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Treatment Options for Knee Arthritis

The most common form of arthritis is osteoarthritis, and the most often affected joint is the knee. If you have knee pain due to arthritis, you’re not alone. Although arthritis is a progressive, degenerative condition, there are treatments that can slow the progression and ease your symptoms. 

Dr. Arash Dini has helped many patients with osteoarthritis of the knee live more active lives with less pain. Whether you need to strengthen the muscles around your joint or get relief from your symptoms, he can provide expert guidance and care. 

Arthritis of the knee

Arthritis isn’t a single disease. In fact, there are more than 100 different conditions that fall under the umbrella of arthritis. However, osteoarthritis of the knee is the most common one. 

If you consider the amount of work your knee does, it’s not surprising that it’s so often affected. Your knee holds your body weight, moves you through the world, allows you to jump, run, walk, and even sit. All of that amazing movement can happen without pain when your joint is well-lubricated and the bones move smoothly. 

Your knee joint is lubricated by a substance called synovial fluid, and the bones are protected by cartilage. When you have arthritis, there’s less synovial fluid and the cartilage begins to break down. Your knee may become inflamed, stiff, swollen, and painful. 

There’s no cure for knee osteoarthritis, but there are treatments that can lessen the impact of your symptoms and slow the progression of the disease. We outline these treatments here.

Medications

When you’re in pain, you probably reach for an over-the-counter pain reliever, and that’s often the first line of defense against the symptoms of knee arthritis. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications are another tool that may be helpful, depending on factors such as your overall health, other medications, and medical history. Dr. Dini may suggest prescription medications as well. 

Physical therapy and exercise

Strengthening the muscles that surround and support your knee can help ease the pain. Increasing your flexibility in tight muscles like your hamstrings may also be helpful.

Exercise may not seem like a good thing to do when your knee hurts, however, it’s one of the best ways to prevent progression of arthritis. In addition to strengthening your muscles and improving your flexibility, you should consider exercise that increases your heart rate. When your blood is moving, it’s delivering necessary oxygen and nutrients to the structures of your knee. 

If walking is too painful, consider swimming, or perhaps water exercise classes. As you become stronger, the movements you can do comfortably are likely to expand, giving you more options. 

One other benefit of exercise is that it can help you maintain a healthy weight. The closer you are to a healthy weight, the less pressure there is on your knee joint when you stand or walk. 

Injections

If your joint is inflamed, Dr. Dini may suggest steroid injections. Although injections aren’t a good option for long-term relief, they can help reduce inflammation and ease your symptoms temporarily. 

Surgery

Dr. Dini is an expert in performing knee arthroscopy, which is a minimally invasive procedure that allows him to view the inside of your knee. During the surgery, he may also repair tissue or clean up bone fragments. The goal is to preserve the tissue in your knee for as long as possible. 

A diagnosis of knee arthritis can make you feel like you’re doomed to a life of pain and stiffness, but that’s not necessarily true. With appropriate treatment, you can continue living an active and full life. And, the earlier you get treatment the better your outcome is going to be. 

If you’re living with knee pain, schedule an appointment with Dr. Dini. He can answer your questions and guide you through the treatments that are available to you. Schedule your appointment at either of our two convenient offices in Encino or Los Angeles, California. You can book online or give us a call.

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