It was another long day at work and when I arrived home there I was, my dad’s friend sitting and waiting to ask me how he can receive knee arthritis treatment! I must say it was tempting for me to tell him to visit our website, mobile physiotherapy Sydney and schedule him in for a proper assessment!
So what happened? Read on to find out….
What is arthritis?
Before I go on to talk about what treatments are available for knee arthritis, here is a link that provides a good definition of what arthritis is. Arthritis is an inflammation of the joints. It can affect one joint or multiple joints. There are more than 100 different types of arthritis, with different causes and treatment methods. Two of the most common types are osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
Knee Arthritis Treatment?
This article will discuss specifically what treatments are available for knee arthritis focussing primarily on knee osteoarthritis. There are some great resources out there for people to read on and the Arthritis Australia website is a good start.
Treatment for knee arthritis, similar to other musculoskeletal disorders is usually classified into surgical and conservative approaches. In future posts I will discuss surgical options for knee arthritis and this is an evolving field. In this post I will focus on conservative treatment for knee arthritis
What are the conservative treatments for knee arthritis?
Conservative treatment options for knee arthritis can be generally grouped into passive and active treatment techniques.
Passive treatment techniques is where little effort if any is required from the individual receiving the treatment. Passive treatments tend to have short term effects and can include:
- Joint mobilisations
- Soft tissue techniques
- Dry needling
- Braces and gaurds
- Heat pack/ cold pack
As this is a consumer based post, the information provided is geared in such a way to help individuals with knee arthritis. Whereas if I was providing education or an opinion to other therapists I would definitely frame my views different. I guess what I am trying to get at is that some passive treatments for knee osteoarthritis may be very useful especially if they are used in adjunct with active approaches.
Active approaches for the treatment of knee arthritis include:
- Analysing Biomechanics
- Monitoring load
- Weight loss strategies including diet
There is good evidence that demonstrates the right type of exercises can significantly help to improve the pain associated with knee arthritis. Further, if surgical intervention are sought for knee arthritis in the future, active treatment prior to surgical interventions can significantly help improve rehabilitation timeframes in the postoperative period.
How can our physiotherapists help?
At Allied Health 2U, our mobile physiotherapy team provides tailored treatment for individuals with knee arthritis. We will sit down and discuss with you what your goals are and walk you through your journey to recovery.
Pre-habilitation and rehabilitation is also provided for individuals with knee arthritis undergoing surgery. Our orthopaedic physiotherapists will be able to guide you through the process ensuring there is not an ounce of stress, while you make the most of your new knee!
Take home message
It is important to understand that every single individual will have different requirements in their management. While some key points such as general exercise and weight loss helpful, they may not help all individuals. Getting a specific assessment will allow a tailored management program. For example, a skilled therapist who can identify when knee pain is referred from the lower back and understand how the lower back can be treated can save years and years of trouble for the person suffering! Of course, this can be quite tricky when there are also changes on scans which demonstrate knee arthritis is present !!
Oh! and as for my dad’s friend! That story is would take way too long for this post! Maybe another time 🙂