecap (also known as the patella).

Bones are connected by four major ligaments. The collateral ligament and cruciate ligament keep your knee in place by holding your bones together. However, your knee also has articular cartilage and meniscus cartilage.

Altogether, the combined toughness and durability of these special parts work to cushion and stabilize your joints — intertwined with tendons that connect muscle to bone. The best non-surgical treatment for knee pain starts with pain management specialists who use their knowledge and expertise of your knee to pinpoint the right treatment for your specific situation.


Advice for Daily Living: Knee Pain Treatment

Whether you have knee pain from a recent injury, chronic arthritis, aging, or a different life or health issue, there are many things you can try to alleviate the pain while simultaneously looking into the right knee pain treatment:

  • Your footwear should be a priority. You can reduce knee pain by wearing cushioned insoles. Putting special insoles into your shoes may be recommended by your doctor if you have osteoarthritis of the knee. Consult your doctor or physical therapist to determine which insole is right for you.
  • Make sure your home’s temperature is set at a comfortable level. To ease swelling and numb pain, use a cold pack for 48 to 72 hours after a knee injury. You can use a plastic bag filled with ice or frozen peas. For best results, use it three or four times a day for 15 to 20 minutes each time. Wrap your ice pack in a towel to protect your skin. After that, you can warm things up by taking a warm bath, using a heating pad, or using a warm towel three or four times per day for 15 to 20 minutes each time.
  • Consider using a walking aid if necessary. Your knee can be relieved of stress by using a crutch or cane. You can also maintain stability by wearing knee braces and splints.
  • Acupuncture treatment for knee pain shouldn’t be overlooked. It is commonly used to relieve many types of pain and may help. Many patients find that the best non-surgical treatment for knee pain comes through having needles inserted at specific points on the body by an expert acupuncturist.


Even More you can do

  • Stay physically active. You can reinjure your muscles if you rest too much. Make sure you stick with an exercise program that is safe for your knees. Talk to your doctor or physical therapist if you aren’t sure which motions are safe to participate in.
  • Take care of your knee by resting, applying ice, using compression care, and elevating it. The treatment is suitable for minor knee injuries or flare-ups of arthritis. Elevate your knee, rest your knee, apply ice to reduce swelling, and wear a compressive bandage.
  • Maintain a healthy weight. The stress on your knee will be reduced by losing weight. It isn’t even necessary for you to reach your “ideal” weight. There is still a difference to be made with smaller changes.
  • Maintain a healthy heart. The muscles of the heart are strengthened by cardio exercises. The goal is to keep your muscles limber while lifting weights. Your weight will stay stable and you’ll feel stronger overall if you do cardio. There are many cardio exercises you can do, such as walking, swimming, water aerobics, stationary cycling, and elliptical machines. Aside from easing stiffness and improving balance, Tai Chi may also help ease stiffness.
  • Limit your risks. Knee pain or instability can increase the risk of a fall, which can lead to further knee damage. If you need to reach something on a high shelf, use a sturdy ladder, foot stool, and make sure your home is well lit.
  • Don’t hesitate to ask the experts for help.Having a doctor examine your knees if you are experiencing new pain is a good idea. Identifying the issue as soon as possible can prevent further damage. The best knee pain treatment starts with seeing a pain management specialist.


Could My Knee Pain be Osteoarthritis?

Pain in your knee may develop over time, may strike suddenly, or may recur repeatedly — leading you to question the legitimacy or efficacy of knee pain treatment. Most of the time, the pain isn’t due to arthritis, but it just might be arthritis in some cases.

The most common type of arthritis is osteoarthritis. People of all ages can be affected, but those over 50 are most likely to suffer from it. You might feel that your knee is stiff and painful when you have osteoarthritis of the knee. One or both knees may be affected.

During the day, the pain might be worse, and when you move your knee, it might improve. It’s common to feel stiff in the morning, but it won’t last more than 30 minutes. You may feel osteoarthritis pain throughout your knee, or you may feel it only in a certain area, such as the front or side. When you go up or down stairs, your knee might feel worse.

“Degenerative joint disease” or “wear-and-tear arthritis” are terms people use to describe osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis. Knees, hands, and hips are the most commonly affected joints. As cartilage within a joint breaks down, bone changes underneath. Still, the best non-surgical treatment for knee pain that’s right for you can be discovered with proper medical consultation and planning.

Medications are not the only way to reduce arthritis pain in adults. Regular physical activity can be as effective as over-the-counter medications in treating arthritis pain in adults. Aside from improving physical function and mood, physical activity also reduces disability and anxiety. For most adults, walking, biking, swimming, and other water activities are great ways to ease arthritis pain.


Wellness and Pain Can Help

A range of knee pain treatment options are available at Wellness and Pain. We offer conservative treatments, routine visits, and minimally invasive quick-recovery procedures. We can keep you free of problems by providing lifestyle education and home care advice to help you avoid and manage issues, quickly relieving the conditions inhibiting your life by using the best non-surgical treatment for knee pain.

At Wellness and Pain, we personalize patient care plans based on each patient’s condition and unique circumstances to relieve pain, improve mobility and mental space, and improve your overall health.

Identifying Whether You Need Acute Knee Pain Treatment

Acute Knee Pain Treatment

Acute Knee Pain Treatment: Identifying Whether You Need It

Acute knee pain treatment may be necessary when you find yourself suffering from a chronic or persistent knee issue. Whenever these issues flare up, they can cause pain, which then makes it hard to walk and/or complete daily routine functions. Pain may present itself when one bends the knee, when weight is put onto the knee, or even just when sitting and/or relaxing.

However, there are many ways to alleviate or eliminate these knee issues, which can then end up giving you a long-lasting remedy for intense knee pain or even a cure for sharp knee pain. It’s easier to deal with pain if you visit a pain management specialist. Doctors who practice anesthesiology are experts in pain management trained to assess patients and develop a customized treatment plan.

According to the Arthritis Foundation, the knee is the largest joint in the body. These knee bones connect the upper and lower leg. When you walk, squat, or sit, you’re using this interconnected system as a hinge.

Seeing a Pain Management Specialist for Acute Knee Pain Treatment

Any acute knee pain treatment plan needs pain management to improve recovery and lessen discomfort. Experts in pain management know how to use pain relief options combined together for the benefit of receiving better results. Some treatments used individually may not seem to make a difference immediately, yet may produce the result one is looking for when it’s a part of a multimodal treatment plan.

Using pain management techniques, pain specialists help patients diagnose and find a remedy for intense knee pain by treating their pain safely and effectively. There’s no need for medication for treatments. Oftentimes, it’s better to manage pain holistically, with or without medications, because it’s more effective.

Your circumstance and an accurate diagnosis from a pain management specialist can help determine what your situation may require and help to find a cure for sharp knee pain.

Factors Determining Your Need for Acute Knee Pain Treatment

Here are some life instances which may require you to seek out acute knee pain treatment. Knee joints are made up of bone, cartilage, ligaments, and fluid. A knee joint moves because of muscles and tendons. You have knee problems if any of these structures are damaged. Here are some very common knee pain causes:

  • An injury to the ligament. When you twist your body, you hurt your anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). A car accident or sports injury usually damages the posterior cruciate ligament (PCL).
  • Injuries and problems with cartilage. Various things can soften or tear the cartilage in the kneecap, including injury, overuse, muscle weakness, and misalignment.
  • Injuries to your tendon. A fall or overuse can cause either inflammation or a tear.
  • You’ve developed osteoarthritis. Eventually, cartilage wears away in the knee. Researchers have found that climbing, kneeling, knee bending, squatting, and heavy lifting contribute to knee pain and osteoarthritis.
  • You’ve developed rheumatoid arthritis. There’s a possibility the knee will become swollen and cartilage will be ruined.
  • Badly bruised or broken kneecap. Falling or direct blow to the knee usually breaks the small, round bone (patella) that sits over the front of the knee.

At What Point Should You Seek Acute Knee Pain Treatment?

Whenever your acute (short-term) knee pain begins to turn into chronic (long-term), it’s time to see a pain specialist to develop a plan for acute knee pain treatment. Most people think this happens when the pain lasts longer than 90 days, but it could happen sooner. Chronic pain is pain that lasts a lot longer than you expect for your condition.

It’s up to a pain management specialist to diagnose and treat you, either on their own or in consultation with other doctors. Depending on your condition, this might include your primary care doctor, your orthopedist, your rheumatologist, or your physical therapist.

A man's knee receiving physical therapy for acute knee pain treatment.

In orthopedics, you treat problems with bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, and muscles. Besides treating arthritis, rheumatologists also treat other diseases that cause joints to ache. Patients can increase mobility, ease pain, and prevent further damage with physical therapy exercises and stretches, movement training, and massage therapy.  These treatments may work to become your remedy for intense knee pain and/or a cure for sharp knee pain.

Diagnosis, Timing, ‘Referred Pain,’ Testing, and More

Getting an accurate answer on how to proceed going forward with acute knee pain treatment requires a thorough exam. During the exam, see if the pain is coming from the knee. A hip injury is a possible source of referred knee pain. Referred pain occurs when an injury or disease in one part of your body causes pain in another part of your body.

Doctors consider the following information when making a diagnosis:

  • Imaging and other test results. Structure damage or abnormalities can be detected with X-rays, MRIs, or CT scans. These image tests can tell if arthritis is present, if the space between the bones is narrower, bone spurs are present, or if the joint isn’t aligned.
  • An overview of the patient. It’s important for the physician to determine whether there have been any accidents or sports injuries. Besides asking where and when you feel pain, the doctor will also ask you how long it lasts.
  • Features and characteristics of the patient. Certain traits make people more likely to get certain conditions. Older adults are more likely to develop osteoarthritis, and people who practice athletic activities are more likely to suffer from overuse injuries. It’s also possible to have some conditions because of obesity, which easily adds extra stress onto your joints when walking.
  • Physical exam results. During an exam, your doctor moves and probes your knee for damage. It includes looking for pain behind the knee, in front of the knee, or inside or on top of the knee.

Other Tests to Determine Treatment

Special tests can also identify the type of arthritis you have. Other tests to start you on your journey for picking the right acute knee pain treatment may include:

  • Checking fluids. In order to examine your knee joint, doctors can draw fluid from it. The fluid can show uric acid crystals if gout is causing inflammation and pain. An infection caused by the presence of bacteria is responsible for these symptoms.
  • Completing a blood workup. Rheumatoid arthritis can be detected by bloodwork with anti-CCP antibodies. Besides antibodies, other conditions may be related to inflammation throughout the entire body, like lupus.
  • CAT scans and MRIs create more detailed images of bones and soft tissues so they’re more useful for diagnosing injuries and unexplained swellings. If your doctor suspects that you have a cartilage or ligament tear, they will most likely order an MRI.

Treatments Can Vary, so Consider All Your Options

Acute knee pain treatment depends on your injury. Also, your preferences in treatment may change. Consider all your options. Here are some examples:

  • Make changes to your lifestyle. Weight control, for example, reduces knee pain, and in some instances, may even be a remedy for intense knee pain. Activities such as running can cause knee pain by exerting too much force on the joint.
  • Take it easy, ice, compress, and elevate. Treatments for chronic pain are different. These things may work for acute pain. Pain may sometimes get worse with rest, weakening muscles that need strengthening.
  • Getting fit and exercising. You can build or stretch your muscles and ease your pain with some exercises. Also, you should learn which exercises to avoid because they could possibly harm your knee even more.
  • Blocks for the genicular nerve. To provide short-term relief, a healthcare provider can administer an anesthetic injection. Radiofrequency ablation might offer a long-term relief, if it’s effective. During this procedure, heat is used to coagulate the nerve proteins, which ends pain.
  • Therapy for regenerating cells. Researchers are still investigating the effectiveness of plasma injections and stem cell treatments. The research is still in the early stages, so it’s still hard to say.
  • Treatments that complement traditional medicine, such as acute knee pain treatment. There are a lot of ways you can find relief, like through massage, biofeedback, relaxation, meditation, acupuncture, or yoga.
  • There are over-the-counters and prescription drugs. Other medications, like steroids, can help. Your pain management specialist should oversee your medication plan. It’s also important to be careful with anti-inflammatory medications and steroids, since they can damage cartilage and joints.
  • Surgical procedure. Repairing structural damage is the main purpose of this last option. You should never go for surgery first, but sometimes it’s the best option.

Wellness and Pain

At Wellness and Pain, the best doctor for acute knee pain treatment can perform a quick 10-minute ultrasound to diagnose and treat you so you can live a healthier, more active life free of pain. We also offer other diagnostic tests, such as nerve and muscle testing, for a deeper assessment of what’s actually going on with your knees and legs.  Get started by resolving to seek out a remedy for intense knee pain and/or a possible cure for sharp knee pain today!

Covered by Most Insurances and Most Unions

Wellness and Pain accepts most major insurance plans. Here is a list of some of the major insurance plans we accept. If you do not see your insurance plan listed, please call our office to confirm.

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