About Knee Joint - Sahaj Therapy®

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Anatomy of the Knee Joint

A joint is where two or more bones meet.

The knee joint is where your thigh bone (femur) and shin bone (tibia) meet. The end of each bone is covered with cartilage which has a smooth, slippery surface that allows the ends of the bones to move against each other almost without friction.

The knee joint is held in place by four large ligaments. The ligaments prevent the bones from moving in the wrong directions or dislocation.

The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL)

The posterior cruciate ligament (PCL)

The medial and lateral collateral ligaments (MCL and LCL)

Two C-shaped pieces of fibrous tissue called the medial and lateral menisci to act as shock absorbers between the femur and tibia.

Understanding Knee Joint Pain:

Pain in the Knee joint could be due to a problem in one or more of the Knee joint structures.

Muscles– Muscles are supporting structures of the knee joint. Muscles provide stability and are responsible for joint movement. Muscle injury and weakness can cause knee pain.

Symptoms Of Muscle Weakness-

Pain (Front Knee Pain), Pain while stair climbing, Clicking Sound (Crepitus), Reduced muscle mass, tenderness, etc.

Treatment- 

Dietary Changes- High protein Diet.

Physiotherapy– (Muscle Strengthening Exercise, knee flexibility exercise, and knee range of motion exercise). Exercise is important because it helps to strengthen knee muscles and maintain the joint range of motion.

Medication- Simple pain killers (Analgesic) like paracetamol can help to ease the pain.

Tendon/Ligaments – Connecting tissues between Bone to Muscle are tendons, and Bone to Bone are ligaments. The joint pain, in this case, maybe due to a stretch or an injury. Pain in the tendons of the knee is typically felt at the front of the knee.

Symptoms:

  • Pain- above or below the kneecap
  • Pain that recurs with activity and ease with rest
  • Swelling, Stiffness, and restricted mobility
  • In severe cases, pain becomes constant (despite resting the joint) and can even disrupt sleep.

Treatment-

  • Rest- Not using the affected muscles and tendons for a few days to a few weeks gives the body time to repair itself.
  • Icing – Apply ice packs to the painful area for 20-minute periods, three or four times a day.
  • Medication- Taking a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug such as paracetamol can relieve pain and swelling.
  • Use Brace or Splint- For protection or unloading the tendon.
  • Physiotherapy- Like Ultrasound, cross friction massage, or water therapy to improve joint mobility. Stretching and strengthening exercise. A physical therapist can also guide you through a rehabilitation program to help you to regain strength, motion, and function.
  • Local Corticosteroids injection- To reduced swelling and inflammation.
  • PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma)- PRP delivering growth factors that help in reducing inflammation and promote healing.

Ligament- The tissue structure that connects two bones to form a joint.

Knee pain due to ligament Injury- Ligament may be stretched (sprained/ torn) or sometimes torn (ruptured).

Symptoms- (Ligament Sprain/ Tear) – Laxity or loosening of the joint.

Symptoms of a knee ligament injury vary depending on the specific ligament that is torn or ruptured:

Treatment-  Treatment may include:

  • Rest
  • Icing
  • Elevation- Of injured leg
  • Compression- Can reduced the further swelling.
  • Medication such as ibuprofen (Reduced swelling)
  • Muscle-strengthening exercises and knee Range of Motion Exercise
  • Protective knee brace (for Protection)
  • Surgery- Arthroscopy

Cartilage-

Cartilage is a tough coating on the bone surface. Damage in the Cartilage can cause knee pain. With the age advance, particularly after 40’s, the degeneration of cartilage increases, and bone starts exposing to other bone. The root cause of pain is stimulation of nerve ending below the cartilage, which is exposed due to a defect in the cartilage, and pain gets started.

Cartilage undergoes a normal cycle of breakdown and repair. As the joint surface wears away, the body attempts to replace it using an inflammatory response. So the Cartilage regeneration and degeneration is a continuous process.

Causes Of Cartilage Damage-

A knee cartilage injury can happen in several ways, either suddenly or from general wear and tear. Specific incidents which may affect the knee cartilage can include:

  • Age- After the age of 40, cells which regenerate cartilage start losing their capacity to regenerate.
  • Wear and Tear (Most Common Cause)- With the age advance
  • Joint Dislocation: An injury in which a joint is forced out of its normal position.
  • Meniscus Tear: An injury, usually a forceful twist, which tears a particular piece of knee cartilage.
  • Impact: A fall or blow can dislocate or tear the cartilage.
  • Infection: A condition called septic arthritis, involving inflammation of the joint.
  • Inflammation: Most forms of arthritis include this painful swelling which affects the cartilage
  • Obesity: More load on the joints increases the potential for more joint damage.

Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease characterized by joint pain. Experts believe that Cartilage degeneration is the root cause of Arthritis characterized by pain & stiffness in joints. In India, one out of every six patients suffers from joints pain. Moreover, data suggest that more & more young patients are detected with Osteoarthritis, putting a major concern on the health of the younger working population of the country.

Grades Of Osteoarthritis- 

  • Osteoarthritis is commonly having Two Grades.
  • 1- Early Grade – Includes 3 stages I, II & III
  • 2- Late Grade – Its last stage IV

Symptoms-

  • Pain- Pain in knee joint
  • Swelling- around the knee joint
  • Stiffness- Morning stiffness
  • Crepitus- Cracking sound
  • Inability to fully straighten or bend knee.

Treatment-

  • Non-Operative Treatments:
    • Protect the affected area from further injury by using a support, such as a knee brace.
    • Rest the affected joint.
    • Elevate the affected limb and apply an ice pack to the joint regularly.
    • Take ordinary painkillers, such as paracetamol or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen.
    • Physiotherapy- strengthens the muscles around the joint, relieving some of the burdens on the cartilage and bone.
  • Operative Treatment
    • Regenerative Medicine
    • PRP
    • Bone Marrow Aspirate Stem Cell Concentrate (BMAC)
    • Total Knee Replacement (TKR)

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