The knee is a vulnerable joint. It takes the full weight of the body and is subject to considerable additional forces with movement and activity. The knee is susceptible to a variety of problems which can lead to pain.
Knee pain is an extremely common complaint, and there are many causes. Treatment of knee pain must be directed at the specific cause of your problem. Some signs that you should be seen by a Chiropractor include:
- Inability to walk comfortably on the affected side
- Injury that causes deformity around the joint
- Knee pain that occurs at night or while resting
- Knee pain that persists beyond a few days
- Locking (inability to bend) the knee
- Swelling of the joint or the calf area
- Signs of an infection, including fever, redness, warmth
- Any other unusual symptoms
It is important to get an accurate diagnosis of the cause of your symptoms so that appropriate treatment can be directed at the cause. If you have knee pain, some common causes include:
Arthritis is among the most common causes of knee pain, and there are many treatments available. Medication can slow the onset and help deal with inflammation; Our Chiropractors can often help with the symptoms, i.e. the associated muscle aches, pains and stiffness, by utilising some of their other skills such as muscle release techniques.
Ligament injuries commonly occur during athletic activities and can cause discomfort and instability.
- Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) Injury
- Posterior Cruciate Ligament (PCL) Injury
- Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) Injury
Cartilage Injuries | Meniscal Tear
Cartilage tears are seen in young and old patients alike, and are also an extremely common cause of knee pain.
Tendonitis around the joint is most commonly of the patellar tendon, the large tendon over the front of the knee.
Chondromalacia causes knee pain under the kneecap and is due to softening of the cartilage. It is most common in younger patients (15-35 years old).
A dislocating kneecap causes acute symptoms during the dislocation, but can also lead to chronic knee pain. It is important to strengthen the muscles around the knee to minimize the occurance of dislocation and therefore the occurance of acute injuries.
A Baker’s cyst is swelling in the back of the joint, and is usually a sign of another underlying problem such as a meniscal tear.
The most common bursa affected around the joint is just above the kneecap. This is most common in people who kneel for work, such as gardeners or carpetlayers.
Plica syndrome is an uncommon cause of knee pain, and can be difficult to diagnose. The diagnosis is usually made at the time of arthroscopy.
Osgood-Schlatter disease is a condition seen in adolescents and is due to irritation of the growth plate just at the front of the joint.
Treatments for Knee Pain
Treatment of knee pain depends entirely on the cause of the problem. Therefore, it is of utmost importance that you understand the cause of your symptoms before embarking on a treatment program.
Some common treatments for knee pain are listed here. Not all of these treatments are appropriate for every condition, but they may be helpful in your situation.
Chiropractic is an important aspect of treatment of almost all orthopedic conditions. Chiropractors use different techniques to increase strength, regain mobility, and help return patients to their pre-injury level of activity.
Ice and Heat Application
Ice packs and heat pads are among the most commonly used treatments for knee pain. So which one is the right one to use, ice or heat? And how long should the ice or heat treatments last? Your chiropractor will go through a routine of ice and or heat with you once assessment and diagnosis have been achieved.
Stretching the muscles and tendons that surround the joint can help with some causes of knee pain. Our chiropractors are also trained in Sports Therapy and are very knowledgable in a plethora of stretching and strengthening exercises. The will design a bespoke programme to get you back to full health as soon as possible.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications, commonly referred to as NSAIDs, are some of the most commonly prescribed medications, especially for patients with knee pain caused by problems such as arthritis, bursitis, and tendonitis. You will need to consult your GP regarding medicaiton.
Cortisone is a powerful medication that treats inflammation, but it can weaken the ligaments which support the joint and is not always successful first or even second time. Discuss with your doctor and or chiropractor the possible benefits of a cortisone injection for your condition.