Are You Dealing With Knee Pain?

Nearly everyone will experience joint pain at some point. However, if the pain is not going away, the issue could be arthritis. Arthritis is a painful condition affecting almost 50 million Americans. The pain is quite common in the knees and can cause intense discomfort from simple tasks like walking. To treat the pain and discomfort of arthritis, some doctors will suggest a knee arthroscopy. But should everyone have the procedure?

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Understanding arthritis

Arthritis can be a total pain, literally. Between each joint in the body are varying degrees of cartilage. This prevents the bones from banging together and helps with shock absorption. The degrading of cartilage and the pain that comes with the process is called arthritis. This can develop in several ways. The most common is osteoarthritis. This is the natural wear and tear of bone and cartilage with age. However, there are other types like gout and rheumatoid arthritis.

Making the knee shiny and new with arthroscopy

For severe cases, surgery can help ease the nagging, intense pain that comes with arthritis. Knee arthroscopy is the most common procedure done on the knees. The goal is to repair or replace damaged cartilage. For someone with arthritis, a successful arthroscopy means reduced pain, a better range of motion, and better quality of life.

The steps of knee arthroscopy

To complete a knee arthroscopy, the surgeon will make a small incision and insert an arthroscope. An arthroscope has a high-powered camera that can tell the extent of the damage. From there, the surgeon can repair damaged cartilage. This is done by inserting other micro tools to treat the affected areas. In some cases, the surgeon will replace the cartilage with prosthetics. This is common in a total knee replacement. After arthroscopy, the surgeon will stitch the wound, and rehab begins. Based on the extent of damage, recovery can take from a few weeks to several months.

Getting the right treatment

Despite the effectiveness of knee arthroscopy, the treatment is not for everyone. In some cases, arthritis may not cause any pain. More importantly, doctors can treat arthritis in a variety of non-surgical ways. These strategies might include medication, physical therapy, and steroid injections. The most important thing is getting the right assessment from a rheumatologist. Most non-surgical treatments will be effective. In serious cases, knee surgery will make sense.

Find out if surgery is right for you

Knee arthritis can put a damper on simple tasks and pause many long-term life goals. For starters, all non-surgical treatment must fail to know if surgery is needed. At this point, speak with a medical professional, namely a rheumatologist. Using the right tests, this specialist can confirm if knee arthroscopy is the best step.

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